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Honourable Members, our economy needs significant investment in both agriculture and manufacturing. The Department's investments to date have assisted the agricultural sector to improve its export products. We will also continue to expand our mLab initiative beyond Gauteng and the Western Cape.

MLabs play a vital role in helping entrepreneurs and SMEs in the ICT sector to take advantage of the growing mobile application economy, providing young people with opportunities to gain highly sought after coding skills, participate in industrial research and development and establish new businesses. This is in line with creating new skills required in the fourth industrial society. We will continue to undertake and coordinate research in the human and social sciences that informs policy through the Human Sciences Research Council. The study will also identify the prevalence of behavioural and social factors that put South Africans at risk of contracting the virus.

These include alcohol and substance abuse, circumcision status and high-risk sexual behaviour. Members of the Portfolio Committee on Science and Technology recently had an opportunity to visit the AgriProtein fly farm, which uses technology to convert waste into nutrients for animal feed. The Department, through the TIA, invested R11,9 million to expand this facility from a tiny research site in Stellenbosch to a full-scale factory of about 10 square metres in the heart of Philippi.

Chairperson, the facility in Philippi, an economically distressed area, has secured approximately 85 million US dollars for licencing and rolling out the technology locally and internationally. An additional two plants are being developed in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal. Furthermore, in our quest to support industry, we intend to launch a fully operational photonics facility. To this end, we are working on the development of a low-cost, robust and reproducible miniaturised rangefinder for the archery industry, as well as the second prototype for a fingerprint sensor that can extract 3D internal fingerprints from both live and latent fingerprints.

Last month, I launched a 3-kilowatt hydrogen fuel cell system at Poelano Secondary, a disadvantaged school on the farm Goedgevonden in Ventersdorp, North West.

This project demonstrates to learners, teachers and the community that science can solve socio-economic problems, especially in rural areas. The project was implemented through our Hydrogen South Africa Programme, which uses platinum group metal resources, and innovative hydrogen and fuel cell technologies, to enable the development of high-value commercial activities. We will continue to pursue solutions in the public transport sector, using HySA technology in support of the Department of Trade and Industry programme to roll out hydrogen fuel cell buses in metropolitan areas.

An amount of R67 million is set aside for the continued implementation of our hydrogen strategy. The pilot was informed by the many young and unemployed innovators who use local resources to develop promising technologies and solutions outside of formal institutions.


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We plan to expand this initiative through a technology exchange platform with India to enable grassroots innovators from both countries to co-develop technologies and access new markets. Our initiatives on innovation to support basic service delivery have been rolled out in various parts of the country. These communities are enjoying access to clean water and sanitation through innovative technologies deployed by the Department, such as smart geysers and low-pour flush sanitation. To this end, we will continue to work with both the South African Local Government Association and the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs to enhance the capacity of municipalities to leverage innovation in the delivery of basic services.

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Our contribution towards the interlinked challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment will, among others, be directed towards lifting the country's economic growth rate over the medium term. We have budgeted an investment of R million over the next three years in targeted initiatives to advance the implementation of the Advanced Manufacturing Technologies Strategy. This includes support for the development of the titanium, composites, additive manufacturing and fluorochemicals industries.

A further investment of R million will be made for a flagship intervention as part of the Advanced Metals Initiative in the key area of value-addition and beneficiation. The Department also aims to lift economic growth through initiatives such as the technology stations programme, the grassroots innovation programme, and various community-based economic development initiatives. We also managed, over the last five years, to secure joint investment of more than R million by the Department of Trade and Industry in seven Sector Innovation Funds that are developing critical capability in vital industry sectors.

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We plan to use the European Union's budget support investment of R million over the next three years to further advance the Sector Innovation Programme, in particular by scaling up successful service delivery innovations and establishing strategic partnerships with European institutions. Our support for small and medium enterprises continues to grow. TIA is allocated R,6 million to increase technological innovation in the economy through support for research, development and commercialisation by higher education institutions, scientific councils, public entities and private companies.

Solar Turtle has enabled leading banking institutions such as Nedbank to take their services to remote rural areas of the Eastern Cape using portable shipping containers powered by solar panels. Her company has secured contracts from the European Union to provide these facilities to our neighbour, Lesotho.

Our international portfolio continues to grow through increased access to global knowledge, resources and capacity to advance the objectives of our national system of innovation.

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An allocation of R million is made to our International Cooperation and Resources Programme to invest in initiatives that support international cooperation in science and technology. Consistent with South Africa's foreign policy priority, we will continue to focus on the advancement of the African agenda in science and technology, in support of programmes such as the Southern African Development Community's Industrialisation Strategy. We will leverage South Africa's leadership role as Chair of SADC to undertake a number of initiatives, including a comprehensive energy technology foresight exercise.

Other continental flagship initiatives to be supported, notably in cooperation with the National Research Foundation, include the planned Oliver Tambo Research Chairs to be established with South African support at leading African universities, as well as the African Open Science Platform, hosted by the Academy of Science of South Africa. We are indeed most grateful for the support we have received from several of our international partners with whom we have partnered in joint initiatives, which during the past financial year saw investment of more than R million in the strengthening of African science and technology capacities.

An excellent example in this regard is the Science Granting Councils Initiative, led by our National Research Foundation, with support from the United Kingdom and Canada to build institutional capacity for national research funding programmes in Africa. We have also partnered with Finland through the Technology Innovation Agency to support innovation systems development in Southern Africa. Our Department is the custodian of a rich and diverse portfolio of international partnerships, including long-standing partners in Europe, Japan and elsewhere, which we will continue to develop based on the principles of mutual benefit and shared responsibility, ensuring South Africa remains a preferred partner for international cooperation in science.

We will also continue to work within the multilateral arena to ensure South Africa contributes optimally to the global effort to harness science and technology for the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals. South Africa serves as a member of the United Nations Commission on Science and Technology for Development, in which deliberations I look forward to participating next week. We also continue to engage with the World Science Forum steering committee for South Africa to host this prestigious event in We hope for a positive outcome in a few months.

As I conclude, I wish to thank the former Minister of Science and Technology, the Honourable Naledi Pandor, for ensuring the Department's excellent progress in building a strong national system of innovation, and the Deputy Minister, the Honourable Zanele kaMagwaza-Msibi, for her continued support and love for the people of this country. I would also like to thank the Portfolio Committee on Science and Technology, led by Ms Lindiwe Maseko, for their continued guidance and oversight, the Director-General of Science and Technology, Dr Phil Mjwara, his deputy directors-general and DST staff, as well as the staff and leadership of our entities for ensuring that we continue with our quest to drive South Africa towards a knowledge economy.

I thank the team in the Ministry and finally my family in the gallery for their invaluable and unconditional love and support. I hereby table the budget and annual plans for the Department of Science and Technology for your consideration and support. Toggle navigation. Premium content from before is now available for everyone!

Science, technology and innovation context Honourable Members, in we inherited a fractured society, a fiscally drained state and an unsustainable, resource-intensive economic growth path. Socio-economic Innovation Partnerships, CSIR, HSRC Last year we hosted the inaugural Youth Assembly on the knowledge economy, which attracted a variety of young people — from grassroots innovators to representatives of youth formations in industry and academia. Our attempts to foster industrial and scientific research in the national interest through multidisciplinary research and technological innovation will continue to be implemented through the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research I also wish to applaud the CSIR's National Centre for Nano-Structured Materials, which marked 10 years of existence last year.

International cooperation to strengthen the national system of innovation Our international portfolio continues to grow through increased access to global knowledge, resources and capacity to advance the objectives of our national system of innovation. Na khensa. Thank you. How we can improve this page? If you'd like us to get back to you, please enter your email address. He reprimanded me right there in public for giving way to the boy just because he was white and lectured me on how I was just as good as the boy and had no business to be afraid of white people.

I just stood there feeling small; I dared not defend myself by saying that I was escaping the mad black woman and not the white boy. When I came to live here grandfather had already lost some of his marbles, after an assassination attempt by a man called Gazi who stabbed him in the head with a knife. Apparently Gazi had been unhappy about one thing or another in grandfather's administration. After the stabbing Charles was no longer the grandfather I remembered on earlier visits, years before.

The grandfather who sat in the shade of a gigantic boulder across the gravel road surrounded by his councillors, settling community disputes; who rode his horse Gobongwana, while singing its praises; who sat at his iron sewing machine making leather shoes while still singing praises to Gobongwana we were proud that he was not just a cobbler who fixed soles like the old man on the veranda of Cretchley's store; he created shoes right from scratch ; who stood in front of ixande in his brown riding breeches and gave sweets to a queue of grandchildren whenever he came from meetings in Sterkspruit; who never forgot to give a brief caress to his twenty-year-old dog Ngqawa, as it slept at the door; and who regaled us with stories of our revered ancestor Mhlontlo.

According to him, our clan, the amaMpondomise people, originally came from Qumbu in the eastern part of the Cape Province - the region that was named Transkei by subsequent colonial governments. Then one day Mhlontlo, who was a paramount chief in that area, killed the British resident magistrate. It happened in , the very year my grandfather was born. First, Mhlontlo invited the magistrate to a ceremony at Sulenkama, the seat of the amaMpondomise kingdom. The magistrate, a violent and arrogant man called Hamilton Hope, set off with much pomp, thinking that he was going to be the centre of the ceremony, only to discover too late that the ceremony was about his own ritual murder.

My ancestor, who was also a reputable medicine man, conducted the ritual in which parts of Hope's body were to be used as medicine to strengthen his armies. The whole ceremony involved a theatrical performance: Mhlontlo and his people rode back to Qumbu, thirty kilometres away, took over the magistracy and improvised a play where Mhlontlo took the role of Hamilton Hope. Turning over the pages of the big book on the magistrate's bench and adopting a nasal tone in his Anglicised isiXhosa, he mimicked Hope sentencing people.

Well, that theatre didn't last for long.

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The British forces came to arrest Mhlontlo, but he and his followers escaped to Lesotho, where they were given refuge by Chief Moorosi of the Baphuthi clan. My grandfather was a baby on his mother's back during that long journey of nearly six hundred kilometres. His parents and the hundreds of Mhlontlo's followers felt very safe because he had strong medicine that protected everyone.

Both the British and the Boers feared him; he could make their guns spew water instead of bullets and their cannons explode in their faces. After some time a white trader lured Mhlontlo with new blankets from his Lesotho refuge to the Telle River that bordered South Africa.

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He was captured by the British troops who took him back to Qumbu for trial. Grandfather never told us the details of how Mhlontlo won the case, but he did. It must have been his strong medicine at work. Many of Mhlontlo's followers decided against returning to Qumbu.


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  • That is why there are many Mdas in Lesotho today. My great-grandfather - Charles' father, that is - the Feyiya Mda who I mentioned in relation to the orchards, decided to cross the Lesotho border back to South Africa and to settle at eKra Village in the Lower Telle area.