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Communications minister Siphiwe Nyanda has fired his director-general, Mamodupi Mohlala, saying that trust between the two had “broken down irretrievably”. “In the interests of the department, the staff and the government, the minister has come to the conclusion that it would be best to release Mohlala from her position as director-general with effect from 23 July 2010,” Nyanda’s spokesman Tiyani Rikhotso said in a terse statement issued on Friday evening.
The first thing one notices when picking up the iPhone 4 for the first time is its slick design. Pictures don’t do it justice. Apple has gone for a minimalist look with its new smartphone. It’s a bit like the step up from the old, bubble-shaped iMacs to the modern, integrated, liquid crystal display-based machines they are today.
“You mustn’t be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling,” is the advice that one character gives another in Christopher Nolan’s Inception. With this film, the director of The Prestige and The Dark Knight proves once again that no other big-budget filmmaker has dreams quite as large as his. Part existential spy film, part science-fiction epic and part heist movie, Inception is by far the boldest and best film in a disappointing Hollywood summer season.
Vodacom has lost one of its top executives to Kenya’s Safaricom. The JSE-listed cellular group announced after the markets closed on Thursday evening that its chief officer for corporate affairs, Bob Collymore, was leaving to take over as CEO of Safaricom. Collymore, previously a Vodafone executive, will join Safaricom in September. Both Vodacom and Safaricom have significant shareholding from the UK’s Vodafone. Like Vodacom in SA, Safaricom is Kenya’s largest mobile operator.
President Jacob Zuma on Thursday told a press conference in Pretoria that he had heard from his communications minister, Siphiwe Nyanda, that there was a “problem” involving the department’s director-general, Mamodupi Mohlala. “The minister in passing indicated there is a problem. He has not given a proper and formal report. Once this happens, we move in,” Zuma said.
There’s finally some good news on the Seacom front. If all goes according to plan, the undersea cable system will be fully operational again from tomorrow (Friday). According to a Seacom spokesman, physical repairs to the submarine cable are in the final stages of completion. “The entire system is currently undergoing testing before the cable is lowered back into the water,” the spokesman says.
Vodacom will make a decision about what to do with its troubled business in the Democratic Republic of Congo by the end of this year, says the group’s CEO Pieter Uys. “The company is still running and there is a board meeting coming up soon,” Uys says. He doesn’t say what will be discussed at the meeting.
A triumvirate of Sentech executives has been appointed to lead the troubled state-owned broadcast signal distributor until a full-time CEO can be appointed. TechCentral has learnt from sources at Sentech that a caretaker team has been appointed, led by acting chief operating officer Dingane Dube.
Mobile operators are appealing to the department of justice to extend the deadline of the Regulation of Interception and Communication Act (Rica), says Vodacom Group CEO Pieter Uys. The act requires that all telecommunications providers and Internet providers register customer details, including their ID numbers and physical addresses. The process has to be completed by January next year, after which unregistered customers have to be cut off from the networks.
In spite of a solid performance in mobile data, SA’s largest telecommunications operator, Vodacom, has reported flat group revenue growth of 3% in the first quarter of its 2011 financial year. The company released its trading statement for the three months ended 30 June 2010 on Thursday, saying that although international markets are stabilising, weaker African currencies and a strong rand hampered growth.