Official Government Wires

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Wednesday, 6 January 2010
First Edition


Matric's anxiety over tomorrow

SA minister to participate in SADC meeting

Reports about SABC GCEO irresponsible - ministry

Offensive bus operators could be banned

Malaria increases as rainy season continues

Matric's anxiety over tomorrow

Pretoria - Most matriculants across the country will know their fate
when the 2009 matric examination results are officially released later

The results published in major newspapers will be available from
midnight as well as on the Department of Education's website. Pupils can
also visit their respective schools for the last time to receive their

A total of 581 573 full time candidates and 38 595 repeat candidates
wrote 197 examination papers in centres across the country.

Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga, will formally announce how
the matric class of 2009 Grade performed, when she briefs the media at
the Union Buildings at 7am. The briefing is expected to be broadcast
live on SABC2.

Provincial Education MECs will also announce the provincial results.

Matric pupils in Mpumalanga, who were not directly affected by the
leaking of five exam papers last year, may receive their results along
with the rest of the country if Umalusi accepts a proposal by Motshekga.

The minister is expected to request Umalusi to reconsider its decision
not to release any Mpumalanga matric pupils' results while they were
still being verified in a meeting today.

If Umalusi agrees, 80 percent of the Mpumalanga matrics who wrote their
exams will receive their results along with those in other provinces. -

SA minister to participate in SADC meeting

Pretoria - International Relations Minister, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane,
will tomorrow travel to Mozambique to attend a Southern African
Development Community's (SADC) political and diplomatic meeting.

According to the department, the meeting will prepare for the upcoming
African Union (AU) summit later this month.

The ministers will among others discuss their nomination of Malawi for
chairmanship of the AU summit.

The department said the meeting is a follow-up to September's gathering
in Kinshasa where Malawi's candidacy was first proposed.

The foreign ministers will also be briefed on Zimbabwe by South African
representatives and on the political situation in Madagascar.

The 14th Ordinary Session of the AU is scheduled for 25 January to 2
February 2010 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The theme of the summit is
"Information and Communication Technologies in Africa."

However, concerns about continents hotpots like Zimbabwe, Madagascar,
Niger, Guinea and Sudan could overshadow the summit.

Football could also be a hot topic with South Africa hosting the 2010
FIFA World Cup. The leaders will be eager to hear that country's report
on the preparations. - BuaNews

Reports about SABC GCEO irresponsible - ministry

Pretoria - The Ministry of Communications has described a weekend media
report regarding the appointment of Solly Mokoetle as Group Chief
Executive Officer (GCEO) of the South African Broadcasting Corporation
(SABC) grossly irresponsible and lacking in credibility.

"We find the report, as published in the Sunday Times of 3 January 2010,
to be grossly irresponsible and lacking in credibility as the statements
are merely attributed to so-called anonymous sources," said the
department in a statement.

In the weekend report, an anonymous source claimed that the board would
protest the appointment, because due process had not been followed and
it would hinder the board from appointing its own CEO.

The ministry said it was irresponsible for anyone to attempt to portray
a picture of discontent and perpetuate the notion that there was a
crisis regarding the appointment of a GCEO by the SABC interim board.

It further said that the interim board was well within its rights to
make such an appointment "because it has the equal amount of authority
as a full, permanent board".

The reports had suggested that the incoming board should have the
prerogative to appoint a GCEO, however, the ministry said this was
baseless and unfounded.

"A GCEO is not the property of any particular board and there's nothing
in the Broadcasting Act and/or the Articles of Association that govern
the SABC; that dictates that the term of a GCEO should be synchronized
with that of a board of directors.

"Neither is there any clause that states that every board should appoint
its own GCEO. The Ministry of Communications also finds as irresponsible
and unprofessional the conduct of the board member/s quoted as the
anonymous sources."

The ministry said it was unbecoming for any board member to disregard
the available channels to raise whatever grievances they may have and
instead opt for planting baseless stories in the media.

"This goes against the letter, spirit and purport of corporate
governance which board members should endeavour to uphold at all times."

It said no one had approached the office of the Minister of
Communications to raise concern about either the legitimacy of the
process of appointing the GCEO or the successful candidate's suitability
to hold that kind of office. - BuaNews

Offensive bus operators could be banned

Pretoria - Western Cape provincial government is considering banning bus
operators who consistently disregard the law and place human life at

The province's Departments of Transport and Community Safety have
pledged to leave no stone unturned to ensure that unroadworthy buses are
removed in the province's roads in a bid to reduce road accidents.

"We summoned a full briefing from legal experts and senior staff to
recommend steps to prevent buses and bus operators from flagrantly
ignoring their responsibilities to all road users," the departments said
in a joint statement on Tuesday.

MEC for Transport Robin Carlisle said that while the province cannot
immediately ban dangerous bus operators, it was doing everything
possible with the law to keep roads safe.

By the end of February, facilities and staff will be in place to effect
24/7 inspection of all buses entering and leaving the province on the N1
at the Beaufort West weigh-bridge and on the N2 at the Swellendam

The departments warned that any buses deliberately avoiding these
inspection sites by deviating from their dedicated routes would be

Meanwhile, Community Safety MEC Lennit Max said bus operators who allow
unsafe buses or drunk drivers to put the public's safety at risk are in
the authorities' sightlines and "their days are truly numbered".

This festive season more than 20 buses were stopped and removed from the
province's roads for gravely serious road safety violations.

The province has recently summoned a full briefing from legal experts
and senior staff to recommend steps to prevent buses and bus operators
from flagrantly ignoring their responsibilities to all road users. -

Malaria increases as rainy season continues

By Sydney Masinga

Polokwane - The Limpopo Department of Health has expressed concern about
an increase in malaria cases in the Vhembe and Mopani districts over the
past two weeks.

Department spokesperson Selby Makgotho said more than 80 patients had
been treated for malaria at various hospitals and clinics since the week
of Christmas.

"A total of 10 patients were treated at the Donald Fraser Hospital, nine
at Tshilidzini and four at Malamulele over the Christmas weekend. In
Mopani, about 36 cases were reported east of Giyani and 22 in the
Ba-Phalaborwa areas over the past week alone," said Makgotho on Tuesday.

He added that people who suspected they had malaria should seek
immediate treatment.

"We urge communities to immediately consult their nearest health
facility for malaria tests if they experience flu-like symptoms such as
body pain, headaches as well as fever," he said.

The department will be using gatherings such as funerals, tribal
authority meetings as well as community meetings to promote malaria
awareness campaigns during the rainy season.

More than two million people in Limpopo live in malaria-risk areas and
Makgotho warned that more cases could be expected because of the
continuing rains.

"Unfortunately, Limpopo is prone to malaria epidemics, especially
between September and April every year, with few cases reported in
winter," he said. - BuaNews

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