Feedback on SAMSA’s investigation on the Thandi investigation

The South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) investigation into the near sinking of the small passenger vessel “Thandi”, on 15 September 2017, has been completed. Robben Island Museum (RIM), who charted the ferry to transport passengers to and from the Island, has commended SAMSA on their detailed and swift investigation.

“The report has helped us evaluate our current safety procedures and to provide an even better and safer experience for all the visitors to the Island,” says Mava Dada, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of RIM. “Safety is and always has been our main priority. Based on the learnings highlighted in the report and our own internal assessment, we will be implementing a number of additional safety measures to further improve the current safety protocols,” adds Dada.

One of the key drivers that led to the incident was as a result of the weather conditions. To take even further precautions to the current weather assessment, RIM will install additional wind monitoring equipment on the Island so that actual wind conditions can be monitored in Cape Town and at Robben Island. RIM will also be appointing a Harbour Master for Murray’s Bay Harbour at Robben Island.  RIM will ensure and insist that all ferries are fitted with wind monitoring equipment, which will also be frequently monitored during trips.

As an additional precaution, RIM has updated its systems and processes for the monitoring of weather conditions and weather warnings. Steps have been taken to improve the frequency and quality of reports as well as the interactions with masters with regard to weather conditions. RIM are engaging with Transet National Port Authority to agree on added reporting processes.

Over and above the existing regulatory framework, which RIM already complies with, RIM will carry out additional assessments of all their vessels serving Robben Island; this is to affirm their suitability for continued operations, and to enhance safety measures as well as add to the comfort of passengers and crew.  These additional restrictions will apply to both the current vessels and any future vessels that RIM may engage or operate.

RIM will carry out further investigation into the type and characteristics of vessels that are sustainable, reliable and comfortable to provide a consistent passenger and crew experience in the unpredictable and sometimes severe weather conditions of Cape Town. RIM is determined to ensure that the vessels serving Robben Island are of a type, size and condition that supports the provision of a reliable, safe, comfortable and world class service to visitors.

There are a number of improvements and changes that RIM have already implemented. Visitors to and from the Island are scanned prior to the commencement of every voyage. Each visitor needs to show identification when boarding a ferry, a similar process as to when you board an aeroplane.

“We recognise and commend the recommendations made by SAMSA with regards to the possible changes to the regulations and legislation relating to passenger ferry operations, which will play a significant role in ensuring both higher quality vessels, as well as improved quality of operations.

“We assure visitors to Robben Island that the measures already in place, and the updated safety measures now being implemented are such that visitors are assured of the best possible safety standards on all our vessels,” concludes Dada.

‘’On the 15th September 2017 the small passenger vessel “Thandi”, a third party owned and operated vessel chartered by RIM to ferry passengers, took on water after departure from Robben Island, resulting in difficulties which prompted the master to request urgent assistance from emergency services, with the ultimate safe evacuation of all passengers and crew. All passengers and crew were safely transported back to Cape Town.

Thandi is not currently in commission.

For more information on Robben Island and daily tours, please visit

“Wake-up this is Your Sub-Conscious speaking”

Caption: Sharon Sinclair, Founder and Chief Executive Operator (CEO) of Chandramala has been working with corporate teams since 2008 helping them to get aligned to the business’ strategic intent using the scientific methodology of Dr Levin.


Sharon Sinclair is a woman carving out a niche in corporate organisational practise across the business spectrum with a unique and highly successful business model. Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Chandramala, Sinclair makes use of the scientific alignment methodology, as pioneered by Dr Jeff Levin, an international authority in the field of Energy Medicine.


This principle allows Sinclair and her team to identify the root cause of emotions surrounding internal cognitive thought processes and implement the positive growth into a diverse corporate business framework.


The Cape-Town-based Sinclair boasts a stellar financial background and the synergy using emotional evolution aligned to sound economic principles equates to the formulation of a progressive, empirically proven technique; one that sets Chandramala apart from competitors across the African continent.


A former engineering financial manager, this dynamic businesswoman has seen a gap in the market and provides world class services in the fields of Client Centricity, Customer Service Excellence, Conflict Resolution as well as building and sustaining Client Relationships.


The self-motivated, energetic Sinclair started practising her unique set of skills in 2008, and has developed into a leading edge thinker with an old-school business mentality. Sinclair officially launched her own brand name, Chandramala in 2013 and her distinctive methodology has grown exponentially.


Sinclair has strong ties to the economic market. Over the past decade, the dynamic businesswoman has transformed the traditional standardised practises into a robust fluidity in an ever-changing business landscape.


The alignment process she brings into a business structure allows for effective congruence by tapping into a client’s sub-consciousness; thus freeing up internal roadblocks, augmenting cohesive behaviour and providing a seamless transition. This process allows the employees to express their inner strengths and dilute negative energy.


To survive profitably in an ever-increasing competitive workplace, Sinclair offers an intensive internal system-analysis and paves the way for purposeful action.


The advanced holistic business philosophy is ideal for medium to large companies and brings together a multitude of key business indicators that harness a company’s potential, through a breaking down of cultural barriers and the rebooting of mind sets.


Sinclair’s methodology has helped break down the ‘silo factor’ often seen in business sectors, and her strategic development process identifies means to reconnect and rebuild business alignment.


The advancement of technology often creates an uncertain work-force as every six months rapid expansion makes current systems obsolete. The only way to cope with an ever-changing world is to tap into a self-actualised business model, perfectly suited to adaptability.


“The business world may be growing at an exponential pace and this can be quite daunting but human nature and its ability to adapt and evolve is innate, it is an ingrained part of our psyche, we need only open the door to our subconscious and tap into our limitless ability,” says Sinclair.


Once a business assessment has been made, a specialised and highly trained team of coaches, mentors, consultants and psychologists will formulate a strategic business solution.


The service provides one-on-one or team dialogue and mentoring, detailed reports and a deluge of pertinent information.


“The internal workshop with our team helped us to set an agreed common mission and vision statement for the company. During this session everyone had an opportunity to voice what they thought we did well and what needed attention,” says Gauteng-based Megan Stark Managing Director of CubicIce who has been providing Specialist B2B Digital Marketing Services for the past 30 years. “Having a shared vision has allowed us all to get onto the same page and to have a laser focus of where we are heading to as a company. It helped me to identify some of the not so obvious team dynamics and relationships.” adds Stark


“Human nature is to strive further, carve out a piece of internal paradise and become pioneers in what we do,” adds Sinclair.


Sinclair has a foothold in all the major cities across South Africa and will be looking to grow the business from 80 existing clients to a plethora of opportunities.


Unlocking the psyche of the soul has limitless potential. Tap into Chandramala and take your business to the next level, humanity demands it.


For more information about getting your team onto the same page, contact Sharon Sinclair on, or visit

Share the joy this festive season

Help the Mustadafin Foundation put smiles on the faces of vulnerable children and orphans this festive season.

“Every child deserves a happy, healthy childhood and the opportunity to build a brighter future. Let’s share the blessings by giving special educational gifts to children in need,” says Ghairunisa Johnstone-Cassiem, Director of Mustadafin Foundation.

Child poverty is one of the hardest things to observe. When considering the Western Cape alone, orphans and vulnerable children are faced with numerous challenges such as high levels of poverty, living in child-headed households and suffering from trauma associated with drug and alcohol abuse, gangsterism and crime. According to statistics*, South Africa has over three million orphans. Mustadafin Foundation has taken up the battle to protect these children by establishing programmes that help reduce the rate of poverty in communities and improve their lives in practical ways.

For the past 31 years, the Mustadafin Foundation has distributed and hosted Christmas lunches for sick children at Red Cross Hospital and for disadvantaged communities in Mitchell’s Plain, Brooklyn, Khayelitsha and many other parts of the Western Cape. This year the organisation will also be helping children from Grabouw, a farming community notorious for its extreme poverty and high unemployment rate.

The Mustadafin ‘Toy and Stationery Drive’ aims to assist 1 000 orphans and vulnerable children this year. By giving toys and stationery gifts to children, it will ease the financial pressure put on poor households to purchase essential school items at the start of the new school year.

“We hope to distribute toys and stationery gifts to 500 children in Tafelsig, 200 in Grabouw, 100 in Khayelitsha, 50 in Hanover Park, 50 in Manenberg and 100 in Delft,” says Johnstone-Cassiem.

Support the Toy and Stationery Drive by donating new, wrapped or unwrapped gifts for children who might not otherwise receive a gift. “Unwrapped gifts will be wrapped and distributed to children between the ages of three and 16 years old. Gifts can be dropped at 30 Turfhall Road in Lansdowne. Arrangements can be made for large quantities of gifts to be collected,” mentions Johnstone-Cassiem.

Gift ideas

  • 0 – 5 years: dolls, teddy bears, baby clothes, bath toys, nursery rhymes, puzzles, action figures, books, colouring sets, pencils, crayons
  • 6 – 9 years: educational toys, stationery (colouring sets, books, pencils, crayons, school sets), puzzles, word searches
  • 9 – 12 years: games and toys, stationery, books, clothing, gloves, scarves, hats
  • 13 – 16 years: books, gloves, scarves, hats, school shirts, toiletries

To partner with this initiative and find out how you can donate or for more information about Mustadafin Foundation, contact 021 633 0010 or WhatsApp on 0795673645 or visit


Know where your waste goes

Each piece of waste has the potential to pollute the environment in a different way, which is also the reason why there is no single suitable waste management approach to address all types of waste. The waste management hierarchy1 ranks waste management options in order of preference according to the type of waste, and therefore the Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa (IWMSA) recognises the importance of putting emphasis on the hierarchy in its upcoming its flagship conference, WasteCon 2018.

“It is important that the cycle of waste, from consumer to final disposal is governed by the internationally accepted waste hierarchy, which through its successful application can have several benefits, such as pollution reduction, resource conservation, and job creation,” says Jan Palm, President of the IWMSA. “The application of the waste hierarchy most often starts in households with consumers,” Palm adds.

Household waste can be separated into three parts: solid waste that can be recycled, organic waste (food and garden), and non-recyclables; each type requiring different recovery, treatment and/or disposal methods. Recyclables are repurposed for commercial use, while organic waste should not be landfilled, but rather used to make compost or biogas. Non-recyclable waste is either landfilled or sent to a Waste-to-Energy (WtE) facility to be thermally treated to produce electricity.

“One of the primary waste management challenges today is ensuring that the different types of waste are adequately sorted so that it can be subjected to the correct recovery, treatment or disposal processes,” says Palm. “By being mindful at home and separating waste into its correct category, you are helping to prevent waste from ending up where it does not belong; contaminating the natural environment,” adds Palm.

Have you ever wondered how good South Africa is at sorting and recycling their waste? Looking at a common consumer item, the plastic bag, which is quickly becoming known as South Africa’s unofficial national flower, is one of the biggest environmental burdens posed on coastal and ocean environments. The Ocean Conservancy’s 2017 Coastal Clean-up report2 indicates that during the 2016 effort to clean-up South Africa’s coastlines, plastic bags ranked as the fifth most picked up item. Four out of the top five items picked up all include plastics (plastic bags, food wrappers, beverage bottles and caps), most of which could have been recycled. “Another challenge is that once these items are picked up off beaches during clean-ups most recycling depots are reluctant to accept them as they are dirty and require further sorting and cleaning before they can actually be recycled,” says Palm.

“As we [IWMSA] continue to monitor the waste situation in our country, I would like to encourage all consumers to prevent waste where possible and to give upcycling a try,” encourages Palm.

The topics of ‘zero waste lifestyle’ and upcycling are trending more than ever on social media platforms nowadays. Living a zero waste lifestyle may seem like a challenge, however it can be a great opportunity to cut out short term use items such as plastic bags and bottles, and replace them with environmentally responsible reusable items. By doing this you have just taken a personal step up the waste management hierarchy.

If you feel like you need some guidance on your waste management have a look at the IWMSA’s training schedule, or register for WasteCon 2018 which will provide a wealth of insight into applying the waste management hierarchy. To submit an abstract to be considered to present a paper at WasteCon 2018, visit the Abstracts page on the WasteCon 2018 website.

For more information on the Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa visit You can also follow IWMSA on Facebook ( and Twitter (

15 new road bicycles for Masiphumelele youngsters

[CAPTION]: Fifteen avid cyclists from Songezo Jim’s Cycling Academy are excited about trying out the brand new bicycles sponsored by the Rotary Club of Claremont, with helmets and kit from the Pedal Power Association (PPA), on Friday, 03 November 2017. The Academy is run by South Africa’s most famous black cyclist, who hails from Masiphumelele. The new bikes (pictured above) effectively double Songezo Jim’s stock of bicycles which are ridden under his watchful eye by eager young girls and boys who aspire to be like him one day.

“We’ve got really talented kids cycling here in Masiphumelele. They’re already winning league races in Cape Town and want to become professional, they even want to beat me! There is some stiff competition,” joked Jim, whose interest in cycling started when he was a teenage spectator watching cyclists compete in the Cape Town Cycle Tour (CTCT). Jim turned professional in 2013 and became the first black South African cyclist to compete in a World Tour event, the Vuelta a Espana in 2015.

During the school holidays Jim, together with the Bicycling Empowerment Network (BEN) will run a cycling development programme for young boys and girls from Masiphumelele. The programme, aimed at novice cyclists, will include the basics of learning to ride a bicycle as well as road safety and bicycle maintenance. With such a high level of interest in cycling, Jim says that all bikes at his Academy are used on a rotational basis in order to cater to as many children as possible. The most promising cyclists will be selected to ride the new bicycles in the CTCT next year.

The Rotary Club of Claremont have a long association with cycling in Cape Town, having been involved in organising race day logistics for the CTCT for the past 34 years. The Club, together with the PPA are equal stakeholders in The Cape Town Cycle Tour Trust, who are responsible for organising the world’s largest timed cycle race. The charitable surplus from the race, which sees 35000 cyclists compete, is shared between the Rotary Club of Claremont and PPA.

Speaking at the handover event, Rotary Club of Claremont President Elect, Malcolm Dodd said,

“The funds used to purchase these bicycles come from the money raised through the Cape Town Cycle Tour and so it is fitting that we use a portion to invest in enabling even more people to experience the thrill of cycling around the Cape peninsula whilst also learning valuable life skills.”

The 109 kilometre race, which will be held on Sunday 11 March 2018, passes Masiphumelele en route to the finish line in the Cape Town city centre.

“The people of Masiphumelele live along the official route and are often seen cheering cyclists with great enthusiasm on race day. We are thrilled to partner with Songezo in his dream to train youngsters to ride, leading by example and giving them a reason to hope for a better future,” says Dodd.

Last month the Rotary Club of Claremont partnered with PPA, BEN and Qhubeka to supply 20 bicycles to Ukhanyo Primary School in Masiphumelele. These bicycles will also be used to teach youngsters how to ride and the basic rules of the road. “We look forward to expanding the footprint of cycling in Masiphumelele and the surrounding Fish Hoek Valley,” concludes Dodd.

For more information on Rotary Club of Claremont and the various community projects and initiatives they are involved with, please visit

If you treasure it, measure it

You can’t manage what you don’t measure.” ~ W. Edwards Deming, scholar and teacher in American academia.

Many organisations are daunted by the idea of exposing themselves to reputation research that will give them the cold hard facts. Little do they realise that by validating their ‘gut’ feeling with numbers helps them to put SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely) action plans in place to ultimately have a stronger, solid and more balanced reputation. An organisation’s reputation should be nurtured and maintained, and every 12 months may be a good idea to take stock to ensure that the organisation’s reputation is steered in the right direction.

The benefits of conducting research are endless. “Reputation management is like exercising for the Comrades. Unfortunately, you will not finish the race if you haven’t worked on a training programme, geared yourself with the right running shoes or adjusted your diet to make sure that it matches your training and individual needs,” says Regine le Roux, Managing Director at Reputation Matters. “It all starts with becoming research fit and assessing what the organisation’s strengths and weaknesses are,” she explains.

A holistic look should be taken at all aspects of the business to determine what is building or breaking down its reputation. Reputation Matters developed a model called the Repudometer® that scientifically measures organisation’s reputations, based on an assessment of ten elements of the business that impacts reputation. These elements include leadership, employees, strategic partnerships, value offering and communication aspects.

“Reputation is all about perceptions. Regardless if the perceptions are based on the truth, they form the realities of your key stakeholders. It is important for organisations to realise that different stakeholders can make different assessments and that not all role players will share the same view of your business’ reputation,” says Le Roux. “When businesses measure their reputations, it shows that they are interested in fostering a relationship with their stakeholders and deem their inputs as important in looking for ways to build even closer, mutually beneficial relationships.”

Le Roux shares three tips for organisational research engagements:

  • Don’t think that reputation research will require you to send yet another survey. Depending on the needs, organisations could consider conducting focus groups or telephonic interviews.
  • If you decide to go the questionnaire route, be smart about it and combine some of the questions from your satisfaction surveys distributed throughout the year as to avoid that stakeholders get too many emails and get survey fatigued.
  • Research does not have to be an expensive or tedious process. Research organisations have different research packages for your needs and to accommodate different budgets. It could also be a painless exercise when working with a company that has a sleek process in place that includes a proper brief to confirm the who, what, where, when, why and how questions.

“With a quantifiable reputation score, you would be able to present figures to your management team that will have a much greater impact than the softer issues that communication management is usually associated with. If you truly treasure your organisation’s reputation, you should measure it and put strategic action plans in place to help take it to the next level,” says Le Roux.

With the Festive Season drawing near, Reputation Matters is offering organisations the opportunity to invest in a Reputation Check, a short check list to determine the health of their reputations, while at the same time giving back to a charity of their choice. “Organisations that invest in the Reputation Check over the November and December period this year will be gifted an additional Reputation Check to give to their registered charity of choice. The results will enable the businesses to help take their reputation to the next level and improve their relationships with their key stakeholders,” concludes Le Roux.

Champions of transformation awarded

These are the best of the best in black business, the champions of transformation in South Africa: the winners of the 2017 Big Time Strategic Group Black Business Quarterly (BBQ) Awards. The 16th instalment of the BBQ Awards, held at Emperor’s Palace, Ekurhuleni on Friday, 20 October 2017 was an extravagant celebration of the men and women who are taking South Africa forward. Pictured above is Fatima Vawda, founder of 27four Investment Managers, receiving the Comair Outstanding Woman in Business Award [High res images available on request; photo credit Julian Cole]..

Attendees at the 2017 BBQ Awards were dressed to impress as they walked the red carpet for the illustrious awards ceremony. Guests had the privilege of rubbing shoulders with A-list celebrities, top business leaders and prominent politicians. Celebrity TV presenter, socialite and radio personality Somizi Mhlonge was the programme director for the evening. “The event is trending at number three [on Twitter]!” said an excited Mhlonge during the festivities. “These are the things that have to trend. Let’s make these successes very cool,” he said.

“The Big Time Strategic Group BBQ Awards are very important for us as a people, as a black nation, as young entrepreneurs, as organisations and organised business, and as a country looking to go all the way into the future,” said Justice Maphosa, CEO of Big Time Strategic Group, naming sponsor of the event. “Today as we meet here, we are saying to those who win the Awards, ‘Thank you for making us proud’.”

Baleka Mbete, Honourable Speaker of the National Assembly, emphasised in her keynote address that South Africa must continue to prioritise transformation in all spheres of life, from government to small business, to benefit everyone. “May you progress to even greater heights in your business ventures,” she wished the award nominees. Jeff Radebe, Minister in the Presidency for Planning, Performance, Monitoring, Evaluation and Administration, also congratulated each nominee for their exceptional contribution to the world of business and encouraged them to help develop others: “The true value of any award cannot be realised unless the winner contributes toward the development of their own communities. In this regard, I believe the BBQ Awards remain an important endeavour in supporting our business community.”

The winners of the 13 category awards were greeted by uproarious applause:

  • LTE Holdings Best Established Black Business Award: Travel With Flair (a black-owned South African travel management company)
  • Hennessy Businessman of the Year Award: Calvin Mathibeli (CEO of Calvin and Family Group)
  • The Innovation Hub New and Innovative Business Award: Geekulcha (a development platform for South Africa’s leading young tech minds)
  • Comair Outstanding Woman in Business Award: Fatima Vawda (Founder and Managing Director of 27four Investment Managers)
  • Ledwaba Mazwai Attorneys Public Sector Visionary Award: Chief Justice of South Africa, Mogoeng-Mogoeng
  • Emperors Palace Community Builder of the Year Award: Lindiwe Matlali (Founder and CEO at Africa Teen Geeks)
  • Kaya FM Transformation Champion of the Year Award: Coega Development Corporation (State-owned company specialising in industrial development)
  • Topwatch Best Employer of the Year Award: Buna Projects and Consulting (a multi-disciplinary company specialising in engineering and full turnkey projects)
  • KIA Young Business Achiever Award: Emmanuel Bonoko (Founder of Ebonoko Foundation)
  • New Entrepreneur Award: Inga Vanqa (Principal Director at Inga Vanqa Quantity Surveyors and Project Managers)
  • CSI Ubuntu Award: Youth Leadership and Entrepreneurship Development (an organisation that assists youth on their academic, social, entrepreneurship and career paths)
  • Iqhawe Mentorship Award: Felleng Yende (CEO of FP&M SETA)
  • Big Time Strategic Group Platinum Award: Felleng Yende (CEO of FP&M SETA)

The BBQ Awards are South Africa’s longest-running and most prestigious transformation awards. For more information on the 2017 BBQ Awards, visit or follow them on Facebook (@BBQAwards) and Twitter (@BBQ_Awards).

Delegates share best practice and latest technology at Landfill 2017

CAPTION: Delegates were treated to a demonstration of landfill equipment on the Buffelsdraai Regional Landfill site at the end of the second day of the Landfill 2017 “Back to Basics” conference.

Leaders in the waste and environmental management industries gathered at the Buffelsdraai Regional Landfill site in KwaZulu Natal for Landfill 2017. A number of interesting presentations and workshops fascinated the delegates who were eager to network at the most important landfill event of the year.

The KwaZulu Natal Landfill & Waste Treatment Interest Group (LaWTIG) of the Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa (IWMSA) hosted the three-day event which concluded on Friday, 20 October 2017.

“This was the first time that we hosted Landfill at a real landfill site, with much positive feedback from delegates who thoroughly enjoyed the live demonstration of landfill equipment,” says Jan Palm, President of the IWMSA.

Rod Bulman, of Phelamanga, shared from his experience in conducting public participation meetings before landfill sites can be established. “Communities responding to a landfill site in their midst vary from resigned, reluctant, arms-length tolerance to hostile rejection,” says Bulman. “Often the ‘not in my backyard’ syndrome is predominant in a number of waste public participation processes, which is countered by the ‘if not here, then where?’ response.”

Alan Bamforth, of ABG, presented a simple, cost effective capping solution for rural landfill sites. “Attempts to cap with a simple layer of polymer film and cover soil have led to slope failures. One solution is the phytocap or water balance cap, but this has limited suitable climatic conditions,” says Bamforth. He presented a development of the phytocap, the Barrier Drain, which is a barrier layer and drainage layer in one. This development extends the scope and technical performance to such an extent that the phytocap can be considered as a fully competent capping system.

A presentation on the long-term plans to dispose of municipal solid waste in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro were shared by Hillary Zuze and Anton de Wit. Michelle Muller, of Aurecon spoke about understanding waste streams and the importance of adhering to relevant legislation when conducting risk assessments.

“This year’s conference has been a huge success and we are thrilled at the interest from delegates in the fascinating presentations we have heard thus far,” concludes Palm.

For more information visit the Landfill 2017 event website page. To find out more about the Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa visit You can also follow IWMSA on Facebook ( and Twitter (

Significant growth for black-owned businesses in Saldanha Bay

Saldanha business owner, Suleiman Adjiet, has grown his transport company from just one taxi in 1998 to 20 taxis and 12 cold storage freezer trucks today. The growth of his business is largely thanks to procurement policies at Sea Harvest where investing in local black suppliers is a high priority.

Welmarie Coetzee, Sea Harvest Procurement Manager, explains:

“Long before enterprise development and supplier development were included in calculating broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE) scores, Sea Harvest was investing in black businesses in Saldanha Bay.”

The fishing company, which listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) in March this year, has an overall B-BBEE score of 97%. “We are committed to doing more than just ticking the boxes,” says Coetzee. “As the single largest employer in Saldanha Bay, we are invested in this community. We want to see the area develop with new businesses as our own company continues to grow. Last year we spent over a hundred million Rand doing business with local small- and medium-sized suppliers on the West Coast, of which sixty-five million was with majority black owned businesses.”

Sea Harvest’s sea-going staff are transported to and from work by Adjiet’s taxi business, which started with one driver but now employs 20 drivers. In 2004 the business-minded Adjiet had sufficient capital to diversify and start another company, SHR Transport. He bought a cold storage truck and started pitching for contracts to deliver Sea Harvest’s frozen hake to Cape Town. Today he is responsible for transporting frozen hake across the country.

Meanwhile, Mornay Kurtz is the owner of MCK Engineering, which has grown exponentially thanks to Sea Harvest’s procurement strategy that favours local black suppliers. “Mornay started doing welding and vessel maintenance for Sea Harvest 10 years ago with a staff complement of five. As he proved his reliability, we gave his business further opportunities and he won more contracts. Now he has 35 employees,” says Coetzee. Kurtz is just as keen as Sea Harvest to create employment opportunities and, in January this year, he opened a technical training school to teach welding skills to young apprentices. There are 54 apprentices at the welding school. “He just wants to plough back into the community, share his own knowledge and skills, and give people hope to find work,” says Coetzee.

A further example of how Sea Harvest is supporting new black enterprises, is its procurement of stevedoring services from Enlee Traders, a 100% black-owned local business. Enlee is responsible for off-loading fish from vessels as soon as they dock. “Enlee was a family-operated business that has grown tremendously. When they first started, they only supplied services to Sea Harvest. Now we are but one of their clients and they are winning tenders with other big companies on the West Coast. I’m so excited for them to expand their client base because I’ve been a part of their business journey by guiding them with their books, how to cost items, and to grow the company,” says Coetzee. Enlee now employs 70 permanent staff and another 120 casual staff.

Business advice and coaching for entrepreneurs running small and medium sized enterprises is critical for sustained economic growth. To formalise this mentoring process, Sea Harvest, together with other corporates based on the West Coast, established the West Coast Business Development Centre (WCBDC) 19 years ago. “The Centre assists people who have a business dream, with the technical skills and mentoring support required to turn it into a reality,” explains Coetzee, who is the Chairperson of the WCBDC Board. In the last financial year, WCBDC serviced 4648 people and helped 490 people to register new businesses.

“When local businesses thrive, the whole community benefits. It is rewarding to play a small role in helping Saldanha Bay residents grab hold of business opportunities and succeed as they create sustainable work opportunities for many along the West Coast,” concludes Coetzee.

For more information about Sea Harvest, visit

Celebrating the success of one vaccine on World Polio Day

Tuesday 24 October 2017 is World Polio Day. With much debate regarding vaccines, and a small but vocal group lobbying against this form of health protection, the Rotary Club of Claremont urges everyone to celebrate World Polio Day by recognising the great success that one vaccine has had towards eliminating an incurable but preventable disease.

Wild poliovirus is an infectious disease that occurs mainly in children, targeting the nervous system and causing paralysis. In the 1980s, 1000 cases of polio were reported globally every day. This figure has been reduced by 99.9 percent to just 37 reported cases of polio last year.*

Liz Rose, President of the Rotary Club of Claremont and a former Community Nurse, commented on the success of the vaccination campaign to stop polio.

“The Global Polio Eradication Initiative is a public-private partnership between Rotary, the World Health Organisation (WHO), UNICEF, the U.S. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and governments around the world. Together, through global collaboration, much has already been achieved to eradicate this disease,” says Rose.

The Rotary Club of Claremont has donated a total of R350 000 to Rotary International’s Polio Plus Project, which aims to totally eliminate polio, over the past six years. This year the Club is donating R100 000 towards the Project.

The virus has been eradicated globally except in Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan where transmission of the virus has not been successfully stopped yet. “Geographical isolation, poor public infrastructure, armed conflict and cultural barriers are all factors that make it difficult to prevent transmission of the disease, and until polio is totally eradicated, all countries remain at risk of outbreaks,” says Rose. South Africa has been polio-free for over 20 years, due to immunisation against polio as part of the normal vaccination schedule, as well as periodic specific campaigns in which booster doses are given to children. Healthcare workers are vigilant in detecting any signs of paralysis in children.

“The end is in sight, but we are not there yet,” says Tom Bergmann-Harris, Past President of the Rotary Club of Claremont and former UNICEF representative who has worked closely on many polio eradication campaigns over the years. “Smallpox has been eradicated through huge effort and now it only exists in laboratories. Polio is very close to becoming a success story, like smallpox, but much is still required to totally eliminate the disease. We must not slow down now, we must see it through to the end,” says Bergmann-Harris.

“We must ensure that not a single child is left unvaccinated. Polio is incurable but completely vaccine-preventable. While we celebrate World Polio Day and the success of the vaccine, we are equally aware that the fight is not yet over,” concludes Rose.

[Photo credit: Rotary International. High resolution image available on request]

For more information on Rotary Club of Claremont and the various community projects and initiatives they are involved with, please visit

* Rotary and Polio document, link available at