Daily Archives: March 9, 2018

ITC Global renouvelle son contrat avec Plan International pour la prestation de services de communication sur 24 sites en Afrique de l’Ouest et en Afrique centrale

L’accord de trois ans fait suite à plusieurs contrats octroyés pour le soutien de missions d’ONG en Afrique et au Moyen-Orient

HOUSTON, 9 mars 2018 /PRNewswire/ — ITC Global, un important fournisseur mondial de communications par satellite pour les environnements reculés et difficiles, a annoncé aujourd’hui le renouvellement de son contrat avec Plan International visant à desservir 24 sites à travers l’Afrique de l’Ouest et l’Afrique centrale. L’accord, qui établit la prestation continue de services de communication à distance et inclut une mise à niveau des systèmes électroniques de tous les sites, vient appuyer l’exécution de la stratégie globale de Plan International qui vise à mener un mouvement permettant à 100 millions de jeunes filles à travers le monde d’apprendre, de diriger, de décider et de s’épanouir. Le contrat fait suite aux contrats récemment octroyés à ITC Global par de multiples organisations non gouvernementales (ONG) couvrant les besoins en connectivité de plus de 80 sites à travers l’Afrique et le Moyen-Orient. ITC Global offre des services de communication permanents pour les activités de Plan International en Afrique depuis près de 10 ans, et le renouvellement de ce contrat témoigne de l’historique du partenariat et de la haute qualité des performances invariablement offertes par ITC Global. Plan International est une organisation de développement et d’action humanitaire à but non lucratif qui œuvre à faire progresser les droits des enfants et l’égalité des jeunes filles.

ITC Global - A Panasonic Company

L’accord établit la prestation d’un réseau personnalisé employant la technologie VSAT (« terminal à très petite ouverture ») afin de soutenir les activités locales de Plan International. En plus des antennes fixes de 2,4 mètres déjà en service sur ces sites, tous les composants électroniques des systèmes seront mis à niveau. Ces mesures nécessiteront que des techniciens locaux visitent les sites afin d’entretenir et de remplacer l’équipement au besoin, ce qui sera rendu possible par la présence locale d’ITC Global au Burkina Faso, au Ghana, en Guinée, au Nigéria et en République démocratique du Congo. Le renouvellement des composants électroniques sur le terrain sera terminé en 2018 et sera soutenu par la surveillance du réseau et l’assistance d’ITC Global tout au long du cycle de vie du contrat, 24 heures sur 24 et 7 jours sur 7.

« Les plus grandes ONG et organisations d’aide humanitaire font confiance à ITC Global pour répondre à leurs besoins critiques sur le terrain – qu’il s’agisse de répondre à des catastrophes naturelles ou d’améliorer la qualité de vie d’individus vulnérables ou de l’environnement », a déclaré Yagnesh Rajendren, vice-président de l’activité entreprises internationales chez ITC Global. « En établissant une connectivité vitale pour les personnes qui sont en première ligne, nous rendons l’excellence opérationnelle possible à travers des communications fiables et établies de manière permanente. Nous sommes heureux de faciliter le travail de Plan International en Afrique une fois de plus et nous sommes attachés à ce véritable partenariat que nous avons développé au fil des dix dernières années. »

« Nous avons choisi ITC Global pour continuer à fournir des capacités de communication pour nos activités en Afrique, car nous avons travaillé ensemble pendant longtemps afin de personnaliser le service, de sorte qu’il réponde parfaitement à nos besoins sur le terrain », a déclaré Bhavin Patel, responsable de l’infrastructure mondiale chez Plan International. « En tant que partenaire de longue date, nous avons confiance en la capacité d’ITC Global à fournir des solutions de connectivité innovantes à l’aide des dernières technologies, conçues sur mesure pour les activités humanitaires essentielles comme la nôtre. »

ITC Global fournit des services de communication à des ONG à travers le monde, y compris en Afrique, dans la région Asie-Pacifique, au Moyen-Orient et en Europe, et ce depuis plus d’une décennie. En 2017, ITC Global a obtenu et prolongé des contrats avec deux de ses clients principaux qui sont venus s’ajouter à son portefeuille d’ONG et d’organisations humanitaires, qui englobe des activités de terrain à grande échelle en Afrique. Ces organisations, qui exigent une connectivité permanente pour leurs missions à travers le monde, incluent une organisation humanitaire internationale offrant des services médicaux dans des régions affectées par la maladie et la guerre, ainsi qu’un groupe de conservation de la faune qui œuvre à protéger des environnements reculés présentant une grande biodiversité.

À propos d’ITC Global
ITC Global est un important fournisseur de communications par satellite pour les marchés de l’énergie, de l’exploitation minière, de l’industrie maritime et des ONG. Les entreprises qui exercent leurs activités dans des environnements reculés et difficiles nécessitent des communications avec une couverture mondiale et un service client sans faille. ITC Global permet d’améliorer la prise de décisions en temps réel ainsi que la gestion de la santé, de la sécurité et de l’environnement à travers une solution de communication unifiée, adaptée aux besoins de chaque client. Ces solutions incluent la conception d’un réseau personnalisé, la mise en œuvre matérielle, l’ingénierie sur site, l’assistance technique et la mise à disposition d’une bande passante par satellite de haute qualité. ITC Global exploite des réseaux d’opérateurs disponibles 24 heures sur 24 et 7 jours sur 7 en Amérique, en Europe, en Asie, en Afrique et en Australie. Elle est devenue une filiale de Panasonic Corporation en 2015. Pour de plus amples informations, rendez-vous sur www.itcglobal.com.

Contact :
Alix Anne Wright, directrice du marketing international
awright@itcglobal.com

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Kenya’s Political Leaders Talk Unity, Healing Divisions

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and opposition leader Raila Odinga met Friday in an apparent effort to settle months of violent post-election tensions. The meeting came just hours before a visit by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

In the surprise meeting, Kenyatta and Odinga agreed to work toward unifying the country after last year’s divisive presidential election.

The two � who, after their meeting, appeared together to give separate statements to the press � acknowledged the country was heading in the wrong direction.

Healing divisions

Odinga, who has refused to recognize Kenyatta as president, paraphrased U.S. president Abraham Lincoln. He said Kenyans needed to know where they are and where they want to go before they can better judge what to do and how to do it.

“Fifty-four years since independence, we are challenged to audit our progress toward the ideals for which our fathers fought to establish a free and independent country and for which many of our compatriots died.”

As leaders, said Odinga, they had a duty to reflect on their performance in reaching Kenya’s goals since independence: justice, unity, peace, liberty and prosperity for all.

Kenyatta said the two men came to a common understanding that for Kenya to come together, its leaders must come together.

“And this is what me and my brother have agreed,” Kenyatta said, referring to Odinga. “That starting today, we will begin a process of bringing our people together. That we will begin a process discussing what ails us and what creates division amongst us.”

Reconciliation panned

Miguna Miguna, a prominent Kenyan opposition lawyer and politician who was deported to Canada in February, denounced the Kenyatta-Odinga reconciliation.

In a statement posted to Facebook on Friday, he called the rapprochement “a fundamental betrayal of the innocent Kenyans who have lost their lives” supporting Odinga in several elections over the last decade.

Last fall alone, Kenyan security forces killed at least 55 people in election-related violence, according to Human Rights Watch.

Miguna, whose deportation was ruled illegal by Kenya’s High Court, said in his statement that he would return to Kenya on March 26 “to continue the struggle for electoral justice.”

Support for collaboration

On the streets of Nairobi, Kenyans also welcomed the leaders’ agreeing to work together.

It’s a really good step towards harmonizing the country,” said Brian Wanjoki, a pedestrian. “Because the electioneering period has left us divided … supporters of both sides. So, I think it’s a really good idea that they’ve met. And, hopefully we can progress from this.

Another man, Philip Ndung’u, also seemed encouraged by the leaders’ meeting.

Noting “the economy has been down,” Ndung’u said if the two “resolve their issues, well, at least it will show that we are moving forward and the issue to do with the election is it behind us.

Devil in the details

Kenya was plunged into political crisis after the Supreme Court annulled the August presidential election, due to irregularities, and Odinga and his supporters boycotted a second round in October.

Odinga refused to recognize Kenyatta’s win; in January, he held a rally where his supporters symbolically inaugurated the opposition leader as president. Observers feared further division would follow the provocative action and the government’s crackdown on independent television and the opposition.

Friday’s breakthrough came just hours before U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s first official visit Kenya.

That’s not a coincidence, said independent political analyst Martin Andati.

“The meeting must have been come out of pressure from the U.S. secretary of state,” Andati said. “… You know the West has been very keen on trying to get Uhuru and Raila to meet. So, it helps ease the political tensions….

While Andati called the agreement on unification significant for healing Kenyan politics, the devil will be in the details. We need to understand what exactly has been agreed upon, he said, noting the Kenyan leaders’ statements contained only generalities.

Source: Voice of America

South Sudan Suspends UN Radio Station

South Sudan has suspended a United Nations radio station for allegedly refusing to comply with the country’s media laws, although the station has not yet been taken off the air.

On Friday, the Media Authority, an independent body charged with regulating journalistic practices in the country, said it was shutting down Radio Miraya for “persistent non-compliance.” They said the radio station was “not immune” to oversight.

“Radio Miraya opted not be regulated or questioned. They are operating in an environment of their own but they operate in the Republic of South Sudan where there are laws that need to be observed,” said Elijah Alier, the Media Authority’s managing director at a press conference.

Alier said they’re not trying to censor the station but rather they are monitoring it for “hate speech and incitement.” The government may not be able to take the station off the air because the transmitter is on the U.N. base in Juba.

Amid South Sudan’s 5-year civil war, which has killed tens of thousands and plunged parts of the country into famine, freedom of the press has also been under siege.

Last year, at least 20 members of the foreign press were prevented from entering or kicked out of South Sudan, according to the Foreign Correspondents’ Association of East Africa. Local journalists have been detained, beaten, threatened and denied access to information and newspapers are censored, according to local media bodies.

Reporters without Borders ranked South Sudan 145th out of 180 in its 2017 World Press Freedom Index.

This is Radio Miraya’s first suspension since it launched in 2006. The United Nations is in discussions with the government over the action and it intends to keep broadcasting, Francesca Mold, spokeswoman for the U.N. in South Sudan, told The Associated Press.

U.N. must ‘cooperate’

Under the Status of Forces Agreement, between the U.N. and South Sudan’s government, the U.N. has the right to operate radio stations under its “exclusive control” and to convey information to the public relating to its mandate.

Civic groups are calling the suspension disturbing and are urging the Media Authority and the U.N. to “sort out their differences,” said Edmund Yakani, Executive Director of the Community Empowerment for Progress Organization.

Since being formed more than a year ago, the Media Authority has been a reliable regulatory body, with the number of local journalists being arrested decreasing significantly, said Edward Terso, general secretary of the Union of Journalists of South Sudan.

However, he said closing a media outlet indefinitely “deprives the public of access to information” and he is calling on the Media Authority to find a balanced and amicable approach to the situation.

Alier, of the Media Authority says only when the U.N. complies with the law will the station be allowed to return to the airwaves. “They won’t be on air until they cooperate,” he said.

Source: Voice of America

SOUTH AFRICA’S FINANCIAL AND FISCAL COMMISSION GETS NEW CEO

PRETORIA– The Financial and Fiscal Commission (FFC), the South African government’s principal adviser on matters related to inter-governmental fiscal relations between the national government and the provincial governments, has confirmed the appointment of Dr. Kay Brown as its Chief Executive Officer, effective from April 1, 2018.

Dr Brown previously held a position as a Chief Director at the National Treasury. In recommending her appointment, the Commissioners at the FFC noted her wealth of experience, knowledge and expertise in the comprehensive economic and fiscal governance, public policy and financial planning and systems arenas within the public sector.

“The appointment will reset the FFC as the economic and fiscal policy and governance knowledge-based public institution of choice for the South African State and society,” said the Chairperson of the Commission, Professor Daniel Plaaitjies.

The commissioners added that they are looking forward to Dr. Brown joining the FFC and wish her well with her new leadership and professional responsibilities.

“We have no doubt that the newly appointed CEO will bring professional integrity into the macro-economic, social, fiscal policy advice to all sectors of government and society,” Plaatjies added.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

Limpopo Government on outbreak of listeriosis in the Province

The Listeriosis outbreak was exposed in December 2017 and a multi-sectoral outbreak response was instigated by the National Department of Health. The Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi has made a pronouncement about the findings at a public media briefing on the 4th March 2018 and requested a full recall of all implicated processed meat products.

Listeria is a bacteria genus, which contains six species. It is a disease caused by Listeria spp.bacteria. Listeria monocytogeneis is widely found in the environment especially from the soil, water and vegetation and also faeces of a variety of animals. Up to 5% of healthy humans carry Listeria monocytogeneis in their gut. The primary source of infection in humans is from consumption of contaminated food and human to human transmission can occur from mother to child, either in utero or at birth. Cutaneous infections have been reported very rarely in vets/farmers following direct animal contact with ill animals.

A total of 967 cases have been reported since 2017, 11 additional cases that occurred in 2017 have been identified through laboratory review, and 8 additional cases have been reported to National Institute for Communicable Diseases. The outcome at the end of the hospitalisation is known for an additional 10 cases, bringing the total with known outcome to 967 patients. Total number of 183 patients are known to have died to date. Most cases have been reported from Gauteng Province (572) followed by Western Cape (115) and KwaZulu Natal Provinces (68). Cases have been diagnosed in both public and private health care sectors. Amongst 967 cases, 709 specimens that were positive for listeria monocytogenes on blood culture, while 208 cases were positive on cerebrospinal fluid.

Everyone can get infected with listeria monocytogeneis bacteria, however population that has the highest risk includes: pregnant women, neonates, immune-compromised person such as HIV positive individuals, cancer, renal disease, persons on immunosuppressive treatment, those who received transplant, diabetes, alcoholics, liver disease and persons above 65 years of age.

The National Department of Health found that the Enterprise foods’ biggest processing plant in Limpopo was the source of the present outbreak of listeria. The strain, which was found in large amounts of meat from the plant, matched the strain which had infected patients in Gauteng, where 60% of listeria cases have been found. The plant supplies Mpumalanga, Gauteng and North West.

The National Health department advised the nation to stop eating processed products such as Polony, Vienna and Russians. Retail giants such as Shoprite and Pick ‘n Pay have issued a recall of all food products found to have traces of killer bacteria listeria.

The Limpopo provincial government has engaged stakeholders such as Department of Health, Capricorn District, Department of Economic Development, Environment and Tourism, Chamber of business and the producers to work on the plan to dispose the products. The province visited the Polokwane Food Enterprise on the 5th March 2018 to engage management about the clearing of the products and the recalling strategy.

After successful meetings with all affected stakeholders and the food enterprise, the Polokwane Enterprise workers are now back at work, busy cleaning and disposing the products. The government environment practitioners and other private institutions are conducting further test to ensure that the environment is safe as well as the community.

The government will continue to meet with the food enterprise and stakeholders until the matter is resolved. The provincial government urge the public to return the processed food products to the retail outlets and clean their fridges with mild bleach solution.

Source: Government of South Africa