UN Commemorates the International Peace Day

According to Christopher Harress, as conflicts continue to rage in Ukraine, Syria and locations around Asia, Africa and South America, International Peace Day is perhaps a timely reminder of the alternatives that exist to violence.
The 2015 theme is ‘Partnerships for Peace -- Dignity for All’, according to the United Nations [UN] website, which notes the theme highlights the importance of all segments of society to work together and strive for peace.

Grid Planning as Important as Power Generation

The Institute for Security Studies (ISS) has said that, “Energy planning in South Africa has neglected the key element of how electricity moves from generation to consumption.”
In Gridlocked‚ a research paper‚ the ISS’s Steve Hedden criticises “government’s response to power shortages and load-shedding” for having been “a thrust towards more power generation” but has neglected the element of “transmission and distribution”.

Zambian Citizens Pay the Price for Mining Expansion

Northwest Zambian senior chief, Musele, has sold a tract of land to a foreign firm for a new copper mine, and leaves hundreds of families displaced.
Seke Mwansakombe, one of the displaced women, explains to the Thomson Reuters Foundation, that, they had vast land and could do anything, but are now are confined to 40 by 40 metre plots restricting their movements as certain areas are now no-go areas.

SDGs to Succeed if they Can Succeed in Africa

The new international targets to improve people's lives and protect life on the planet, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), do much more than just extend for another 15 years the remit of the Millennium Development Goals.

The SDGs, an unprecedented collective global push to tackle the root causes of poverty, focus sharply on issues of justice, inequality and equity.

The SDGs will only succeed, however, if they can succeed in Africa – a continent whose rapidly growing population most needs the change that the agenda describes.

Vavi Leads Anti-Corruption March

Former Congress of South African Trade Union (COSATU) general secretary, Zwelinzima Vavi, plans to stage a nationwide strike to protest against corruption in the government and the private sector.

In making the announcement, Vavi was accompanied by leaders of the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa and other independent unions that have been expelled from COSATU.

The Need for Stronger Alliances Between Workers’ Movements and Development NGOs

Development non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are deepening their understanding of the causes inequality and poverty, and so building up a political agenda and movement to tackle it. There has been vital new thinking about the need to ensure fair and progressive taxation as one of the means to ensure the capacity of states to provide better services to citizens, and thus contribute to reducing inequality. Other measures such as redistribution of assets through land reform have also been highlighted as critical.

The State of Electricity in South Africa - Part II: The Progress in Medupi

The construction of Medupi power station was first commissioned in 2007 to remedy Eskom’s electricity capacity, which had started exhibiting signs of failure to meet demand. It is the fourth dry-cooled, baseload station built in 20 years by Eskom after the Kendal, Majuba and Matimba power stations.

Legislation Aimed at Tanzania’s Poor

Tanzanian President, Jakaya Kikwete, has signed a legislation which could ensure his country's fiscal and economic stability and help ensure revenue from Tanzania's natural gas discoveries brings socioeconomic progress for Tanzanian citizens.

The recent gas discoveries have the potential to bring in as much as US$1.4 billion per year to Tanzania which is more than 10 percent of current government revenues.

The new revenues could help provide basic needs for citizens such as improved primary healthcare and access to quality education.

Call to Empower Women to Grow Economies

The World Bank has recently reported that South Africa could boost its growth to 5.4 percent and double people's incomes between now and 2030.

The bank says however, that this could be possible if the country can overcome the huge obstacle of under-employment and make the most of the growing working-age population.

The bank is of  the view that getting basic education and post-school vocation training right is vital, adding that educating, empowering and employing more women is a strong route to economic growth and to a more resilient and balanced nation.

United Nations’ Strategy to Promote New SDGs

The United Nations has announced a bold communications strategy in a bid to reach seven billion people in seven days with news about the new Sustainable Developed Goals (SDG).

In collaboration with renowned British filmmaker and creator Richard Curtis, the Global Goals Campaign is partnering with wide spectrum of people and organisations across media platforms to reach as many people as possible between 25 September and 2 October 2015.

The 17 goals to address global socio economic and political ills will formally be adopted by UN Heads of State later this month.


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