INDABA Newsletter | July 2015

Press Club continues to host newsmakers

The National Press Club continues to be a credible news platform, regularly hosting the newsmakers of the day.

In June the club hosted a briefing where the Tourism Business Council of South Africa elaborated on the effects that the new visa regulations have on the travel and tourism industry, referring to a report by Grant Thornton.

We also hosted a briefing with the Minister of Police, Nkosinathi Nhleko, on the on-going Nkandla issue and his findings on the matter.

Members are encouraged to approach the secretariat with proposals for news briefings, which are then considered by the executive committee.

The briefing on visa regulations was chaired by Deputy Chairperson Tanya de Vente-Bijker (second from left).

Nunu Ntshingila to head up Facebook’s first African office

Based in Melrose Arch, Facebook opened its first African office to further the company’s commitment to help businesses connect with people. Ogilvy veteran, Nunu Ntshingila, will be the company’s new Head of Africa.

Facebook’s active user population in Africa has grown 20 percent to 120 million in June 2015 from 100 million in September 2014. More than 80 percent of these people access Facebook from their mobile phones.

“We are inspired by the incredible ways people and businesses in Africa use Facebook to connect. This momentum in Africa comes on top of strong advertiser partnerships and excellent adoption of our products across all regions. In Q1 2015, 52 percent of our total ad revenue came from outside the US and Canada. But we’re just getting started,” says Nicola Mendelsohn, VP, EMEA, Facebook.

“Mobile is not a trend; it’s the fastest development in communications we’ve ever seen. This couldn’t be more true in Africa – where so many people are mobile-only. This new office is a significant milestone for Facebook and our teams want to partner with businesses across the continent,” Mendelsohn adds.

Helping businesses grow

“Our new African office will support our customers across the continent. We know that a one-size-fits-all approach won’t work when it comes to building products and solutions that address diverse needs on the continent, which is why we are committed to creating solutions tailored to people, businesses and specifically for African markets,” says Ari Kesisoglu, Regional Director, EMEA at Facebook.

Kesisoglu continued, “Our priority for the next few months is to continue the work we are already doing with some clients in this region. We will work more closely with businesses and agencies to understand the challenges, so that we can build solutions that help grow their business. People increasingly want to be connected to the world around them and desire information about new services and products to better their lives. At the same time, businesses need stronger, more flexible and less fragmented ways of reaching people in sub-Saharan Africa. Our mission will be to connect brands and consumers in Africa, creating value for all parties in the process.”

Growth markets

Facebook will initially focus on growing its business in anchor countries in the major regions of sub-Saharan Africa: Kenya (East Africa), Nigeria (West Africa), and South Africa (Southern Africa). Other supported territories include Senegal, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia, Mozambique and Ethiopia.

Facebook will partner with governments, telecom operators, agencies and other stakeholders to deliver localised solutions to advertisers and users continent-wide. It will continue to focus on tailoring solutions, metrics and ad formats to the needs of customers and advertisers in the mobile-first, mobile-only African environment.

Nunu Ntshingila is the head of Facebook�s new African office.

Press club addresses Boston’s Teachers Forum

Press club exco member Simone Heradien, Senior Editor at Rekord, recently addressed the Boston City Campus & Business College Teachers Forum.

The forum is held to introduce teachers from various schools to Boston.

Heradien addressed the audience on the current status of press freedom in South Africa, what the law says and how we compare with other countries.

Boston’s journalism department, including its students, actively participates in press club activities and we look forward to continue this relationship.

Boston’s Teachers Forum

Scholarships for journalism courses available

Midcareer journalists from several developing countries can apply for a scholarship to attend a Radio Nederland Training Centre (RNTC) course in the Netherlands.

The Netherlands Fellowship Programmes (NFP) are accepting applications for journalism courses at the training centre. NFP is funded by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs and run by the Netherlands Organization for International Cooperation in Higher Education.

RNTC is offering several courses for journalists:

  • Mastering Story in Documentary-Making (25 Nov 2015 to 19 Feb 2016)
  • Using Media for Development (18 to 29 Jan 2016)
  • Producing Media to Counter Radicalization (18 Jan to 5 Feb 2016)
  • Video Journalism (12 to 26 Feb 2016)
  • Broadcast and Multimedia Journalism (15 Feb to 4 March 2016)

Candidates must be from one of these countries: Afghanistan, Mali, Albania, Nepal, Bangladesh, Mozambique, Armenia, Nicaragua, Benin, Myanmar, Bolivia, Pakistan, Bhutan, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Peru, Burundi, Palestinian Territories, Cambodia, Philippines, Colombia, Rwanda, Cuba, Senegal, Djibouti, Somalia, DR Congo, Sri Lanka, Ethiopia, South Africa, Egypt, Sudan, Ghana, South Sudan, Eritrea, Surinam, India, Tanzania, Georgia,Thailand, Indonesia, Uganda, Guatemala, Zambia, Kenya, Vietnam, Jordan, Zimbabwe, Yemen, Macedonia and Mongolia.

NFP fellowships cover travel costs, accommodation and the course fee.

The deadline to apply for the fellowship program is July 24.

Registration deadlines for the individual courses vary.

View more information

Diarise the Percy Qoboza memorial lecture

The fifth annual Percy Qoboza memorial lecture will be held on Monday, 19 October 2015.

Presented annually by the National Press Club in collaboration with the Department of Communication Science at Unisa, the lecture commemorates 19 October 1977 – or Black Wednesday – when the apartheid regime declared illegal 19 Black Consciousness organisations, banned two newspapers and detained scores of activists.

The World newspaper editor Percy Qoboza and other journalists were subsequently arrested and jailed.

Today 19 October is known as National Media Freedom Day.

Press club members are requested to diarise this morning event – more detail will be announced soon.

Percy Qoboza, editor of The World, was arrested on 19 October 1977.

New members

The National Press Club welcomes the following new members:

Bongani Lukhele – Dept of Trade and Industry, Sandile Xasp – Discovery Limited, Courtney Africa – Independent/Cape Times, Xolani Cele – eNCA cameraman, Joel Sekgoela – Public Investment Corporation, Khutsahalo Matlhare – Vaal Metro Press, Joanne Danvers – Boston Media House, Chad Thomas – ChaiFM, Zikhona Lihle – Boston Media House, Lizette Odendaal – Tshwane University of Technology.

We look forward to seeing you at a press club event soon!

Thank you for paying membership fees

Thank you to those press club members who have paid their membership fees for 2015.

However, despite numerous reminders, a number of members have not yet paid their fees and will be removed from the membership list.

Membership fees are R250 for full members, R400 for associate members and R120 for student members.

Members are requested to use their surname as reference when payment is done, so that it can be picked up easily by the secretariat.


Please send any news, suggestions or information for this newsletter to Martin van Niekerk at the secretariat on, 082 257 0305. Website | Facebook | Twitter