The Department of Trade and Industry is calling for public comment on the draft Lotteries Amendment Bill.
This follows an announcement by Trade and Industry Minister, Rob Davies, at the recent National Lotteries Board conference that government has launched a review of the Lotteries Policy Framework which he said will lead to the introduction of a lotteries Amendment Bill.
Davies also stated that his department wanted to make a number of changes to the Act as well as further regulatory reforms.
The deadline for submission of comments is 7 June 2013.
For more information or to submit your comments, refer to www.ngopulse.org/opportunity/call-comments-national-lotteries-amendment-act.Source:SANGONeT
The HIV Vaccine Trials Network says that with the next attempts expected to be years away, top researchers now say there is a ‘void’ or a ‘gap’ in current clinical-trial efforts to test whether a vaccine is safe and effective.
The organisation says an autopsy on the past four big bids to make an HIV vaccine has informed the field as to what does not work, the latest casualty being a trial of HVTN 505 that was halted early because it did not prevent HIV.
The HIV Vaccine Trials Network director, James Kublin, points out that, "It leaves us with a gap of several years before we [can expect to] have another HIV vaccine-efficacy trial under way and that is unfortunate."
To read the article titled, “Billions of dollars later and still no AIDS vaccine,” click here.Source:Times Live
The Media Institute for Southern Africa (MISA) has called on the managing editor of Swaziland's only independent newspaper group to resign because he is too close to King Mswati III.
MISA, the foremost media freedom group in the region, says that Martin Dlamini's position was 'untenable'.
In a scathing attack on the Times of Swaziland, one of only two newspaper groups in the kingdom, MISA Swaziland chapter said Dlamini could not discharge, 'his unbiased editorial duty when he would appear to be beholden to the authorities'.
To read the article titled, MISA tells 'Times' Editor to resign,” click here.Source:All Africa
The South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) says that a Pan African Parliament (PAP) decision to launch a continent-wide campaign to promote press freedom is a ‘major move’.
In a press statement, SANEF points out that, “(We) regard this as a major move by a governmental institution to combat the growing secrecy adopted by most African governments in the conduct of affairs which should be open to the public.”
The organisation further states that attacks on journalists had resulted in deaths, injury, and long prison sentences almost entirely on trumped-up charges.
To read the article titled, “PAP media declaration hailed,” click here.Source:Independent Online
Equal Education has given Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga, until close of business on 17 May 2013 to agree to a month's extension to publish the norms and standards plan.
Equal Education has agreed with ‘great reluctance’ to the basic education minister's request for an extension to finally publish the highly contested and long-awaited norms and standards for school infrastructure.
In a letter sent to the department's legal team, it says that, "If the minister does not agree to sign the new settlement agreement and carry out her constitutional obligations, Equal Education will immediately renew their application in court."
To read the article titled, “Equal Education extends deadline for Angie's agreement,” click here.Source:Mail & Guardian
Amnesty International has urged the Zambian authorities must immediately release two young men who have been denied bail after being arrested on charges of having sex ‘against the order of nature’.
The organisation states that one of the men's neighbours reported them to the police, resulting in the arrest - their second for alleged same-sex sexual conduct, considered a crime under Zambia's penal code.
Its Zambian researcher, Simeon Mawanza, explains that laws criminalising homosexuality and gender identity criminalise the legitimate exercise of these human rights, which are protected in treaties ratified by Zambia, including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights.
To read the article titled, “Zambia urged to release two men charged with same-sex sexual conduct,” click here.Source:All Africa
Cotlands will this month host World Play Day with a variety of activities for children across South Africa.
This year’s theme, ‘Making Sense of Play’, highlights the importance of play in a child’s development.
Cotlands chief executive officer, points out that, “Even though it may appear as leisure time when children play they are actually developing crucial life skills.”
The international play day on 28 May 2013 aims to create awareness around the importance of stimulating children's sense of sight, smell, touch, taste, hearing and their two lesser known senses of proprioception (the perception of body awareness in space) and vestibular (the perception of balance or acceleration).
To read the article titled, “Provide a child with early learning lesson,” click here.Source:The Citizen
According to a joint article by Lisa Draga and Doron Isaacs, the fees charged by certain public schools mean that most South Africans cannot afford to send their children to them, even though the fees are a great boost to the schools.
Draga and Isaacs argues that top public schools have inherited better infrastructure and are able to tap into private wealth to attract the best teachers and keep class sizes small.
The note that while some schools in the provinces are flourishing, many meet in overcrowded, ramshackle buildings and produce appalling results. They further add that efforts to build schools are slow, but children grow quickly, and their right to receive a decent basic education is immediate.
To read the article titled, “Equal education is a basic right,” click here.Source:Independent Online
- The term non-governmental organisation (NGO) has the connotation and literal meaning of a group of people performing social projects parallel to government services. One of the earliest mentions of the term was just after the formation of the United Nations, immediately after the World War II. It worked well in that context as most countries and communities were suffering during the aftermath of that war; there was little trust and resources for state services and outside funding agencies worked with civil society to implement social projects to restore the well-being of communities. In South Africa, the term became fashionable in the 1990s, during the dawn of democracy, as international donors lined-up to assist in restoring the injustices of the previous regime.
Is the term still relevant in the current set-up? As the donor funding model dries up, most NGOs are failing to adapt and to re-look at their role in advancing social service projects. Currently, most international funding is channelled through government; so why would government support NGOs which by connotation work parallel to government social programmes? By the way, is there a future in South Africa for such social services, with imminent donor funding challenges? Seeing that most companies prefer to align their social investment initiatives to government priorities, and the Department of Social Development prefers to support community-based organisations (CBOs), maybe now is the time for NGOs to shift toward becoming Social Enterprises (SEs). Governments and society in general probably acknowledge the limitations of the NGO concept, but in the absence of a viable alternative, accepted it as a ‘necessary evil’.
The transition from NGO to SEs is very challenging but rewarding in the long-term and could translate into sustaining social projects. Strategy and operation has to change, and a leadership mindset shift is critical in restructuring the organisation to become a social enterprise. That evokes the spirit of entrepreneurship, which requires innovation and determination in the leadership. The approach in strategy and operation is similar to running a normal business and the only difference is motivation, which in this case would be social value instead of economic value. General business principles are applied but goals should be mission driven and appeal to the goodwill of society.
Sustainability of social projects is critical, hence services have to be carefully looked at and delivered in a way that adds value to society while generating income for the organisation. Social entrepreneurs should adopt the basic rule that if the service or product is not sellable then it is probably not valuable. CBOs should not be confused with SEs, the former generally serve a specific geographical location and their services are an extension of government social services, such as feeding schemes. Meanwhile, SEs should be scalable at other locations and their interventions should be measurable in terms of impact in people’s lives.
Most successful SE’s interventions utilise a ‘problem-based approach’, where plans are put in place to address current challenges in order to project a better future. An example would be an organisation that provides career guidance with a special emphasis on mathematics, engineering and technology to rural learners, who would otherwise not have access to such critical information. That project could be easily scaled-up and measured to determine impact and the service is critical as middle class families could pay for such information. The only trick would be to determine how innovative the project is in order to generate income for its sustainability.
Innovation by its definition involves doing things differently. Continuing with the career guidance example, the organisation could utilise young professionals practising in those fields of study to ‘tell their stories’ to learners - that way learners are not only getting first-hand information but are also motivated by meeting ‘living role models’ who did their high schooling in the same or similar environments. Another practice associated with entrepreneurship is the ability to spot partnerships in order to complement an existing service, instead of being a ‘Jack of all trades’.
Successful innovators form strategic partnerships to maximise their offerings. In this case, the career guidance organisation can source video revision lessons and study guides in those critical subjects and offer them to ‘their’ schools and learners at a reasonable fee. They may also want to facilitate weekend classes, where learners register and access additional support offered by the young professionals in problematic subject topics. That way the organisation will create a market to deliver its career guidance service while generating an income.
The above description is a simplified process of one NGO adjusting towards a social enterprise; the actual shift requires time, will and determination from its leadership and all those who are involved. The implementation of social projects requires a clear understanding of the communities involved and buy in from multiple stakeholders. It is important for social projects to acknowledge that community members are capable of making their lives better, given the necessary support and tools. Project managers should spend some time in the communities to understand local issues, spot champions and provide support for communities to ‘own’ the projects.
- Goodman Chauke is a marketing manager of Mindset Network and a social entrepreneurship student at the Gordon Institute of Business Science (University of Pretoria).
The Ahmed Kathrada Foundation says the government’s investigation into the Gupta scandal must reveal how one family came to wield such ‘immense’ influence, ‘which it so brazenly displays over and over again’, in such a short period.
The foundation welcomes the government’s commitment to get to the bottom of the ‘sordid saga’ involving a private jet loaded with wedding guests being allowed to land at Waterkloof Air Force Base.
In addition, it describes the incident as a matter of national concern which warrant ‘the widespread condemnation and careful attention of all democrats’.
Neeshan Balton, executive director of the foundation, recalls that the Guptas have previously used Joburg’s Zoo Lake as a private landing pad for their helicopters.
To read the article titled, “Solving the ‘sordid Gupta saga’,” click here.Source:Independent Online