MEDIA CONTACTSMargaret DingaloDirector: Stakeholder RelationsBrand South Africa+27 11 483 0122The Bree Street Taxi Rank, Noord Street Taxi Rank, Gandhi Square, Jabulani Mall and Maponya Mall in Johannesburg are the places to be on 11 May to join Brand South Africa’s celebrations of 30 days to kickoff of the 2010 Fifa World Cup.Download the press releaseA day-long procession through the city will be led by the People’s Bus and will include a Joburg Tourism rig, Harley Davidson bikers and the Metro Police. Starting at Mary Fitzgerald Square in Newtown, the procession will make its way to Maponya Mall in Soweto, joined by South African celebrities Arthur, Chomee, Slikour and Sugarmaxx.The people of Johannesburg will be able to join the procession along the way, with prizes to be won.“We encourage South Africans to be great hosts,” says Brand South Africa chief executive Miller Matola. “Let’s show the world our warmth, friendliness and love of the game. We should all fly the flag, sing the national anthem with pride, learn the Diski Dance and celebrate Football Fridays.“Bring along your Diski Dance moves, as well as your knowledge about all things football. Most of all though, bring all your uniquely South African passion and energy.”The People’s Bus will provide an interactive 10-minute tour including Fifa World Cup team facts and trivia, foosball table fun and a mini cinema showing unforgettable moments from previous tournaments. On exiting the bus, good luck messages that will be posted on the Brand South Africa and Bafana Bafana websites can be added to the bus message board.Catch the procession at the following times and places:08h30-09h00: Bree Street Taxi Rank, Newtown09h30-10h00: Noord Street Taxi Rank, Newtown11h00-12h00: Gandhi Square, Newtown13h00-14h00: Community drive through Zola and Jabulani Mall surrounding areas in Soweto14h30-15h30: Jabulani Mall, Soweto17h00-18h00: Maponya Mall, SowetoAbout the International Marketing Council of South Africa (Brand South Africa)The International Marketing Council of South Africa (IMC) was established in August 2002 to help create a positive and compelling brand image for South Africa. At that time, the world was unsure about what to think of South Africa, with many different messages being sent out by various sources. These did very little to build the country’s brand and it was evident that to attract tourism and investment there was a need to co-ordinate marketing initiatives to make them more effective. This led to the creation of the IMC, whose main objective is the marketing of South Africa through the Brand South Africa campaign. There are many benefits to having a consolidated brand image, with the most important being that a consistent Brand South Africa message creates strategic advantages in terms of trade and tourism for the country in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
Streetlights using light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are designed to last longer and use less energy than conventional lighting, but it’s not working out that way in at least two U.S. cities. Thousands of lamps installed in Detroit have failed prematurely, prompting a federal lawsuit against the manufacturer, The Detroit News reports. The Public Lighting Authority’s suit against Leotek Electronics USA claims that 20,000 or more of the LEDs are dimming or burning out long before they were supposed to, and that the agency “expects a system-wide failure of Leotek’s luminaries in the short term.”RELATED ARTICLESAre LEDs Worth Their Extra Cost?Congress Plays with the Light Bulb MandateLEDs Could Get A Lot CheaperFuture of LEDs: Lower Cost, Higher Efficacy Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan says it may cost as much as $9 million to correct the problem. The LEDs were expected to last at least 10 years. As part of an overhaul of the city’s lighting system, the city signed a deal with Leotek in March 2014 to buy more than 25,000 E-Cobra model LEDs in a variety of wattages for $3.9 million. Installing the lights was to cost about $5.2 million. In all, Detroit has about 88,000 streetlights, 40% of which didn’t work when the city undertook the upgrade. The lamps came with a 10-year warranty. Last fall, routine inspections turned up a number of lamps that were “charred, burned or cracked,” the newspaper said. Leotek initially acknowledged the problem and said it would work with the city to correct the problem. Leotek’s failure to follow through prompted the lawsuit. Leotek did not have a comment on the suit immediately but a spokesman said the company planned to issue a statement on the dispute. Similar problem reported in California Detroit isn’t alone in experiencing problems with Leotek LEDs. In Berkeley, California, Leotek has agreed to replace failing LED fixtures that are under warranty after higher-than-expected failure rates over the past year, Berkeleyside said in an online article in February. Berkeley began replacing high-pressure sodium lamps with 8,000 LEDs in 2014. The LEDs were supposed to last between 15 and 17 years but the diodes in some of the lamps began failing last year. That left those streetlights burning, just not as brightly, and that prompted a number of complaints from residents about poorly list crosswalks and roadways. Berkeleyside said said Leotek accepted responsibility for the failures and had offered to pay for replacement lamps. Who paid for the labor to install the new fixtures was up in the air. A call to the city’s spokesman was not returned. The good news was that Leotek was updating the lights with a more efficient model that should save the city another 25% in energy costs when compared to the originals. The city borrowed $3 million from the California Energy Commission to buy the streetlights and uses the more than $400,000 in annual savings to pay off the loan, The Daily Californian said. But no problems in Portland, Oregon Portland, Oregon, is another city that replaced its high-pressure sodium lamps with LEDs from Leotek, but in contrast to Detroit and Berkeley it hasn’t had any unpleasant surprises. “They’re performing really well,” Bureau of Transportation spokesman Dylan Rivera said by telephone of the 45,000 LED streetlights the city has installed. The city said the new lights would draw 29 watts, a 75% reduction from the 118-watt sodium vapor lights it had been using. The lamps could be expected to last for 24 years (100,000 hours of operation), which represented a sizable maintenance savings. Rivera said the new streetlights were performing up to Portland’s energy expectations and the conversion represents the largest single carbon reduction strategy the city has put in place. “Generally speaking,” he said, “people seem happy that we’re doing this.”
Mumbai: Launching the ‘Shiv Sampark Abhiyan’ from Aurangabad, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday announced a campaign called ‘mee karjamukt honar (I will be debt-free)’ for farmers across Maharashtra. Mr. Thackeray’s visit to inspect the party’s organisational condition in the Marathwada region of the State has raised eyebrows in political circles, as it is seen as Sena’s preparations for mid-term Assembly polls.“We demand a farm loan waiver for farmers of Maharashtra. We have always said this, and continue on our position. We are launching our campaign to make farmers debt-free. The concept and execution will be disclosed in a party meeting in Mumbai within a few days,” said Mr Thackeray.When asked whether his visit and the organisational reshuffle were signs of possible mid-term polls in Maharashtra, Mr. Thackeray said he always prefer to keep his “army of Shiv Sainiks” ready. “Organisation building is a continuous exercise,” he said. During his visit, Mr. Thackeray held meetings with leaders from Marathwada, a region where the party is dominant. The Sena chief reportedly sought names of new faces from the region who are leading from the front, giving rise to the speculations.Commenting on the ongoing Tur procurement crisis in the State, Mr. Thackeray asked the government to change the rules, if necessary, to ensure all Tur is purchased. “The CM had said that the last grain of Tur would be purchased. It is now time to live up to that promise,” he said.
At a time when technology decides the way we communicate with others, a remote village in Odisha is using a makeshift gong to communicate important information to the villagers.Paasa, a small village in Tajungia panchayat, is located on a hilltop at distance of around 35 km from Daringbadi in Kandhamal district. One has to walk up 3 km to reach this village as it is not connected by a proper road. It is out of reach of mobile phone networks as well. For more than five months now this village has been functioning without electricity supply as the defunct transformer has not been replaced.In such a situation, the sound of the gong continues to be a means of communication for around 35 tribal families living in the village. They have made the gong with a piece of metal left behind during the electrification work in the village. It is fixed to a pole.Sound ideaAccording to the village community leader, Kumar Sunamajhi, in case of an emergency like need to carry a patient or a pregnant woman to a hospital, the gong is beaten eight to 10 times. It is beaten once when someone dies at the village. To call the villagers to attend the funeral, the gong is beaten twice. For a call for village meeting, the gong is beaten five times. If the gong is beaten thrice, it is a call to the villagers to attend a mass prayer at their small church.Nagara Majhi, a resident of Paasa village, said the gong has united the residents of the village as they immediately come to know about important events and emergencies due its sound.
The BCCI is under scanner of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) over alleged violation of FEMA during the IPL auctions. The contentious issue is the base fee agreed upon between the BCCI and 72 foreign players. The forex payment guarantees are in clear violation of FEMA or the Foreign Exchange Management Act. Documents obtained by Headlines Today show that the total base fee guarantee extended by the BCCI was worth 13.4 million dollars or Rs 62 crore. The foreign exchange guarantee was given by the board without permission from the RBI. Foreign exchange transactions made during IPL 2 in South Africa too are under the scanner. These transactions were made with entities like Cricket South Africa and the sponsors. The BCCI had advanced 2.5 million dollars to enable budgeted costs of Cricket South Africa. Several transactions made to persons residing outside India and the sources of these funds too are being investigated. Juhi Chawla under scannerMeanwhile, Juhi Chawla, a co-owner of the Kolkata Knight Riders, has come under the scanner for alleged FEMA violation. An ED note accessed by Headlines Today reveals that 40 lakh shares of Chawla were transferred to a Mauritius-based company. The shares were transferred at par in violation of FEMA. The norms stipulate that since the shares were that of an unlisted company, they should have been valued by a chartered accountant. The ED report also cites similar irregularities in Kings XI Punjab and Rajasthan Royals.