Published 06 July 2020 by Dr Iqbal Survé

Relatives hug through a ‘hug curtain’ at a nursing home in Sao Paulo. The long-term effects of limited human contact could hasten the merging of humans and machines, to our detriment, yet there are also advantages to a more tech-driven world, says Dr Iqbal Survé. Picture: EPA

Cape Town – History, a record of past events good and bad, is peppered with seminal moments of human advancement – think when man first invented fire, the wheel, the telephone, train, machines to enhance manufacture, space travel, the personal computer, mobile phone and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). The spoken word, to written, and now to voice activated communication and so on.

Each advancement compelled an adaptation of human behaviour. However, it is the current technological revolution, coupled with the global war against Covid-19, that can reasonably be said as driving the most dramatic reformation of human beings, at present. Whether this is a plus or a negative is yet to be decided – the outcome being firmly in the hands of each one of us.

Where once we took something as mundane as hugging and the public, physical display of affection for granted, we have been told to adhere to social distancing.

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Published 06 July 2020 by Siyavuya Mzantsi and Aziz Hartley

The listening device found at Dr Iqbal Survé’s office. Picture: Supplied

Executives of companies in the Sekunjalo Investment Holdings group have expressed their shock and outrage following the discovery their phones had been tapped.

Also tapped were the phones of some of Sekunjalo executive chairperson Dr Iqbal Survé’s family members. Charles Abrahams, a Cape Town lawyer rendering services to the group which includes companies such as AYO Technology Solutions, Independent Media and African Equity Empowerment Investments Limited, also suspects his phone has been illegally intercepted.

At the same time, a listening device was discovered in Survé’s office. AYO chief executive Howard Plaatjes said he had suspected that something was amiss after some of his calls started to sound scratchy, fell silent or began echoing.

Survé said the company would pursue criminal charges against those behind the interceptions. “I know that the media space is highly contested not just in our country but in the world, but the extent to which these people have gone to undermine, shut down, destroy Independent Media, the Sekunjalo group and myself is truly disgraceful.

“It is against all tenets of democracy, our Constitution and so sad that more than 25 years after our democracy, we should be dealing with these issues. I had thought all of this was behind me when one had to live under constant surveillance by the security police during apartheid,” he said.

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Published 02 July 2020 by Georgina Crouth

Valentine Dzvova was promoted to the hot seat of listed African Equity Empowerment Investments weeks before the Covid-19 lockdown. Photo: Ian Landsberg/African News Agency (ANA)

CAPE TOWN – Drawing strength from her mother, a resourceful professional who defied the patriarchal norms of her culture and time, Valentine Dzvova was promoted to the hot seat of a listed company weeks before the Covid-19 lockdown.

At a time of heightened fear and anxiety, when revenues were tanking everywhere, markets were shutting and the world became islands, Dzvova became the acting chief executive of African Equity Empowerment Investments Limited (AEEI), transitioning from bean counter to driving strategy in March.

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