World Economic Forum (WEF) veteran, Dr Iqbal Survé, shares his thoughts on the eve of the organisation’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland which runs from 22-26 May.

Nearly 2500 leaders from politics, business, civil society and media from around the globe, are expected to participate in WEF’s first in-person annual meeting in more than two years.

The World Economic Forum (WEF) annual gathering gets underway this weekend. Whilst the work the forum does has not stopped in the intervening two years since we last met in person, it will be good to resume face-to face meetings and discussions, and I for one, am looking forward to the discourse to come.

Of particular interest, is a session addressing the growing services industry. This has also caught the eye of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), who for the first time in 20 years, has developed a framework to facilitate trade in services, an industry that accounts for more than two-thirds of global GDP.

It is also the fastest growing sector of the global economy.

Examples of these services include the likes of banking, telecommunications, tourism, and professional services. Access to these are essential – for everyone on the planet (along with food, water and shelter).

The WEF’s 2022 theme, Working Together, Restoring Trust punctuates where we find ourselves as a world at present, post pandemic and with an even greater challenge to advance long-standing economic, environmental and societal priorities and to forge a strong and everlasting egalitarian society.

One way in which we can advance solutions, is to work within a flexible framework for a multilateral trading system, as one size will not always fit all. Consequently, the WTO session to which I have been asked to contribute at next week’s WEF, will be a forum in which to discuss investment facilitation for developing and emerging market economies to take advantage of the growing services trade.

South Africa is not a signatory of the WTO’s Joint Services Domestic Regulation declaration which aims to increase transparency, predictability and efficiency of services providers to do business in foreign markets. So, to be invited to participate in this session, is a great honour, but it is also necessary.

Africa as a developing continent stands to benefit from the services industry, both as a generator and as a receiver of these facilities. It must have a seat at the table.

Underwriting all progress for Africa and Africans, will be access to financial services, without which, the continent will remain dependent on external support. Now is the time for us to work together, collaborate, learn from one another, and develop the skills with which to build a better future – for all of us.

Survé continues to be a regular Davos participant and served as the first chairman of the Global Growth Companies Advisory Board and vice-chairman of the Global Agenda Council (GAC) for emerging Multinationals, including his contributions to the Forum Advisory Board. Under his leadership, the Sekunjalo Group, has been recognised by WEF as one of the world’s fastest growing companies, aka ‘WEF Forum Members’.

By Iqbal Survé

PRESS RELEASE

It’s time to Take Back Your Saturday – forget about chores or being a couch potato, go out and have fun.

To help you reclaim your day off, Independent Media is publishing Saturday Live from this week.

The national 12-page lifestyle supplement will appear in the Saturday Star, Independent on Saturday, Pretoria News Weekender and Weekend Argus Saturday from tomorrow.

Even though it is a national supplement, readers can expect to keep up-to-date with specific events in their area.

You can win at being a weekend warrior, with the supplement as your guide to entertainment, fashion, food and lifestyle events and generally, how to have a happy Saturday.

Some of the best lifestyle journalists who have their fingers on the pulse of all that’s “hip and happening” in South Africa, will be contributing to the supplement.

Comedian Tumi Morake is one of our regular columnists and of course, Independent”s top lifestyle journalist, Nontando Mposo.

The head of Independent Media’s Lifestyle division, Mbuso Khoza, says Saturday Live will be anchored by a mix of local, national and international trends, fun ideas and luxury events.

“The concept for a national supplement was realised after our research showed that many people spend long hours doing mundane chores over weekends, instead of doing what they would love to. The weekend is meant for fun, and what better time to have fun than on a Saturday. Saturday Live is going to inspire you – to Take Your Saturday Back”.

Independent Media Executive Chairman Dr Iqbal Survé congratulated Khoza and her team for conceptualising and designing a supplement which fits comfortably with the aims and objectives of Independent Media.

“We cannot escape from the reality that our lives are complex and time is minimal.   This supplement will help steer you to a great day and a great weekend. Because it has such a wide reach, I am pleased to see that the supplement will focus on hyper-local events, and national take outs. It is going to appeal to most of our readers.

“The team epitomizes all that we stand for at Independent Media:  innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship,” Dr Surve’ said.

Ends

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Independent Media Corporate Communication

PRESS RELEASE

Independent Media today launched its internal Office of the Ombudsman along with a fully constituted adjudication and appeals panel in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and Cape Town.

The formal launch of the Office of the Ombudsman follows the adoption of Independent Media’s Press Code, which took place after months of robust engagement and development.

Speaking at the launch, Dr Iqbal Survé, Executive Chairman of Independent Media, said the group remains totally committed to the self-regulation of the media and is vehemently opposed to any state regulation of the media.

“We are completely and utterly opposed to a media tribunal in South Africa.  We will not support the involvement of the state in the media. Our need for freedom is important and this must be cherished. Our withdrawal from the Press Council and the appointed of our internal Press Ombud should not be construed as support for a tribunal. It is unnecessary and undemocratic and goes against our Constitution”, said Dr Survé.

He said that the media can regulate itself provided it has the correct calibre of people which we can be seen from the constitution of Independent Media’s Press Ombud Office and Adjudication and Appeals panels.

The Adjudication Panels will be chaired by Independent Media’s Group Ombudsman Jovial Rantao, who was appointed into this position in October last year.  Rantao is one of the most experienced editors in South Africa. He is the chairperson of The African Editors Forum and the Southern African Editors Forum.  The Appeals Panel will be chaired by retired Constitutional Court Judge, Zak Yacoob, a respected jurist, human rights lawyer and judge recognised all over the world for his legal acumen and experience.

Rantao said the publication of the Code was an important moment in the history of Independent Media, one of the major pillars of media in South Africa. “This is the editorial bible for all our journalists and is our pledge to our readers and the general public, to uphold the highest standards of journalism. We will hold editors and journalists in all our titles accountable on behalf of the public. We will act without fear or favour,” Rantao said.

Independent Media’s Press Code was developed after engagement with the Press Council on various matters and, in particular, the reintroduction of the waiver clause, ended in an impasse. The removal of the waiver by the Press Council had the unintended consequences of involving Independent Media and other media houses in potential excessively costly litigation. The Independent Media Press Code addresses this anomaly.

Rantao highlighted three major differences between Independent Media’s Press Code and that followed by the Press Council:

  • No complaint shall be accepted unless the complainant or the person affected by the publication has waived his or her rights to institute an action or application in any court or any other tribunal.  The waiver shall be unequivocal and in accordance with a prescribed form that the complainant would be required to fill in;
  • any person other than a natural person, a registered non-profit organisation or a Public Benefit Organisation, shall pay a refundable deposit of R5 000 before the complaint will be considered. The deposit will only become payable if no settlement is reached.  If the complaint is upheld substantially, the deposit will be refunded to the complainant; and
  • the complaint will be referred to the regional editor who will attempt to broker a solution or settlement within 14 days. The regional editor will only entertain the complaint if the complainant has submitted full particulars as well as a copy of the offending article; identified reasons for the complaints; identified which rights have been breached and what, if any, harm has been suffered as a consequence of the publication. If there is no settlement, the regional editor would then advise the complainant to approach the Independent Press Ombudsman and outline the procedure to be followed. The Independent Media Press Ombudsman will decide if a ruling can be passed based on the documents submitted by the complainant and the editor or whether a hearing should be held.

Following a nationwide public call for participation, Independent Media also announced the members of its Adjudication and Appeals panels.

ADJUDICATION PANEL

CHAIRPERSON: JOVIAL RANTAO

REGION MEDIA REPRESENTATIVE PUBLIC REPRESENTATIVE
KZN Brijlall Ramguthee

 

Michael Celumusa Buthelezi

 

GAUTENG Prof. William Gumede Advocate Nthabiseng Mokoena
WESTERN CAPE Ryland Fisher Paul Gregory Esselaar

 

APPEALS PANEL

CHAIRPERSON: JUDGE Z. YACOOB

REGION MEDIA REPRESENTATIVE PUBLIC REPRESENTATIVE
KZN Dennis Pather

 

Fortunate Ngcongo
GAUTENG Rich Mkhondo

 

Lloyd Mogotsi

 

WESTERN CAPE Mansoor Jaffer Ronald Bernickow

Dr Survé encouraged the millions of South Africans who read Independent’s titles to make use of the Office of the Independent Media Press Ombud for resolution of their concerns.

To view the Press Code go to http://www.iol.co.za/press-code

Complaints can also be directed to: complaints@inl.co.za