August 2016

Nigeria's Cement Price Jumps by 40 Percent

Prices of various brands of cement skyrocketed overnight across the country putting builders and suppliers under unexpected pressure. Brands of cement initially sold at between N1, 500 and N1, 600 have jumped to between N2, 200 and N2, 400 in most parts of the country, Daily Trust correspondents report.

Dealers of cement in Kano State yesterday attributed the increase to unexpected suspension of production by the major cement companies.

Group Head, Corporate Communications at Dangote, Anthony Chiejina, said the increment was due to the acute shortage of forex and increase in the energy price of gas due to depreciation of the naira.


Zimbabwe Ministers Tour New City Site

By Tendai Mugabe and Praise Bvumbamera

Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister Saviour Kasukuwere and his Transport and Infrastructure Development counterpart Dr Jorum Gumbo yesterday toured the site of the new city to be constructed in Mt Hampden. The tour was organised to have an appreciation of the area and road works leading to the new Parliament building to be constructed in the area.Speaking to journalists at the site, Minister Kasukuwere said construction of the new Parliament building was taking shape.

"This is the beginning of the construction of the road that will lead to the new Parliament building," he said.

"We have completed all the negotiations and discussions with the Chinese government who are supporting and funding the construction of the new Parliament as it has been accepted by the Cabinet and also been accepted by the Chinese government.


Editor's Note:

Mount Hampden is a village in Mashonaland East province in Zimbabwe. It is about 11 miles from the capital Harare. It was the original destination of the Rhodesian Pioneer Column, the Column eventually settled some 11 miles to the south. Mount Hampden was named by the hunter and explorer Frederick Courtney Selous after John Hampden the Puritan leader during the Cromwellian Wars in Britain. Source:

Apple's China suppliers join efforts to green supply chain

Apple, through its clean energy programs, will join with Chinese suppliers to put in place more than 2 GW of new alternative energy in coming years, avoiding the release of more than 20 million metric tons of greenhouse gas pollution in the country between now and 2020.

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Health Equity and the Role for Community Development

Equity is a hot topic these days as our nation struggles with what is fair and just, and for whom. In philanthropy, equity is high on the agenda among major players, for example, the Ford Foundation, Kresge, Kellogg, the California Endowment, and many others. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s new push for a Culture of Health places health equity central to its goals.

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Anambra Abattoir, Where Butchers Use Stream Water

One major feature that qualifies an abattoir as meeting up with standard of decency and hygiene is the availability of potable water. This will not only ensure clean and hygienic environment, but provide meat safe for human consumption.

In this regard, Anambra State can hardly boast of a decent and hygienic abattoir. Virtually all the slaughter houses in the state lack the basic amenities of a standard abattoir.

A visit to any of the abattoirs in the state would clearly reveal that their condition leaves much to be desired. Their condition is enough to make one lose appetite for meat. Apart from using the same platform meant for slaughtering cows to take their bath and wash their clothes, the butchers also light tyres to roast the meat.


Building collapse kills Two in Mogadishu

A woman and a baby died when a three-storey old building collapsed in Mogadishu on Monday night, local authorities and residents said.

Rescue work was ongoing at the site in the coastal capital throughout last night as local police said they feared people still lay trapped under the rubble.

Local residents reports said the victims were members of locally displaced persons (IDPs) who are sheltering near the collapsed building which was an old printing house in Shangani district.


CDC : Sod turning ceremony to mark R11bn Chinese investment

Pretoria – The Coega Development Corporation (CDC) on Tuesday hosted a sod turning ceremony to mark the R11 billion investment by the Beijing Automobile International Corporation (BAIC) at the Coega Industrial Development Zone.

Earlier in August, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies announced the successful contractual conclusion between BAIC and the CDC to establish a completely knocked down (CKD) automotive manufacturing plant in the Coega IDZ.

The BAIC investment is an outcome of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) that was held in Johannesburg in December 2015, where President Jacob Zuma and Chinese Prime Minister Xi Jinping signed no less than 26 bilateral agreements valued at approximately R100 billion.

The Minister described the investment as significant and deepens South Africa’s economic relationship with China.

“The size of this investment demonstrates confidence by China and confidence in South Africa as an investment destination. The investment is strategic and is a major project in terms of our bilateral relationship and a key project supported by the Inter Ministerial Committee on Investment,” said Minister Davies at the time.

The project positions the Eastern Cape as an automotive hub and has the potential of deepening the component supply chain, job creation and economic development.

According to Dr Ayanda Vilakazi, CDC Unit Head of marketing and communications, the 85 000 square metre plant will occupy 54 hectares of land in Zone 1 of the Coega IDZ.

It is expected to create 2 500 jobs directly and more than 10 600 jobs indirectly.

“The plant is the single largest investment in the whole of Africa and is expected to start with construction before the end of the year, lasting little over 18 months with production commencement by the end of 2017.

“Furthermore, the plant will have a maximum annual production capacity of 100 000 units,” said Vilakazi.


As part of our celebration of International Women’s Day in March this year, OSISA launched the 6th Edition of BUWA! JOURNAL on African Women’s Experiences.

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Africa stands to benefit from new trade deals and, possibly, from Brexit

African trade and economic integration is set for growth Shutterstock

The last few months have seen some significant developments for African trade and integration. These advances come at a crucial time for African countries, which have been particularly hard hit by the slump in commodity prices, China’s economic downturn, and higher external borrowing costs. This has resulted in slower GDP growth than expected, currency fluctuations and reduced investment – particularly in resource-rich countries.

New dynamics are emerging as a result of two major developments: first, a set of agreements between regional African blocs and the European Union, as well as between African countries themselves. Second, Brexit may change the thrust of African trade with both the EU and Britain.

Combined, they are likely to have some positive economic implications for Africa.

Intra-African trade has comprised about 15% of Africa’s total trade over the last decade. This compares with intra-regional trade rates of, for example, 17% in South and Central America, and 62% in Asia. African exports to the EU have increased substantially in recent years, from €85 billion in 2004 to more than €150 billion in 2014.

Architectural Education Symposium 2016

Event Date: 
Saturday, 3 September, 2016 - Sunday, 4 September, 2016
2 days
Wits University, East Campus
South Africa

The University of the Witwatersrand - School of Architecture and Planning invites members of the architectural profession to attend the Architectural Education Symposium 2016 entitled "Architectural Education @ different scales"which will take place between 03- 04 September 2016 at the Oppenheimer Life Sciences Building (OLS), East Campus, University of the Witwatersrand, Jorissen Street.
Please click on the link to access the AEF SYMPOSIUM 2016 PROGRAMME.

Lessons from Kenya: what’s holding back solar technology in Africa

Africa has the best solar resource in the world. Rogan Ward/Reuters

The spread of solar and other modern energy technologies in African countries is considerably low. Despite the global viability and growth in the solar energy market, African countries continue to lag behind. They represent less than 1% of the market demand for solar energy.

The region accounts for only 9% of the global installed capacity of photo-voltaics (PV) which convert light into electricity using semi-conducting materials. The solar PV technology power generation rate rose from 1% in 2010 to just between 3% and 4% in 2013.

This is despite the fact that Africa has the best solar resource in the world. Most countries on the African continent receive between 4 – 6 kWh/m2/day in most months of the year. This means that in a day, a square metre of solar panel can generate 4 to 6 kilowatt units of electricity. In simple terms, it could power 400 - 600 10-watt light bulbs for one hour.

Mugabe panics as soldiers rampage

Uniformed soldiers on Friday night emptied Harare’s night clubs and ruthlessly attacked people on the streets after police triggered violent protests in the capital earlier in the day as President Robert Mugabe’s government fought to suppress dissent against his rule.

By Everson Mushava

Zimbabwe’s 18 opposition parties including former vice-president Joice Mujuru’s Zimbabwe People First and MDC led by Morgan Tsvangirai had obtained a High Court order barring police from interfering with their intended demonstration.

The parties under the banner of the National Electoral Reform Agenda (Nera) and Coalition for Democrats wanted to protest against unfair electoral laws and systems, but were violently blocked by the police; minutes after the High Court had okayed the event.

The situation turned violent and for close to 12 hours, police were engaged in running battles with protestors in the central business district. Th protesters were angered by the police provocation. Some ran amok, looting shops, smashing cars and setting property ablaze.


South Africa should use a more scientific approach to appoint its public protector

South Africa's public protector, Thuli Madonsela, was rated among the world's 100 most influential people by Time. Lucas Jackson/Reuters

South Africa is in the process of selecting a new public protector to replace the incumbent, Thuli Madonsela. The country’s National Assembly is responsible for recruiting her replacement. But the way it goes about doing this is deeply flawed.

Firstly, the recruitment and selection ad hoc committee assembled to make the decision consists entirely of politicians. It has 11 members – six from the governing African National Congress, two from the main opposition Democratic Alliance, one from the Economic Freedom Fighters and two from smaller parties. All represent their party interests. This hugely compromises the professional ethics of recruitment and selection.

The second problem is that a mere interview process is inadequate if the aim is to identify behavioural characteristics like integrity, honesty and reliability. These are characteristics the public protector needs to have.

These problems could be addressed if a more competency based assessment selection method was used. A more professional approach would be appropriate since the key post should be occupied by an apolitical, professional person. He or she is not an elected political office bearer.

Eskom Backtracks, Wants Review of Green Energy Project

While Eskom said it remains committed to sign all of the remaining renewable energy independent power producer (REIPP) contracts under the current bid window, it reportedly backtracked on this pledge last week.

Eskom CEO Brian Molefe reportedly refused to sign an agreement for a government approved concentrated solar project with Acwa/Redstone in the Northern Cape last Wednesday. It was the second time he had refused to sign the agreement, signalling a move to disrupt the successful REIPP programme.

However, Eskom said this was not the case.


Rwandan City Leaders Urged On Decentralisation

By Frederic Byumvuhore and Eric Uwiringiyimana

Authorities at the City of Kigali have been urged to regularly approach citizens, listen and help them to tackle the problems they face in the community.

The message was delivered by Francis Kaboneka, the minister for local government, yesterday, while addressing local leaders of the City of Kigali during a meeting at Petit Stade in Remera.

The meeting was organised by the city council and brought together local leaders from the village level to the City level to discuss achievements during the 2015/16 fiscal year and prepare for new financial year.


Durban Workers Buried Alive in Collapsed Trench

Two workers are in a serious but stable condition after a trench collapsed at a construction site in Durban on Monday afternoon, paramedics said.

The men had been excavating a trench for the placement of cables when the sides gave way, burying them alive, said Marshall Security spokesperson Kyle van Reenen.


M1 Structural Bridge Collapse Inquiry Postponed to Next Year

Pretoria — The Presiding Officer in the Inquiry into the M1/Grayston Drive pedestrian and cyclist structural bridge collapse has on Monday dismissed the sitting of the commission until next year.

This follows a short notice request for additional information from an expert witness representing Form-Scaff, who was supposed to testify today but could not make to the inquiry.

The inquiry's Presiding Officer Lennie Samuel said Gary Farrow, a mechanical engineer from Australia, was in Melbourne and unable to come to South Africa because Murray & Roberts had requested additional information from Form-Scaff expert witness, which he could not deliver on time before the sitting.

A week ago Murray & Roberts had sent a list of 72 questions to Farrow, and the inquiry felt that it was a short time for him to respond to the questions, and be ready on time to appear before the inquiry.

"We did not want to prejudice the Form-Scaff witness by subjecting him to intense interrogation without enough time to prepare," Samuel said.

The inquiry was expected to sit for seven consecutive working days until 6 September 2016.

Samuel said the commission was now in a predicament after the seven lost days.

"Next year we will be faced with added pressure because of time. I appeal to all affected parties to commit to time schedules when requested to submit statements and reports, so as to mitigate further delays," he said.

The M1/Grayston Drive Pedestrian and cyclist structural bridge collapse Inquiry was announced by the Department of Labour in October 2015, and started its work in February 2016 with an understanding that the Inquiry was to last six months.

However, following delays caused by late submission of statements/reports, the non-availability of legal representatives it is now expected to be completed next year.

The next sitting of the inquiry is now scheduled for 27-31 March 2017.

Six Rescued, Two Trapped As Agencies Trade Blame Over Abuja Building Collapse

By Ibanga Isine

Two construction workers remained trapped Monday night under the rubbles of a building which collapsed at the Wupa District of Monday morning, witnesses and officials told PREMIUM TIMES.

Six other workers, who were inside the building before it went down were however rescued by a combined team of officials of the National Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Fire Service, the Nigeria Police and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).

Neighbours told PREMIUM TIMES that collapsed building is owned by a firm, Global Success Resources Limited. Multiple calls by this newspaper to officials of the company did not go through as at 9.10pm on Monday.


The most important dam you probably haven't heard of

The most important dam you probably haven't heard ofLarge dams are major nation-building projects. They harness power to generate energy, provide water for large-scale irrigation and can help control flooding. And politicians often describe them as symbols of national power and technical prowess.
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AEF Symposium - WITS School of Architecture and Planning 03-04 2016

 The University of the Witwatersrand  - School of Architecture and Planning invites members of the architectural profession to attend the Architectural Education Symposium 2016 entitled "Architectural Education @ different scales"which will take place between 03- 04 September 2016 at the  Oppenheimer Life Sciences Building (OLS), East Campus, University of the Witwatersrand,  Jorissen Street.

 Please click on the link to access the AEF SYMPOSIUM 2016 PROGRAMME.

South African Council for the Architectural Profession

AZA16 - 31 August - 03 September 2016



SACAP is proud to be an associate sponsor of the AZA16 Scale : 31.08 – 03.09. 

AZA16, the much anticipated design and architecture event of the year, is almost here. 

The updated programme is bursting with a rich array of critical contemporary questions, interactive breakaway sessions and urban fun. Get down to the detail now.

Join international and local thought leaders and visionaries, as they explore the ways in which architects can innovate across scales to transform society. Scale up and down between keynote addresses by 6 international experts, parallel sessions which showcase the full gamut of our cutting-edge local practitioners, and more intimate engagements with speakers and colleagues in the breakaway sessions. 

Power Outage At Lagos Airport Disrupts Airlines' Operations

Flight operations were disrupted at the international terminal of the Murtala Muhammed Airport (MMA), Lagos, for two days - Saturday and Sunday - following continued power outage there.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) gathered that the power outage which had not been restored as at the time of filing this report had affected international operations of airlines flying in and out of the airport.

The General Manager, Public Affairs, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Yakubu Dati, confirmed the development on Sunday in Lagos to newsmen.


Rwanda's Districts to Construct Model Urban Community Settlements

By Steven Muvunyi

All thirty districts of the country will have an urban community settlement, commonly known as 'model village,' by the end of the next financial year.

The project will be implemented under the rural settlement policy, requiring residents living in rural areas to live in well planned settlements.

The Integrated Development Programme (IDP model village) was initiated in 2010 to promote proper human settlement in rural areas.


The Perils of House Hunting in Kigali

By Hudson Kuteesa

It is a tale of ups and downs, twists and turns for people trying to get a house to rent in Kigali. These range from families shifting from one house to another to young corporate starting out their careers and embarking on the journey of living out of their parent’s homes for the very first time.

The big question is; “What is the most ideal way to house hunt? It is generally about how to find a house that fits within a particular budget, the ideal locations to find decent houses to rent, among other factors.

After all, where you live may even be more crucial than where you work. The place where you eat, sleep and carry out important life activities needs to be somewhere you can relax, afford, and in a location that will not turn your journey to the work place into a nightmare.


Eight trapped and six rescued in Abuja building collapse

Not feweer eight people are still trapped in a building collapse in Abuja's Gwarimpa estate.

According to a News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) report, the building collapse too place at 444 crescent in the estate.

Details are expected to follow.


Megacity Foreseen As Dar es Saalam Expands

By Sylivester Domasa

The government will spend 655bn/- (about 300 million US dollars) this year in a 'clean-up' exercise focusing to transform Dar es Salaam into a future megacity that meets the urgent infrastructure demands for basic services, urban mobility and flood control.

The plan is part of the Dar es Salaam Metropolitan Development Project (DMDP) that aims to improve urban service and institutional capacity in the metropolitan, strategically to accommodate demands for a country's commercial capital.

Minister of State (President's Office, Regional Administration and Local Governments) Mr George Simbachawene said this on Thursday exclusively during 'Tumetekeleza,' a live telecast aired on the Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC).


NHC Projects to Transform Tanzania's Economy

By Florence Mugarula

The National Housing Corporation (NHC) Director General, Mr Nehemiah Mchechu said yesterday that his organization is looking forward to strengthen the country's economy and boost businesses through the establishment of satellite cities in the country.

He said the establishment of satellite cities will enable majority Tanzanians to engage in various economic activities in conducive environment. So far, NHC is continuing with plans to build satellite cities in Arusha and Dar es Salaam.

He said for Dar es Salaam residents, the establishment of Kawe satellite city will enable them to engage in economic activities for 24 hours. At the moment, according to Mr Mchechu, Dar es Salaam residents operate only 10 hours a day in economic related activities.


Lagos Tells Owners of Illegal Structures, Street Hawkers to Vacate Within 14 Days

By Olasunkanmi Akoni Lagos—THE Lagos State Government, yesterday, issued a 14-day ultimatum to owners of illegal structures, shanties, street hawkers and those who have converted walkways into trading points and food courts in Ikoyi, Victoria Island and the Lagoon Front of Lekki to vacate or face demolition and prosecution.

Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Mr Tunji Bello, who handed down the ultimatum, warned that if such illegal structures were not removed at expiration of the 14 days grace, the Special Task Force would be forced to enforce the state laws on environment. Bello said: “The owners of all illegal structures, shanties, abandoned buildings and all those who have converted road median to commercial uses in Ikoyi, Victoria Island and Lekki have between today (Monday) and two weeks’ time to comply or have the State Special Task Force on the Clean-Up of the areas to contend with.”

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Global leadership is in crisis – it's time to stop the rot

Bad leaders are bad news – for their followers and for the world as a whole. Shutterstock

People around the world are angry and frustrated with those who “lead” them. Increasingly, leaders and leadership generate scepticism and, in some cases, open revolt.

People’s trust and faith in leadership and the institutions they represent is evaporating at an alarming rate. There’s a deepening, widening crisis in the legitimacy and credibility of leadership. This crisis can be attributed to five primary sources: unable; unintelligent; immature; immoral and/or destructive leaders.

I estimate that at least 30% – and rising – of the world’s current leadership is virally infected by one or more of these sources. It is crucial that this crisis is tackled, and leadership is reimagined to fit the new world order.

Without this process of reimagining, the world’s very future may be at stake. Bad leaders will destroy people, wreck economies and tear societies apart – irreparably.