Des Squire

South Africa's new Employment Equity Amendment Bill of 2020 has been approved for submission to Parliament. SA's Cabinet says that “The Bill promotes equal opportunity and fair treatment in employment through the elimination of unfair discrimination”. 

This bill re-emphasizes how important it is for companies to actively transform their workplace but this begs the question - which companies are at risk of non-compliance?

US First Lady Michelle Obama is expected to land in South Africa on the evening of 20 June 2011. During her visit, she will engage young people about youth leadership, education, health and wellness. She will be visiting sites of the anti-apartheid struggle, meeting dignitaries, and speaking to youth leaders about empowerment.

Collins Chabane, the Minister in the Presidency Responsible for Performance Monitoring and Evaluation has announced that government is piloting a Performance Monitoring System, which will be used to measure the state of national and provincial departments, and municipalities, and service delivery. The tool has been modelled on international experience and is being adapted to local conditions.

President Jacob Zuma has arrived in Tripoli, Libya, for high-level talks with that country?s leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi. Zuma, who is engaged in the talks in his capacity as a member of the African Union High Level Panel for the resolution of the conflict in Libya, is expected to discuss the immediate cessation of all hostilities, and the cooperation of Libyan authorities to facilitate the timely delivery of humanitarian assistance to the needy in that country.

The Department of Home Affairs is cracking down on fraud and corruption within its ranks, arresting 12 of its employees in the past two weeks. With the help of the Hawks, the department?s Anti-Corruption Unit has arrested officials at the OR Tambo Airport, Durban, Grahamstown and Mount Frere, said department?s director-general Mkuseli Apleni.

As the sun rose on Friday morning, two days after the country?s fourth democratic local government elections, the results showed the African National Congress?s (ANC) support seemed stable, while the opposition, Democratic Alliance (DA) may be set for its best performance yet.

South African creativity features prominently in this years international award ceremonies. Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile took pleasure in congratulating Co-owners of Handspring Puppet Company, Adrian Kohler and Basil Jones for winning a prestigious Tony award, and Xoliswe Sithole who has been nominated in two categories for a BAFTA, after also being announced as the winner of a Peabody award.

COSATU challenges leaders of business and governments, gathered for the World Economic Forum on Africa in Cape Town, to address the expectations of workers and the poor, if such a forum is to prove relevant to the prevailing conditions on the continent.

"Shaping Africa?s Role in the New Reality" is the theme of the 21st World Economic Forum, opening at the International Conference Centre in Cape Town. Lead minister for WEF, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, explains that South Africa is now redefining its role, moving past and building on its reputation for a rich cultural heritage, the country is now emphasising achievements in the fields of science and technology, innovation and financial services.

In response to a call by President Jacob Zuma for ministers to fill vacancies in government departments, Cabinet has announced the appointment of a number of Directors General and Deputy Directors in the Departments of Trade and Industry, Arts and Culture, Labour, the Treasury, Home Affairs, and Statistics South Africa (StatsSA).

156 000 fieldworkers are to be hired by StatsSA to undertake the Census 2011 population count. The recruitment for fieldwork positions - 6 000 census fieldwork coordinators, 30 000 supervisors and 120 000 fieldworkers - forms part of the final preparations in undertaking the biggest census South Africa has seen. See the details.

The Department of Trade and Industry (dti) - together with three universities - is finalising the development of a Standardised National Training Programme for Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment verification. The department is endeavouring to set standards for the verification of the implementation of Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) by organisations, and to ensure that there are adequate numbers of trained verifiers.

President Jacob Zuma has been selected for the high level committee mandated by the African Union to mediate the conflict in Libya. Other committee members included Presidents of Mauritania, Congo, Mali, and Uganda.

Creative artists and the public who may have concerns that royalties are not properly distributed to the rightful owners of copyright, are now urged to submit their views and recommendations to the Copyright Review Commission (CRC).The CRC was formed by Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies and is led by retired Judge Ian Farlam. The commission will look at and make recommendations on various aspects of the creative artists' concerns.

Government plans to cut the red tape and make it easier to do business in South Africa by setting up a national one-stop shop to assist with investment approvals, reforming BEE codes and simplifying forms and procedures faced by small businesses.

The government and state-owned enterprises will spend more than R800 billion over the next three years on new power stations, road networks, dams and water supply pipelines, rail and ports facilities, schools, hospitals and government buildings, the Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan has revealed in his Budget Speech.

Government has set aside over R8 billion from the Health Department?s budget of R113 billion towards boosting hospital facilities that will see the phasing in of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHI).

Jobs, infrastructure development and small and medium enterprise (SMEs) promotion are likely to form the key focus of Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan's Budget Speech today.

Banks could be in for a tougher time when it comes to the fees they charge businesses and individuals, with the National Treasury?s proposal to broaden the mandate of the Financial Services Board (FSB) to include regulation of market conduct by banks.

The burgeoning economic growth of Africa and the Bric countries represent an "epoch-changing' shift in the global economy and an opportunity for South Africa, the Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan said in his Budget Speech in Parliament on Wednesday.

Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan, today announced various tax incentives for businesses particularly small and micro enterprises.

Gordhan also announced plans to overhaul two failed tax incentives in a bid to make them more attractive to businesses.

South Africa is in a welcomed economic position, the Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan, said in his Budget Speech on Wednesday, as he unveiled a budget of R979.3 billion.

Gordhan presented a budget today which targets infrastructure development, job creation, skills upgrading, while increasing expenditure on social spending such as health, education, housing and welfare grants.

"Vilakazi, CEO of BUSA since 2006, has formally conveyed his intention to resign from BUSA as CEO in order to pursue other personal interests,' BUSA spokesperson Masego Lehihi has announced.


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