28 August 2012Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (FMCSA) has created 800 jobs in response to strong demand for increased production of its Ford Ranger pickup truck, which begins on 3 September.Training of employees to fill the extra positions at the company’s Silverton assembly plant in Pretoria and its Struandale engine plant outside Port Elizabeth began in June.This follows last year’s R3.4-billion transformation and upgrade of Ford’s South African manufacturing and assembly plants to produce and export its new Rangers to 148 countries, mainly in Africa and Europe.The Struandale plant expanded its annual production capacity to 75 000 engines and 220 000 engine component kits, and is the only Ford facility to share both component machining and engine assembly for the Duratorq TDCi diesel engine programme which supports the Ford Ranger.“In order to meet continued strong demand in South Africa and abroad, we are adding shifts to our operations, creating jobs and confirming our commitment to South Africa,” FMCSA chief executive officer Jeff Nemeth said in a statement.“We invested significantly to transform our operations, and it is our strong belief that these jobs have the power to transform people’s lives as well.”Nemeth said it enabled the empowerment of local communities which Ford operated in.“The main objective of training the potential new employees is to give trainees a better understanding of our industry and equip them with the necessary skills to take up positions in the plant and start building world-class Rangers,” he said.“Our enthusiasm for technical innovation is always tempered by our responsibility to the vehicle, to our customers and their safety.“We’re investing in the continuous training and education of our employees. Each one of the 800 potential new employees underwent comprehensive pre-employment assessment prior to the commencement of training.”Successful candidates were then given both classroom and on-the-job training to equip them to build the Ford Rangers.“As part of the One Ford plan, and to maintain a viable and strategic presence in southern Africa, we require a globally integrated supply chain and a highly trained workforce,” Nemeth said.“We are pleased with the investments in South Africa and we are committed to having world-class facilities and standards.”SAinfo reporter
25 September 2012South Africa should use the centenary of Alexandra to build a more united and prosperous country founded on the principle of ubuntu, President Jacob Zuma said as Johannesburg’s famous township marked 100 years of existence on Saturday.Alexandra was first proclaimed as a township for white workers who were removed from Johannesburg city centre in 1905. In 1912 the plots in Alexandra were sold to African and Coloured people with freehold rights, making the place a “native township”.“We must use this milestone to dedicate ourselves more than ever before to build a united and prosperous South Africa built on the foundation of ubuntu, dignity and respect,” Zuma said during Saturday’s celebrations at Alexandra Stadium.The President said the township oozed pride and resilience while it was also associated with well-known South Africans like Joe Modise and the Mahotela Queens.Stand up for rights ‘without losing dignity’South Africans needed to stand up for their rights without losing their dignity, he said. “South Africans are not hooligans, we are a nation of proud, respectful people who stand up for their rights and do so without losing their dignity and ubuntu.“We must promote this national pride as we don’t want the world to develop a wrong impression of South African people,” the President said, adding that societies needed to take stock and reflect at certain times.“We must not be shy to reflect on what has gone wrong within society in general,” Zuma said. “We’ve heard of shocking incidents of men raping little girls. This is not a society or nation we want.”The country needed to reflect on the causes of brutality and how this could be stopped, as the perpetrators came from within the community.“It’s a painful reality for every society to have to deal with, but we have to confront it. I believe we must have this discussion about the renewal of the social fibre of communities without delay.”‘Bring back culture of peaceful protest’Zuma urged society to bring back a culture of peaceful protest, of upholding the right to life.“The culture of violent protest which threatens lives and property have no place in a democratic society when people have a government that they can talk to through various structures. We cannot destroy that which we have built ourselves, and we cannot continue organising protests in which people die.”This, he said, called for serious reflection “among ourselves about the way in which we do things.”Zuma also warned against workers negotiating labour issues without labour unions.“Workers of Alex and anywhere in our country should not think that what happened in Marikana is the way to go. When workers chase away trade unions and negotiate their own deal with employers, that is a danger. Workers in the past didn’t have trade unions and they were not protected, they were victims of employers.”Earlier, Zuma visited the Nelson Mandela Yard Heritage Precinct to plant a tree. In 1940, Mandela left home in the Transkei and moved to Alexandra, where he found lodging with a local reverend before moving next door. The house, which had no water or electricity at the time, is on the corner of Richard Baloyi and 7th avenue.Source: SANews.gov.za
The Opposition in Punjab hit out at the Congress government on Friday, accusing it of not having any concrete policy to fight the drugs menace prevalent in the State. The criticism came a day after the State government brought back IPS officer Harpreet Singh Sidhu as chief of the anti-drugs Special Task Force, nearly a year after he was removed from the post following reports of a tussle between him and the then DGP. Leaders of the Aam Aadmi Party, the principal Opposition, said the State government’s decision of yet again change the STF chief shows lack of planning and concrete policy. “The Congress has been in power for over two years now, yet the problem of drugs continues unabated. It’s time for taking decisive action, but the government is busy in ‘cosmetic’ moves to save its face,” said senior party leaders Kultar Singh Sandhwan, Sadhu Singh and Gurdit Singh Sekhon in a joint statement here.CM targetedThe leaders also took potshots at the Chief Minister. “The government should give the reason why Mr. Sidhu was removed earlier and why now he is being brought back. While we do not question Mr. Sidhu’s determination towards his duty, the Chief Minister’s intentions are under cloud,” said the leaders.Punjab BJP chief Shwait Malik said that the purpose of setting up the STF was only to corner political opponents. “Replacing officers only proves that if anyone does not cooperate with the government’s whim and fancies, he or she should be moved,” he told reporters.
Indian cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has topped the chart for celebrity endorsements on television during the first six months of this year. From being captain cool to becoming the hottest celebrity as far as the numbers of endorsements are concerned, Dhoni has jumped the queue on some big names in the country. Dhoni is ahead of his closest competitor Shah Rukh Khan by eight endorsements and Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar by nine endorsements, Adex survey of TAM Media Research has revealed. As per the survey results, Dhoni has 24 companies to his name, well ahead of SRK’s 16 and Tendulkar’s 15, the other top endorsers on the list. The Indian cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni is the no. 1 celebrity endorser.Dhoni even took over the fairer sex’s appeal as superstars like Kareen Kapoor and Katrina Kaif stood far behind him. These actresses’ had a combined share of 45 per cent in the total endorsements of celebrities. During January to June 2010, Dhoni has done advertisements for a host of brands, including Reebok, Aircel, Godrej and TVS. Brighter future aheadIn July, Dhoni signed a Rs 210 crore deal with Rhiti Sports Management and Mindscapes to manage his long list of endorsements and brand associations for two years. The deal, the most lucrative in Indian cricket history, surpassed Tendulkar’s three-year contract estimated worth Rs 180 crore with sports management firm Iconix in 2006.