Putin plots out post-election plans

Re-elected Russian President, Vladimir Putin has revealed his primary objective for his presidential term.
According to Russia Today, Putin will pay close attention to the following, saying:

1. “The main thing that we will be working on is of course the internal agenda. First of all we must ensure the growth rate for the economy and make it an innovative one. We must develop healthcare, education, industrial production, infrastructure and other branches that are crucial for moving our country forward and increasing the living standards of our citizens.
2. There are also issues connected with the national defence and security, we cannot do without them, but still the internal agenda is of primary importance today.
3. As for the defence expenditures, we have slated their decrease for this year and for the next year. This will not cause any problems for our defence capability, because the main investments into the development of the newest weapons systems have been made over the previous years.
4. We just need to bring some things to their logical conclusion, to continue the research and development that I have not spoken about yet.
5. There will be no increase in spending, no arms race. We have everything, we have secure reserves in this field.”

Putin believes that workforce productivity is a key issue that is the joint-responsibility of the nation.

Source: Russia Today

Russian Presidential Elections: Putin continues to lead

Russian leader, Vladimir Putin has once again secured a victory to lead the country for a second consecutive term, with all votes counted.

He started serving as President of the country in 2008, with another six years (to end in 2024) now being added to his term.

Putin currently leads with 76,6% of the votes, putting him well above the simple majority needed to avoid a run-off.

First-time Communist Party candidate, Pavel Grudinin is running second with 11.9%, followed by nationalist politician, Vladimir Zhirinovsky who is also in the top three with 5.66%.

Putin picked up a higher following this year, compared to his 64% win in 2012. The Central Elections Commission (CEC) has 10 days to finalise the votes.

Source : Russia Today

President Xi Jinping remains ‘historic’ speeches are validated at Davos

Fu Jing in Davos, Switzerland
Displayed with permission from China Daily

Theme built on ‘shared future’ idea president unveiled in 2017

President Xi Jinping’s advocacy of a community with a shared future for mankind, an open economy, globalisation and fighting protectionism and isolationism has been widely welcomed and China has been transforming the proposals into action, said a senior Chinese official attending the World Economic Forum on Wednesday.

Liu He, a member of Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, addressed the four-day annual meeting, which ends on Friday. Last year, Xi made speeches that were considered historic in Davos and Geneva.

“President Xi came here last year and delivered a speech entitled Jointly Shoulder Responsibility of Our Times, Promote Global Growth, in which he expounded on China’s firm support for economic globalisation,” said Liu, a top economic policy adviser as head of the General Office of the Central Leading Group for Financial and Economic Affairs, responsible for mapping the country’s economic policies. “That speech was warmly received by the international community.”

Liu said that in line with Xi’s propositions in Davos, China has stood firm against all forms of protectionism in the past year.

He said China has strengthened protection of intellectual property rights, promoted fair competition, deepened the opening of financial markets and increased imports.

“With efforts to implement the Belt and Road Initiative, we are moving economic globalisation forward with concrete actions,” Liu said.

Liu said the theme of this year’s forum, Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World, is highly relevant.

He quoted Xi as saying, “As long as we keep to the goal of building a community with a shared future for mankind and work hand in hand to fulfil our responsibilities and overcome difficulties, we will be able to create a better world and deliver better lives for our people.”

While urging improved labour productivity and changes in the savings rate in large economies, Liu warned that deep-seated problems in the world economy have yet to be fixed and multiple risks and considerable uncertainties come from high debts, asset bubbles, protectionism and the escalation of regional and international hot spots.

“To meet these challenges, to keep the growth momentum, and to turn the cyclical recovery into sustainable growth, we need concerted global efforts,” Liu said. “History often repeats itself in different ways or keeps revisiting similar crossroads. It is crucial to make prudent and rational choices – choices that will serve mankind well.”

He advocated having an open mind and taking a strategic perspective in dealing with global challenges like climate change, disruptive technologies and terrorism.

“No country can cope with them alone. We need to enhance mutual understanding, tolerance and trust. And we must seek cooperation in a sensible and practical manner,” Liu said.

“We need to shape a new type of international relations featuring mutual respect, fairness, justice and win-win cooperation, and build a community with a shared future for mankind. We believe this is the only way that will lead us to prosperity.”

Angus Deaton, an economics professor at Princeton University, told China Daily that Xi’s concept of a shared future for mankind is a great vision. “I think China is doing what they can to make it happen,” said Deaton, recipient of the 2015 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences.

Rob Wainwright, director of Europol, the police authority based in The Hague, said Xi’s call for a shared future is significant.

“I work very much in Europe with US partners, but that is not enough. I am very pleased about the positive positions that China has taken so far,” Wainwright said.

In his speech, Liu also said that high-quality growth, instead of high-speed development, will predominate in China’s development in the coming years.

Liu said China is preparing a new reform package that will be announced when China celebrates the 40th anniversary of reform and opening-up this year.

Liu has said that the financial sector, manufacturing and services industries, intellectual property rights and imports are the four key sectors for China’s reforms this year.


Source: Repubhub/China Daily

Cultural Centre Promotes African Week in Sao Paulo

Angola Press Agency Luanda Luanda
Displayed with permission from

The African Cultural Centre jointly with the consulates in Angola, South Africa, Cabo Verde, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Mozambique and Egypt, will hold on May 21-28 the African week in Sao Paulo city (Brazil), under the celelbration of the Africa Day.

This will be the first event of this kind to take place in Sao Paulo city, whose aim is to show to the Brazilian people the variious domains of the Africa capacities and potentialities, presenting a contemporary continent, thus divulging, valuing and promoting its African culture.

The event is also intended to eliminate stereotypes associated to African countries, disclose the African contributions on sectors such as economy, culture, gastronomy and contribute to boost business between Brazil and this continent.

Angola will be represented by Victoria Models and fashion designer, Loyd Ana Vasconcelos on behalf of AnaLoyd brand, participations are open to business people, artists, musicians, writers, painters, chefs, among others, promoting their art and the Angolan culture and values.


China ranks No 2 in internet talents among BRICS countries

Wang Keju in Wuzhen
Displayed with permission from China Daily

China ranks second in the number of internet talents after India among the BRICS countries, according to a report released at the 4th World Internet Conference on Monday.

The 2017 Internet Talent Development Report, complied by the National Academy of Innovation Strategy in Beijing, shows that the number of internet talents in China accounts for 27% among the five countries, while India takes up 52.2%, almost as twice large as China.

The number of internet talents is distributed unevenly worldwide, said Ni Guangnan, a researcher at the Institute of Computing Technology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

“Chinese IT talents are highly competitive in innovation ability, diligence and other aspects, but enterprises at present are facing the pressure of a lack of talents,” he said.

In China, the major eight enterprises such as Huawei, Tencent, China Mobile have a total demand of about 169,000 internet talents this year. However, the major eight universities including Peking University and Shanghai Jiao Tong University can only provide about 14,900.

The report also shows that emerging internet startups are in a fierce contest with established internet companies for these talents.

Startups offer higher salaries to attract talents than the three major internet companies – Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent (BAT). The average salary in some new companies, including DiDi and Meituan, is higher than BAT by 21%, according to the report.

Startups offer higher salaries to attract talents than the three major internet companies – Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent (BAT). The technical employers with one to three years’ work experience in some new companies, including DiDi and Meituan, earn higher salaries than employees of BAT by 21%, according to the report.

“In a world where the boundaries between the internet and traditional industry are blurring, companies need the best talent to keep on top of the game,” said Yu Chengdong, CEO of Huawei’s consumer business group.

– China Daily

Robert Mugabe’s Resignation Letter

President Robert Mugabe yesterday announced that he was stepping down as the president of Zimbabwe. His official resignation letter was read out by Zimbabwe parliamentary Speaker Jacob Mudenda in Harare where a discussion of an impeachment motion was set to be held.

State House



21 November 2017

The Honourable Jacob Mudenda

Notice of resignation as President of the Republic of Zimbabwe

In terms of the provisions of section 96 (1) of the constitution of Zimbabwe, amendment number 20, 2013. Following my verbal communication with the Speaker of the National Assembly, Advocate Jacob Mudenda at 13:53 hours, 21st November, 2017 intimating my intention to resign as President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, I Robert Gabriel Mugabe in terms of section 96 (1) of the constitution of Zimbabwe hereby formally tender my resignation as the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe with immediate effect.

My decision to resign is voluntary on my part and arises from my concern for the welfare of the people of Zimbabwe and my desire to ensure a smooth, peaceful and non-violent transfer of power that underpins national security, peace and stability.

Kindly give public notice of my resignation as soon as possible as required by section 96 (1) of the constitution of Zimbabwe.

Yours faithfully,

Robert Gabriel Mugabe President of the Republic of Zimbabwe.

Image: CNN

Xi’s wisdom offers new insights into global governance

Displayed with permission from China Daily

BEIJING — Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era offers new insights into the improvement of the global governance system, international politicians and analysts said in reading signals from the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC).

China, under the leadership of the CPC, endorses the common values of the whole mankind, including peace, equity, justice, democracy and freedom, and advocates a world truly shared by all where international affairs are jointly managed, the world order is jointly built, and economic and social progress are shared.


China champions the development of “a community with a shared future for mankind”, which has been widely accepted by the international community and become an important consensus of global governance.

Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico spoke highly of Xi’s innovative concept of promoting the establishment of a community with a shared future for mankind.

Lord Tu’ivakano, speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga and former prime minister, said China’s impressive feat is an inspiration to developing countries including Tonga.

China has over the past five years set its own independent course governed by a policy of development-for-all, said Michael Steger, president of the Bay Area Chapter of the International Schiller Institute. He attributed China’s achievements to the strong Chinese leadership. His organization is a global political and economic think tank with headquarters in Germany and the United States.

Steger noted that China’s willingness to blaze its own pathway, with an orientation to share the means of development, has now become a stabilizing factor for the world.

With great strength comes great responsibility, and Xi has already displayed that responsibility, said Sourabh Gupta, a senior policy analyst at the Institute for China-America Studies, a Washington-based independent think tank.


As China gradually steps up onto the stage to take part in global governance, international observers have recognized it as a responsible stakeholder.

Speaking on China’s international leadership, Maksym Savrasov, head of the secretariat of Ukraine’s ruling party Petro Poroshenko Bloc “Solidarity”, said the achievements are vividly represented by the initiative on the construction of the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road (the Belt and Road Initiative), which was put forward by Xi in 2013.

The initiative envisions reviving the ancient overland and maritime silk trade routes that connect Asia with Europe and Africa, boosting inter-connectivity, trade and people-to-people links.

“We are convinced that this global initiative has an enormous potential. Today more than 65 countries are united around this idea,” or more than 60 percent of the world’s population, the Ukrainian lawmaker said.

Pakistani President Mamnoon Hussain, senior leader of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, said: “The Belt and Road Initiative has been proved to be effective in addressing problems facing mankind. The government and people of Pakistan are willing to work together with the Chinese people to build a global community with a shared future.”

The Belt and Road Initiative “should be able to produce global public goods. I think it can be,” said Harvard professor Joseph Nye.

Former Ukrainian President Leonid Kravchuk said the initiative is a good instrument to promote win-win cooperation and equal partnership around the globe.

“China firmly adheres to the policy of non-interference. It does not impose its lifestyle upon others, but promotes cooperation. The Belt and Road Initiative is the vivid confirmation to this,” Kravchuk said.

As dozens of countries have joined the initiative, China has become “a major center of attraction” for all the people who wish to achieve development, said Mahmoud Raya, director of the “China in Arab Eyes” news website in Lebanon.


Over the years, China’s proposals, ranging from the Belt and Road Initiative and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, created to complement multilateral financial institutions like the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, to the strengthening of multilateral institutions such as BRICS and Shanghai Cooperation Organization, have provided alternative solutions to major issues in global development, said Xulio Rios, director of the Spanish Observatory of Chinese Politics.

When the world faces uncertainties arising from persistent economic problems and serious disputes, China takes on greater global responsibilities, and China’s growing role in global affairs means a larger presence of emerging economies and developing countries in global governance, Rios said.

Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz said Xi’s strategic thinking maps out a bright future for the Chinese people and consolidates the foundation of world peace.

China’s success can provide other countries with inspiring experience in pursuing their own development and in promoting global peace and prosperity.

“Over the past five years, China has shown potential it has to the entire world,” said South Korean ambassador to China Noh Young-min, noting that Beijing has also begun to turn into a key player in the international community for world peace.

“Most of the countries admire the Chinese experience,” Raya from Lebanon added. “That’s why China will always be an inspiration for all the countries looking for peace, security and advancement.”

China’s plans to standardise elderly care services

Displayed with permission from China Daily

The draft requires nursing homes to provide telecommunications services, including but are not limited to telephone and the Internet. If residents have problems with telecommunications services, institutions should provide professional staff to help them.

Staff should treat the elderly with politeness and patience, keeping the private information of residents and visitors confidential. The environment and facilities must be safe and protect resident privacy, the draft said.

Outsourcing services should be commissioned to qualified organisations, and withdrawal systems established.

Nursing homes should make public service programs and charging standards, and set out rules for addressing complaints. Complaints should be responded within 10 working days.

The draft also requires nursing homes to offer hospice services. Hospice services providers should receive training before offering services.

China had more than 230.8 million people aged 60 or above at the end of 2016, 16.7 percent of the total population, according to a report released by the Ministry of Civil Affairs.

By international standards, a country or region is considered an “ageing society” when the number of people aged 60 or above reaches 10 percent or more.

– China Daily 


[PHOTO ESSAY] Remembering Chris Hani

Today marks 24 years (10 April 1993) since the assassination of struggle stalwart Chris Hani. Born Martin Thembisile Hani, he was the leader of the South African Communist Party and chief of staff of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the African National Congress (ANC).

Early last week, Chris Hani’s daughter, Lindiwe Hani released a book titles Being Chris Hani’s Daughter, in which she shares intimate recollections of the 12 years she spent with her father, also opening up about how his untimely death shook the Hani family.

We remember Chris Hani in pictures through some of the highlights in his life.

Secretary General of South African Communist Party (SACP) Chris Hani (L)
and former secretary general Joe Slovo (R) walk together in Soweto on
December 07, 1991. Photo: AFP Photo / Walter Dhladhla

Chris Hani inspect Mk soldiers at an MK rally held at Langa Stadium,Cape
Town,1991. Picture by

Chris Hani with President Jacob Zuma. Picture by @MsibiT01 on twitter.

April 1991. Thokoza, South Africa. Charismatic ANC military leader, Chris Hani, appeals to township supporters for an end to violence and to the factional killing, in the run up to first all-race elections.


A day forever engraved into the history of South Africa, Chris Hani’s funeral.

April 18, 1993. Soweto, South Africa. Guerillas of the ANC’s military wing, the M.K., carry the coffin of assassinated ANC military chief, Chris Hani, at his funeral


Award-winning teacher showcases Chinese educational innovation

Displayed with permission from China Daily

After being named one of the top 10 best teachers in the world by the Global Teacher Prize, Yang Boya, a mental health educator from Yunnan province, has successfully attracted global attention to China’s education innovation. Yang is using her platform to showcase the country’s rising influence on international education trends.

Yang has set up a centre where students – especially left-behind children – can seek professional guidance from psychologists. She is also the first Chinese teacher to earn a spot on the top 10 list of candidates for the Global Teacher Prize. Coordinated by UK-based non-profit Varkey Foundation, the award aims to recognise the most qualified educators in the world. It received 20,000 applications from 179 countries in 2017.

“Being nominated as a top candidate for the prize, I have earned a chance to communicate with my international counterparts, as well as advocate for my Chinese colleagues. I think the international education arena needs more voices from China,” Yang told the People’s Daily Online during an interview.

Innovation to change the conventional education landscape

As China traditionally prioritises knowledge and learning, Chinese families invest a lot in their children’s education. According to BBC statistics, per capita annual disposable income in China rose by 63.3 percent in the five years prior to 2012, yet consumer expenditure on education rose by almost 94 percent in that same period.

“In China, we have an old saying: The study of books outpaces all other pursuits. My parents have spent a lot on my education, hiring tutors and sending me to study groups. Sometimes I feel like I am going to be suffocated by the pressure, but I cannot tell them how I feel as it may disappoint them,” said Chen Lin, a Beijing-based high school student.

“Chinese parents usually have high expectations for their children’s academic performance, while the kids’ psychological health is frequently neglected. Many Chinese teenagers suffer from pressure and confusion, especially left-behind children,” said Yang.

According to a report released in 2015 by Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, over 21 percent of Chinese children aged 10 to 15 feel depressed more than twice a week, while 20 percent have expressed discontent with their lives and 22 percent have expressed a lack of confidence in their futures. Children living in rural areas are plagued by even more mental problems than their peers living in cities.

A paucity of professional help and mental healthcare has led to severe social issues, including suicide and school violence among teenagers. In 2015, four left-behind children in Bijie, Guizhou province committed suicide partly due to the absence of their parents.

The oldest was 13, while the youngest was just 5. What’s more, according to a 2015 Xinhua survey, over 70 percent of respondents said they had witnessed incidents of school violence. In order to tackle these problems, Yang has been conducting research on children’s mental health education, especially the emotional deprivation suffered by left-behind children in rural areas.

“I have made several breakthroughs in promoting mental health education. For instance, I introduced drama, theater and music into my teaching methods, which has helped children to improve their mental health and confidence,” said Yang. Notably, Yang also includes parents in her education philosophy, stressing that parental figures are crucial to improving children’s mental health.

“Chinese parents are willing to put great effort into improving their children’s grades, but many hardly spend any time with their kids. Even if they wanted to communicate with teenagers, their lack of professional knowledge and communication skills makes it hard to construct a successful conversation,” Yang explained.

Thanks to Yang’s innovation, more and more educators and parents in China have realized the importance of children’s inner worlds. Meanwhile, society has begun attaching more importance to teenagers’ mental health and mental health education.

“Recognising that a well-rounded education includes psychological support, Yang has demonstrated through her family counseling project that she thinks beyond the walls of the traditional classroom,” said Keren Wong, co-founder of Bridging Education and Mobility, a Beijing-based educational organization. Wong added that Yang’s achievements have shown the world that China is innovative when it comes to education.

“China’s voice”

“Being a candidate for the award has allowed me to communicate with educators from all over the world, but I still feel pity, as I see hardly any Chinese teachers joining this international event,” said Yang.

According to Yang, the world has shown great interest in China’s education landscape. Chinese students’ excellent academic performance and the respect teachers are shown in Chinese society have intrigued educators around the world. Nevertheless, there has been minimal communication between these educators and their Chinese counterparts.

“Though equipped with rich knowledge and teaching skills, Chinese teachers are not as confident as their foreign counterparts, and are not good at self-promotion,” Yang opined.

Echoing Yang, Wong suggested that more Chinese voices should be heard in the arena of international education.

“By joining more international events like the Global Teacher Prize, [Chinese educators] can demonstrate how the Chinese education system overcomes unique challenges through innovation – for instance, expanding quality education for the country’s very large rural population, as well as gaining a better understanding of how to prepare students to face the world,” said Wong.