Ramaphosa to open rail terminal, manufacturing plant in Durban

By LUYOLO MKENTANE |01 APRIL 2024 – 21:27

President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to officially open the Newlyn PX Terminal and the Tetra Pak Manufacturing plant in Durban on Thursday as part of his investment promotion drive. These entities made pledges through the SA Investment Conference, an initiative led by him, “with an ambitious goal of attracting R1.2-trillion in investments over five years”, the presidency said. “The multi-modal rail terminal in Bayhead next to the Port of Durban pledged R2bn for the development of the largest multi-modal rail terminal in Africa
and has completed the last phase of the development exceeding the initial pledge by R2.6bn,” according to the presidency. The Tetra Pak Group, the world’s leading food processing and packaging company with a presence in more than 155 countries, invested more than R500m in the manufacturing plant in KwaZulu-Natal in 2022. “Post the investment, the manufacturing plant is now the only state-of-the-art facility in Africa producing carton aseptic packaging for the domestic market and Africa export; meeting standards of sustainability; supporting a circular economy and propelling industrial growth,” the presidency said.

“These investments will form a critical industrial base for SA’s recent commencement of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), for export opportunities.” Build One SA (Bosa) leader Mmusi Maimane is expected to announce the party’s Gauteng premier candidate during an event in Soweto, Johannesburg, on Tuesday. Gauteng, which contributes nearly 40% to national GDP, is expected to be a battleground province in the May 29 election as opposition leaders including DA Gauteng leader Solly Msimanga, ActionSA Gauteng chair Funzi Ngobeni, EFF MP Mbuyiseni Ndlozi and Rise Mzansi national chair Vuyiswa Ramokgopa are positioning themselves to replace ANC Gauteng chair Panyaza Lesufi as premier. Bosa will use the event to launch its “Build Gauteng” campaign aimed at addressing socioeconomic crises buffeting the country’s economic and financial hub. Also on Tuesday, Rise Mzansi national leader Songezo Zibi is set to lead a picket at the department of employment & labour in Tshwane. “During our engagements with communities, Rise Mzansi has been asked to take up the plight of people over the age of 35, who are blocked from applying for jobs and opportunities by virtue of an arbitrary age barrier, which communities across the country describe as ‘ageism’,” said Rise Mzansi national communication director Mabine Seabe. Zibi, a former editor of Business Day, will be joined by members of the political start-up’s national leadership collective, volunteers and organisers.

The ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) is on Tuesday expected to honour the late struggle stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela by laying wreaths at her tombstone at the Fourways Memorial Park. The women’s league is expected, on the same day, to conduct a door-to-door campaign in ward 39 in Orlando West. It will also hold a candle lighting and prayer service at the same ward. Former president Jacob Zuma, who is backing the uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) party, has until Tuesday to lodge an appeal with the electoral court, if he so decides. This is after the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) last Thursday announced it had endorsed objections to Zuma’s nomination to stand for parliament. Zuma was nominated by his newly formed MK party as its No 1 candidate to the National Assembly despite his having a criminal record stemming from a 15-month prison sentence handed to him by the Constitutional Court after a contempt of court conviction in 2021. Section 47 of the constitution prohibits any citizen from becoming an MP if they have been sentenced to prison for longer than 12 months without the option of a fine. The electoral court is expected to determine appeals relating to candidates on April 9, with the final lists of candidates set to be published on April 10. Certificates of candidature will be issued to certified candidates on April 12. The IEC said the conclusion of the candidate nomination process would set in motion the printing of ballot papers. Public works & infrastructure minister Sihle Zikalala and deputy minister Bernice Swarts are on Wednesday set to host the Young Professionals seminar in Pretoria. The department’s programme seeks to address skills shortages and build skills capacity to support the built environment industry.