New technologies for social housing

first_imgThis project in Kliptown, Soweto, is one of 2.3-million funded by the government. Minister Tokyo Sexwale viewing alternative sanitation systems at the indaba. Ahmed Ahmed exhibited his solar lighting system. Hydraform produces strong bricks. (Images: Bongani Nkosi) MEDIA CONTACTS • Chris Vick, Spokesperson, Department of Human Settlements +27 83 556 7644 or +27 12 421 1645  RELATED ARTICLES • New homes for Soweto residents • Housing projects to curb SA slums • Urban housing success story • Social development in South AfricaBongani NkosiSouth Africa is now looking into alternative and innovative building materials to address backlogs in social housing delivery, and also to improve the quality of its products.The Department of Human Settlements hosted an indaba on 29 and 30 September in Sandton, Johannesburg, to explore new technologies that could be used for its building projects. The indaba, attended by leading business executives and research academics, was meant to find “new ideas” that are “concrete and implementable”, the department’s minister Tokyo Sexwale said.The department is addressing various faults in a number of social housing projects across the country.  It has bulldozed shoddily built houses, spending billions of rands on rebuilding them.Demolishing started in the Eastern Cape in November 2009 where about 20 000 defective houses were flattened. The department also set aside R2-billion (US$287-million) to investigate “dodgy contractors” involved in corruption.As a result of inferior work, officials are forced to do comprehensive inspections on a number of ongoing projects, which is a waste of time, according to the director-general Thabane Zulu.“We should do things right from the start,” Zulu said, adding that there are extensive backlogs.The indaba saw more than 100 companies exhibiting innovative building technologies and new approaches to building. They included construction companies and developers in areas such as sanitation and solar energy.“We have to apply new technologies to build better homes,” Sexwale said.The government is looking at reasonably priced products of quality. “As we look for solutions, we should also be looking at their cost-effectiveness – searching for cheaper materials, but not compromising on quality,” said Sexwale. “The poorest of the poor deserve much better.”The alternative productsJohn Cook, MD of Nare Housing, brought his company’s steel and concrete wall surface, named the Blast Building System. Like many of the exhibited products, Cook’s new technology complements conventional bricks and mortar structures.Independent assessment company Agrément South Africa certified the product in June 2010, and Cook said they will start a project in the Eastern Cape in six weeks.It’s cheap and durable, and a house can be extended using bricks though it’s built of concrete and steel, according to Cook.“Our quality is guaranteed.  In 20 years’ time a gogo [grandmother] in Phalaborwa can get a bricklayer to extend her house. I heard they are demolishing because of poor quality – but you can never demolish this.”Germany-based Surefire Group is planning to bid for subsidy housing contracts in South Africa through a local subsidiary. Surefire exhibited its double-insulated concrete structures.“It’s stronger and cheaper than bricks and mortar,” said Surefire director Freddie Seward. “This is the future of technology; bricks and mortar are the past.”The indaba also focused on environment-friendly sanitation and electrification products. Cape Town-based Ezylight, a solar power company, introduced its lighting system, Featuring a solar panel, 12 volt battery and LED lights, the system costs R1 700 ($244) and lasts a lifetime, said founder Ahmed Ahmed.“Our focus for social housing is lighting,” he said.The market for solar energy in South Africa is still “very tight” and the indaba was a “move in the right direction by the government” towards promoting the technology, Ahmed said. Ezylight has been nominated for the 2010 eta Awards, which recognise excellence in innovation and use of efficient energy.2.3 million housesSince coming to power in 1994, the incumbent government has built more than 2.3-million subsidised houses, according to Sexwale. “We’ve been building houses. This government has done better.”last_img read more

Namibian president visits South Africa

first_img7 November 2012 Namibian President Hifikepunye Pohamba kicked off a two-day state visit to South Africa on Tuesday, holding talks with President Jacob Zuma, witnessing the signing of three agreements between the two countries, and addressing the National Assembly in Cape Town. The three agreements cover the establishment of a bi-national commission between the two countries, as well as cooperation on infrastructure and public works and meteorology.Bi-national commission Addressing the media following the signing of the agreements, Zuma said that Namibia and South Africa continued to enjoy close relations in various fields. “In this regard, we have noted with great appreciation the noticeable progress that has been achieved in strengthening the political, economic and social co-operation between the two countries,” Zuma said. The South Africa-Namibia bi-national commission commission will meet annually, alternating between Pretoria and Windhoek, and will include economic, defence and security, social and diplomatic sub-commissions.Meeting with Zuma Earlier, Pohamba and Zuma discussed issues of trade, infrastructure, education, energy, tourism, science and technology and security. The two presidents also discussed political developments in the region and more widely, and agreed to consult on political issues on an ongoing basis. Pohamba said he and Zuma had also talked about the urgent need to make international bodies such as the UN Security Council, World Bank and IMF more representative.Address to National Assembly On Tuesday afternoon, Pohamba received a rousing reception from MPs when he stood up to address South Africa’s National Assembly. Saluting the strong bonds between his country and South Africa, Pohamba congratulated former Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma on her recent election as AU Commission chairperson, and said Namibia would extend its full support to her. Pohamba also commended South Africa for hosting the Pan-African Parliament, which he said was an important continental institution for African policymakers to promote and strengthen the ideals of Pan-Africanism and democratic governance. Good progress, he said, had been made in co-operation between the South Africa and Namibia in trade, capacity building, energy, infrastructure development, environmental conservation and sustainable socio-economic development. Pohamba said Namibia, like South Africa, backed the formation of a Free Trade Area bringing together the East African Community, Southern African Development Community and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa. He urged Africans to further strengthen unity and work together to harness the vast human and natural resources on the continent for the benefit of all Africans. “We recognise that the task of developing our countries, our region and our continent has not been easy. However, we must remain steadfast in our resolve that we can overcome the challenges ahead.” Source: SANews.gov.zalast_img read more

Gallery: Celebrate Marine Month in South Africa

first_imgCompiled by Melissa JavanNational Marine Month, which begins on 1 October, promotes awareness of South Africa’s marine and coastal environments, as well as of the benefits that our oceans bring to our nation.South Africa is nestled between two currents, and two oceans:The warm Agulhas Current, with rich ocean biodiversity, but not large fish stocks; andThe cold Benguela Current, which supports large fisheries such as those focused on the small pelagic (anchovy and sardine) and the demersal (hake) stocks.The Indian Ocean, on the east side of the country, is warmed by the Mozambique or Agulhas Current, which flows down from the tropics, while the Atlantic Ocean, on the west coast, is cooled by the icy Benguela Current, which comes up from the Antarctic. The Agulhas and the Benguela currents, in addition to the cold southern oceans, are key drivers of South African climate and rainfall conditions. (Image: Wikipedia)Learn more here about where the two oceans meet.Learn more here about South Africa’s geography.Photos that are copyright Media Club South Africa and Brand South Africa may be used free of charge for editorial purposes, on condition that Media Club South Africa and Brand South Africa are credited.Reasons why you should care about our oceans The world’s oceans generate most of the oxygen we breathe. (Image: Brand South Africa) The ocean regulates our climate. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica) The ocean is the producer of moisture to the atmosphere, which leads to rain. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica) Rain, which is mainly produced by the ocean, plays a vital role in agriculture. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica) The ocean cleans the water we drink. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica) Global trade is dominated by sea transport. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica) The ocean boosts tourism and has a positive impact on the economy. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica) The ocean offers us a pharmacopoeia of potential medicines. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica) The ocean helps to feed us; it also creates skills development opportunities and employment. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica)Initiatives that involve the oceanLearn more here about the government’s Operation Phakisa initiative.Find out more here about the government’s water programmes that create job opportunities.Read more here about how the ocean plays a role in tackling the energy crisis.This article was originally posted on the South African Government website.last_img read more

Shillong clubs rule in Federation Cup

first_imgIt was a day when the clubs from Shillong dominated their big brothers at the Federation Cup.While Royal Wahingdoh defeated Churchill Brothers 2-1 at the Balewadi Sports Complex, in Pune, another Shillong out-fit Lajong FC stunned Mohun Bagan 3-1 at the same ground on Monday.Wahingdoh Skipper Seityasen Singh gave his team the lead in the 29th minute. Jackichand Singh doubled the lead in the 53rd minute with a solo effort from the mid-field. Henry did pull one back but it was a bit too late.In Lajong’s match, Lalhimthara took his team forward in the 45th minute only for Odafa Okolie to restore parity in the 58th minute. Johnny Meyongar put Lajong ahead again in the 74th minute with James Gbilee scoring the third in the 81st minute. With this defeat Bagan’s journey in the Federation Cup ended.In other matches, Dempo beat Mohammedan Sporting 3-1 in Kolkata while defending champions East Bengal defeated Pune FC 2-1.Ranti Martins opened the account for Dempo in the third minute. Clifford Miranda then doubled the score with Koko Sakibu scoring the third. Stanley in the 66th minute. In the other match, East Bengal’s Scottish recruit Alan Gow put them ahead in the 42nd minute. Jeje Lalpekhlua equalised for Pune in the 57th minute but in the 82nd minute Robin Singh struck the winner.last_img read more

Celtics ban fan for two years over verbal insults toward DeMarcus Cousins

first_imgMOST READ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Bloomberg: US would benefit from more, not fewer, immigrants The Celtics indicated the fan involved was under 18 and violated team policy regarding fan conduct.“On January 26, we were alerted by DeMarcus Cousins that a fan had used racially offensive language towards him,” the Celtics said in a statement. “Immediately upon receiving the complaint, the fan, who was a minor, was ejected.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logistics“The following day, per our policy regarding any reported fan behavior complaint, the team initiated an exhaustive investigation of the incident that included reviewing video from multiple angles and identifying and interviewing numerous fans, security personnel, and police in the immediate vicinity.“In the course of this investigation, we were able to conclude that the fan had been verbally abusive toward the Golden State bench, but none of the interviewed parties were able to verify the use of racially offensive language, and video evidence proved inconclusive. Boston Celtics’ Jayson Tatum (0), Aron Baynes, and Terry Rozier (12) confront Golden State Warriors’ DeMarcus Cousins during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, March 5, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. Cousins and Tatum received double technical fouls on the play. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)The Boston Celtics have banned a supporter from all games for two years for offensive comments directed to Golden State center DeMarcus Cousins, the NBA team said Friday.The visiting Warriors defeated Boston 115-111 on January 26 with Cousins contributing 15 points and eight rebounds in 23 minutes for the reigning NBA champions.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles “Based on our investigation, the fan was issued a two-year ban from all Celtics games, and is also subject to lifetime probation pursuant to our policy. The punishment for any corroborated discriminatory language used towards any player, employee, or fan at a Celtics home game is a lifetime ban.”The Celtics shared notice of their investigation and final discipline plans with the Warriors, adding, “We express the deepest regrets that this incident happened to DeMarcus, as such behavior violates everything the Boston Celtics have always stood for.”The Utah Jazz banned a fan for life earlier this month after video emerged of a verbal exchange between the man and Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook.ADVERTISEMENT Trump tells impeachment jokes at annual turkey pardon event Colombia protesters vow new strike after talks hit snagcenter_img Lionel Messi upset with criticism from Argentina fans Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Wintry storm delivers US travel woes before Thanksgiving LATEST STORIES Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Google Philippines names new country director View commentslast_img read more

Hacker pleads guilty to hacking Apple IDs of sports stars and musicians

first_imgPhishing scams have become common these days. Back in January we heard that iPhone users had been hit a phishing scam that fooled them into believing that they were getting a call from Apple support. And now, nearly three months later a new report has revealed how a hacker used a phishing scam to hack into the Apple Ids of sports stars and musicians.According to a report by the Justice Department, a Georgia, US based man named Kwamaine Jerell Ford used a phishing scam to obtain login credentials for Apple accounts of high profile atheletes and musicians, which primarily includes NBA and NFL players and rappers. He sent thousands of phishing emails to the victims pretending to be an Apple customer service executive and requested them send him their username and password or answers to security challenge questions.Ford, in his emails to the victims, claimed that he required the Apple account credentials either to reset their Apple accounts or to access videos that individuals were purportedly trying to send the victims. Following his request, dozens of sports stars and musicians provided him their login credentials, which he then used to log into their Apple accounts and take over them.He then used the credit card information stored in these accounts to pay for thousands of dollars in air travel, hotel stays, other travel expenses, furniture, and money transfers to online payment accounts, the Justice Department revealed.Ford was indicted on six cases of wire fraud, computer fraud, access device fraud, and aggravated identity theft each back in April last year. After a year of trial, he pleaded guilty to an account computer fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. His sentencing is scheduled for June 24 this year.advertisement”The high profile victims in this case are an example that no matter who you are, hackers like Ford are trying to get your personal information. This case demonstrates the need to be careful in protecting personal information and passwords, especially in response to suspicious e-mails. Hopefully this is a lesson for everyone, not just the victims in this case,” Chris Hacker Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta said in a press release.ALSO READ: | Beware! A new type of phishing scam is targeting iPhone usersALSO READ: | Apple isn’t targeting Netflix with Apple TV+, it is trying to build a TV service of futureALSO READ: | 600 million Facebook passwords seen by employees: What, how, when and why you must change your FB password nowlast_img read more

Greatest final ever? When Luton’s ‘plastic fantastics’ toppled Arsenal

first_imgArsenal were huge favourites. Luton’s “plastic fantastics” had won only once on grass in three and a half months and their first-choice keeper, Les Sealey, and midfield enforcer, Darron McDonough, were injured. In the official programme the Gunners’ sponsors, JVC, had an advert for their PC-V2 portable sound system with a cutting tagline: “The best thing you’ve heard since getting Luton in the final.”Arsenal were battle-hardened while Luton had the 19-year-old Kingsley Black, who looked more like a choirboy, playing in his 11th professional game. As he cheerfully admitted to Jim Rosenthal beforehand, he was “very nervous” and “hadn’t had a good night’s sleep”.The omens were not good. Yet at least half the 95,000 fans stuffed into Wembley that day were from Luton and their noise, perforating and relentless – like the London 2012 Super Saturday on steroids – inspired the Hatters. They scored early through Brian Stein and had the better of much of the match.I remember I stood behind a large advertising board for Gola and touched the ball once – although rewatching the match recently I was horrified to see myself pogoing as Mark Stein cut inside Tony Adams’s sliding tackle during the second half only to shoot over the bar. Perhaps that was not a surprise: if Opta had been around back then, Stein’s chances-spurned ratio would have been higher than anyone else’s.Yet increasingly Arsenal took control and, when they scored twice in three minutes through Martin Hayes and Alan Smith, Luton supporters felt a familiar tang of dread. A month earlier they had reached the Simod Cup final, only to be smashed 4-1 by Second Division Reading. A fortnight after that they lost 2-1 to Wimbledon in the FA Cup semi-final in a half-empty White Hart Lane (my main memory is of my brother repeatedly getting car sick on the North Circular). Suddenly a season that had fizzed with possibilities was going horribly flat. Since you’re here… Share on LinkedIn Topics Arsenal fans ambivalent despite win as Arsène Wenger starts long goodbye Luton Town Share via Email Share on Messenger … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share on Pinterest Luton celebrated by partying for 48 hours and damaging the trophy. We ballboys had to settle for some cold chips Share on Twittercenter_img Tuesday marks the 30-year anniversary of one of the great Wembley cup finals – perhaps even the greatest. It was Luton versus Arsenal in the League Cup, underdog versus coming force, and to these eyes it had everything: four goals and a penalty save in the last 19 minutes, a whirler‑twirler of a match that swung one way and then the other and ended in a shock 3-2 win. Then again I am horribly biased, given I enjoyed my only experience as a ballboy that day.Even as a 13-year-old it felt like an out-of-body experience. How many kids are fortunate enough to get changed in a Wembley dressing room – in my case swapping a Luton Schools Under-13 side shirt and tie for an official white and green Littlewoods Cup tracksuit? Or, as a few of us did before the game, get to play keepie‑uppie with the Luton midfielder, Danny Wilson, in the Wembley tunnel?The venerable David Lacey, in his preview for the Guardian, had warned that “it would be unwise to expect too much – both teams use the offside trap as an easy defensive option, so Wembley could be in for a whistle-stop game”. Yet for once in his long career he was proved wrong. features Arsenal Support The Guardian Arsenal should have put the game to bed at 2-1 up. They had six great chances in three minutes, only for a combination of bad finishing and the 22-year-old Andy Dibble to keep them out – once with a brilliant penalty save from Nigel Winterburn. If expected goals had been a thing 30 years ago, the models would have overheated.Yet while Luton had been beaten up, they were not knocked out. And somehow they were able to fight back and produce a comeback worthy of Rocky.It helped that Arsenal had Gus Caesar, who became a byword for hapless incompetence in Luton playgrounds for years afterwards, at centre-half. First he miscontrolled a header from Winterburn, then he swung and barely connected with his follow-up before falling over in his own box, and the Hatters had hope.After Caesar had fallen, Luton twisted the knife. Within seconds Wilson headed the equaliser. Then, eight minutes later, Brian Stein slotted home Ashley Grimes’ cross and suddenly the Luton players were celebrating in front of their fans – and about 20 metres from me.After the game I wanted to ask the Arsenal keeper, John Lukic, if I could have his gloves as a souvenir as I walked past him on the Wembley turf but I felt I would be intruding on private grief.Luton celebrated by partying for 48 hours and accidentally damaging the trophy. We ballboys had to settle for some cold chips from a Wembley van.It has not exactly been plain sailing for the Hatters since. They were relegated four years later and at one point had a chairman who proposed building an F1 track round a 50,000-seat stadium off the M1 as he drove the club towards enforced bankruptcy. In less than a decade they went into administration three times, had 40 points worth of deductions and endured four relegations.Not everyone has cared either. The legacy of banning away supporters from Kenilworth Road after Millwall fans ran riot in 1985 or having as chairman David Evans – a Tory MP whose calls for cat o’ nine tails to be used on hooligans made Thatcher appear almost liberal – has taken a long time to shift.Watching some of their football on the way to gaining promotion to League One, achieved at Carlisle on Saturday, offered hope for a brighter future. But nothing, surely, will top that glorious April day in 1988. Sportblog Share on Facebook Share on WhatsApp Read more Reuse this contentlast_img read more