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SABC News launches commercial opportunities
9 July 2018, 1:22 PM

SABC News has undertaken a complete overhaul  – this through re-imaging and re-branding across all its platforms.  The bold move seeks to ensure that the News division of the public broadcaster will be a premium source of News in South Africa and the continent.

Group Executive for News and Current Affairs Phathiswa Magopeni talks about the new look and sound of SABC News:

For an in-depth look at the changes and new offerings, as well as commercial opportunities, see below.


Read more in  SABC Connecta  below:






SABC Connecta June’18 (Text)

I hear colour, says the world’s first cyborg
2 July 2018, 12:22 PM

I hear colour, says Neil Harbisson , the world’s first cyborg  who has an antenna  in his head.

Harbisson was born with a rare condition called achromatopsia, making him colour blind and only able to see the world in grayscale. To experience colour, he developed an antenna, got a doctor to implant it into his head – connect it to his brain and enables him to hear the sound frequency colour.

He is now able to distinguish colour through sound.

I didn’t want to change my sight, but I wanted to have a sense of colour, says Harbisson.

The 33-year-old Irish born Harbisson recently delivered the keynote speech at the SAS Africa Road to Artificial Intelligence Road Show in Johannesburg.

Some consider his use of technology as advancement in artificial intelligence (AI) or what he refers to as Artificial Senses (AS).

[Watch] Neil Harbisson explain how he got an antenna implanted into his head

“When I was able to sense all the visual colours, I didn’t see why I should stop there. There are many colours that exists that the human eye cannot sense, but the technology can sense like infrared and ultraviolet.

He then decided to include infrared and ultraviolet perception in the system in his head.

Since he senses infrared, Harbisson can tell if there are movement detectors in a room. He can tell if the alarms are on or off in a shop or a bank for example.

“I didn’t want to wear technology, I wanted to be technology,” says Harbisson.

Harbisson : “We are all different shades of orange”

Harbisson says he was shocked to discover that black people and white people are actually all orange.

“People who say they are black are actually really dark orange and people who say they are white are actually very light orange,” says Harbisson.

He says the fact that people are referred to as ‘black’ and ‘white’ is completely false.

“We are all different shades of orange’, says Harbisson.

[Watch] Neil Harbisson on race : we are all different shades of orange



He is physically connected to the internet.

Harbisson is physically connected to the internet. His friends are able to send ‘colour’ in audio form directly to his head using an internet connection.

[Watch] Neil Harbisson ‘s friends are able to send ‘colour’ in audio form directly to his head


I am no longer human : Harbisson on being a  transpecies

 Harbisson forms part of a growing number of human beings around who are using technology to enhance their abilities.

He is the co-founder of the Cyborg Foundation and the Transpecies Society in Barcelona which aims to help people become cyborgs and defend their rights.

“We call it the transpecies society because we are adding senses and organs that are not traditionally human.”

The Cyborg Foundation and the Transpecies Society already has over 400 people who mostly identify as transpecies.

“In my case, the definition of ‘human’ no longer defines me a 100%. I don’t feel human 100% because there’s an organ, an antenna which is not typically human and I have infrared and infrared perception which is not typically human. The definition of “Human’ no longer defines me that’s why I feel more  comfortable defining myself as a transpecies  because I have these senses that are not traditionally human.


The ethical question?

Neil Harbisson struggled to find a hospital or a doctor that would perform the surgery to implant an antenna into his head. Many doctors deemed the act unethical.

He however believes that it is better to change oneself to adapt to the world one lives in as opposed to changing the world to fit the needs of the humans.

“I think we shouldn’t be against this. I think in the future we’ll see this as ethical. Designing ourselves is ethical. If you look at our history, we’ve been a species that has been changing the planet and designing the planet in order to survive. I think this is wrong. We should be designing  ourselves and modifying ourselves in order to survive.

If we all had night vision for example, we shouldn’t be changing the light of the planet, we wouldn’t be using artificial light. Cities at night would be completely dark, the earth at night would be dark because we would be able to see and that means we would be spending so much energy creating artificial light and this would be better for the environment,” he says.

Harbisson says if human beings  could control  their our own temperature, there would be no need to  change the temperature of the planet. Instead of using heaters and air conditioners, humans would  be able to regulate our own temperatures”

“So I think it is ethical to design ourselves, because the more we design ourselves the less we’ll have to change the planet and this would be much better for the environment, for other spices and for us as well as a species,” says  Harbisson.


SAS’ Vice President, Desan Naidoo says the adoption Artificial intelligence is growing in South Africa.

Naidoo notes how  people  are increasingly using AI to make decisions in both business and their personal lives  as opposed to only relying on gut-based decisions.

“The digital economy is infiltrating each aspect of our lives on a daily basis from banking to shopping to learning and even dating,” says Naidoo.

[Watch] SAS Vice President, Desan Naidoo talking about AI and the digital economy

New NW Premier promises stability, service delivery
22 June 2018, 11:54 AM

The new Premier of the North West, Professor Job Mokgoro, has promised to work with all political parties in the province to bring about stability and service delivery.

Former premier Supra Mahumapelo resigned last month, following violent protests by residents, some of whom were accusing him of corruption.

Mokgoro, who was nominated by the ANC, gave his maiden speech after being elected unopposed in the provincial legislature in Mahikeng.

“As we differ as political parties, the one thing that is common denominator among us – are the people of this province, especially those marginalised communities. For their sake I would like to assure this honourable House of my commitment to work with all parties so that we achieve the goals and objectives of the NDP. And indeed in this context the function of robust oversight is very critical, if we’re to maximise our efforts in delivering to our people.”

Professor Job Mokgoro, the ANC’s candidate, was elected unopposed as the new premier of the North West. He replaces Supra Mahumapelo who resigned last month from the position, and yesterday as a member of parliament.

Judge president Monica Leeuw presided over the election of the new premier.

“I am satisfied that the nomination is properly completed and duly signed. And I ask for any other nomination, and seems there were none. And since there’s no any other nomination, I now declare the Honourable Job Tebogo Mokgoro elected as the new premier of the North West province.”

B.H.F welcomes NHI Bill, Medical Schemes Amendment Bill
22 June 2018, 10:49 AM

The Board of Healthcare Funders of South Africa (B.H.F) has welcomed the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill and the Medical Schemes Amendment Bill, announced by Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi on Thursday.

The bills will complement each other and aim to ensure universal access to health care by all South Africans. They will also repeal over 200 items of health legislation which are inconsistent with the Constitution.

However, Managing Director of the Board of Healthcare Funders, Dr Katlego Mothudi, says there is still a lot to work to be done before NHI can be implemented:

Mothudi  says he hopes to see a focus on improving the quality of  public sector facilities and  to bring them up to the required standard to qualify to provide healthcare.

“Will there be rationing? Yes, rationing exists. Currently in the public sector is long queues etc. In the private sector there are benefit limits,” says Mothudi.

“We’ve had a series of complaints about members who’ve sort specific treatments like for cancer, and they’re told this is not covered or their benefits have run out. So there’s a lot of work that is required to be done from both public side as well as the private side,”  says Mothudi.

Health minister briefs media

Health minister Aaron Motsoaledi has released details of two bills — the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill and the Medical Schemes Amendment Bill in Pretoria. The bills will complement each other and ensure universal access to health care by all South Africans. The bills will also repeal over 200 health legislation which are inconsistent with the Constitution.

The year 2018 to 2022 is the second phase of the implementation of National Health Insurance. Minister Motsoaledi announced that the two bills have been gazetted and open for public comments.

Motsoaledi, accompanied by officials from his department, including Health Ombudsman, Professor Malegapuru Makgoba, says the need for universal access to primary healthcare influenced implementation of National Health Insurance.

He says that every citizen needs access to quality health care in order to reach their full potential and that to achieve this – fair and equitable financing of health care is inevitable.

“As it is now generally accepted, the cost of private healthcare is out of reach for many citizens, even the well to do ones. The presentation of the WHO and the OECD stated that, contrary to beliefs, only 10 per cent of SA’s population can afford what is being charged in private healthcare. Hence the amendments we are introducing today are meant to provide much needed relief to patients finding themselves in serious financial hardships.”


[Watch] Discussing National Health Insurance


[Watch] Mokgoro’s swearing in as North West Premier
22 June 2018, 10:49 AM

ANC Premier candidate for North West, Professor Job Mokgoro, swearing  in is underway in  North West .

Mokgoro was picked by a special ANC national working committee this week after a series of consultative meetings over who should fill the vacant position left by Mahumapelo. An analyst from North West University Professor Andre Duvenhage spoke well of Mokgoro as seasoned administrator who brings a wealth of experience.

70-year-old Mokgoro holds a master of public administration degree from the University of Toledo in the US. His former colleagues at the North West University have praised Mokgoro’s track record.

Mokgoro served in several boards of State owned enterprises in the province and advised former Premier Mahumapelo in many portfolios of governance. Mokgoro will serve as premier until next year’s general elections.



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