Skills development has been identified as a key requirement for economic growth in South Africa, and for the economic empowerment of the previously disadvantaged majority.As a result, the Skills Development Act (1998) provides a framework for the development of skills in the workplace. Amongst other things, the Act makes provision for skills development by means of a levy-grant scheme, and the establishment of 27 sector-specific Sector Education and Training Authorities – or Setas – to administer the scheme’s funds, and manage the skills development process. What is a Seta?The Setas were established in March 2000 and are responsible for the disbursement of training levies payable by all employers in the country. Setas replace and extend the work of the old industry training boards and are accredited by the South African Qualifications Authority.Each separate economic sector has one Seta. There are 27 Setas which cover all work sectors in South Africa, including government sectors. The members of Setas include trade unions, government and bargaining councils from appropriate industries.Within its own sector, a Seta must develop and implement a skills development plan, be responsible for quality control and pay out development grants. They are responsible for about R2.5-billion each year.Part of the objective of the Setas is to ensure that the skills requirements of the various sectors are identified, and that the adequate and appropriate skills are readily available. They are required to ensure that training is of the appropriate quality, meets agreed standards as laid out by the national framework, and caters for the training needs of new entrants to the labour market as well as the currently employed work force.The Setas are also responsible for a learnership programme and the implementation of strategic sector skills plans. They have discretionary funds, drawn from their levy income, that can be used for projects designed to assist in the achievement of sector priorities, including the design and implementation of learnerships.The 27 Setas each renew an MoU with the Department of Labour on an annual basis.What do I have to pay?A compulsory skills-development levy was introduced on 1 April 2000, payable by employers who are registered with the South African Revenue Service (SARS) for employees’ tax purposes, or by employers with an annual payroll in excess of R250 000. The levy rate is 1% of the total payroll, and the collection of the funds is administered by SARS.How are the funds disbursed? The levies paid to SARS are put in a special fund. 80% of the money from this fund is distributed to the different Setas and the other 20% is paid into the National Skills Fund. The Setas then pay grants to employers who appoint a Skills Development Facilitator. The National Skills Fund funds skills development projects that don’t fall under the Setas. How do I get my Seta to work for me? Appointing a facilitatorIn order to be eligible for grants, an employer must appoint a Skills Development Facilitator who can be a full-time or part-time employee or contracted consultant.The facilitator is responsible for the development and planning of a company’s skills development strategy. This will include the development and implementation of an annual workplace skills plan and the submission of an annual training report. He or she also serves as a resource to the employer with regard to the criteria required for accreditation of courses, skills programmes and learnership development.Once a facilitator has been appointed, employers can develop the skills of their staff, and reclaim the funds for doing this in three ways:Workplace skills planIn the first year of the levy-grant scheme employers can recover in grants a minimum of 50% of the levy they have paid. The grants, referred to as grants A, B, C and D, have certain conditions that must be adhered to.For the appointment and registration of a Skills Development Facilitator – Grant A – employers will be able to recover 15% of the levy they have paid. The appointment of a facilitator is necessary before applications for Grants B, C and D will be considered.Grant B: An employer will be able to recover 10% of the total levy payment for preparing, submitting and obtaining approval from the appropriate Seta for a workplace skills plan.Grant C: An employer will be able to recover a further 20% of the total levy payment by preparing and submitting an annual training report based on the approved workplace skills plan.Grand D: Each Seta makes available grants to the equivalent of 5% of the total levy payment by the employer for specific sector skills initiatives. The criteria will be made available by the employer’s relevant Seta.Learnerships 140 learnership programmes have been developed by the Setas, ranging from basic entry level to post professional levels. If employers agree to embark on learnership programmes they will be able to access a cash grant from their Seta as well as a tax incentive. Every time an employer signs up a learnership agreement they can claim R25 000 offset against taxable income. When the recognised phase of the learnership has been completed they can claim an additional R25 000 against taxable income.Strategic grantsSetas are eligible to provide additional grants to companies for developmental or special skills training, for example, in the area of HIV/AIDS and adult basic education and training. Tell me more about the National Skills Fund…The National Skills Fund is administered by the department of labour. It is made up of 20% of the total skills levy paid by employers and is used to address significant national skills priorities.Funds are allocated through a range of funding windows. The National Skills Authority provides advice on each window and the criteria to be used to determine the allocation of funds.The principal funding windows deal with strategic projects, social development initiatives, innovation and research, and a bursary programme to support students to study in areas of scarce skills.Nineteen strategic projects to the value of R1.3-billion were approved over a three-and-a-half-year period by the minister of labour in 2002.Where can I find my Seta? The government has contact details for all 27 Setas online.For more see:SA Labour BulletinDept. of LabourParalegal advice websiteBackground documents, regulations and other resourcesSouthAfrica.info reporter Want to use this story on your website? See Using SouthAfrica.info material.
With Jharkhand reporting one of the highest incidents of mob-lynching, the Congress manifesto for the upcoming Assembly election in the State is likely to propose an anti-lynching law on the lines of the recent law cleared by the Congress government in Rajasthan. The Rajasthan Assembly in August this year cleared “The Rajasthan Protection from Lynching Bill, 2019” which provides for life imprisonment and a fine up to ₹5 lakh to convicts in cases of mob lynching. The Bill proposes imprisonment of up to seven years and a fine of up to ₹1 lakh in case of the victim suffering simple injuries.The convicts will get jail terms up to 10 years and a fine of ₹25,000 to ₹3 lakh in case of an assault by mob or victim suffering serious injuries. It also defines lynching as “an act or series of acts of violence or those of aiding, abetting or attempting an act of violence, whether spontaneous or preplanned, by a mob on the grounds of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth, language, dietary practices, sexual orientation, political affiliation or ethnicity.” Sources said the party’s manifestos for the Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan Assembly polls will also be drawn on. In the farm sector, the manifesto will list ways to check the agrarian crisis and is likely to offer loan waiver like it has done in the other three States.With no clarity on which way the alliance in the State is headed or the division of seats, the manifesto, according to sources, will maintain a balance between tribal and non-tribal expectations. The AICC research department is working on the manifesto. “We are in the final stages of talks with our allies and will announce it whenever it strategically suits us,” RPN Singh, the party’s Jharkhand in-charge said. Sources said the Congress will play the junior partner to the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM).“Our focus will be on rising unemployment. Again we will be borrowing a few ideas from the Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh manifestos,” a senior Congress leader said. In Madhya Pradesh the Congress had also promised unemployment allowance. The manifesto will include better implementation of the land rights laws and will also talk about upholding the CNT/SPT (Chhotanagpur and Santhal Pargana tenancy) Acts. The BJP government was forced to roll back the proposed amendments to the CNT/SPT Act following pressure from tribal groups.In the 2014 Assembly elections, the BJP won 37 seats and formed the government along with the AJSU Party which won 5. With 19 seats, the JMM was the largest Opposition party; JVM(P) won 8 and Congress 6.
Pogba calls Man Utd crisis meetingby Paul Vegas25 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United star Paul Pogba reportedly called a team meeting during training last week.He urged his team-mates to “stick together” amid their miserable start to the season.United have made an indifferent start to the campaign with only two wins from their opening six Premier League fixtures ahead of the visit of Arsenal to Old Trafford on Monday.In fact, the Red Devils have won only five of the 17 matches played since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was given the managerial job on a full-time basis in March.An Old Trafford source told The Sun: “Paul got all the players together and has been speaking to them about sticking together.“He has been in good spirits of late and is still pulling for Ole. He initiated a sort of rallying call to the boys. He knows he has a lot of responsibility and trying to inspire the younger guys around him.“The backroom staff are impressed and been appreciated while he has been out injured.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
New Delhi: When all efforts of the Delhi Police failed to zero in on the suspect in the shooting on a woman case of Dwarka on July 11, cops resorted to CCTV for help.However, police again reached a blind road when even viewing a thousand hours of CCTV footage on the road proved futile with no trace of the criminals beyond a certain point. However, minute observation of the details on the CCTV led Delhi Police investigators to a clue. “We realised that the criminals, in order to dodge police, have changed clothes at a certain point. They also changed bikes so as to bluff the investigators in case they have left a chain of witness behind. However, our team of Dwarka district soon unearthed the plot and trailed the CCTV to village Chhota Bans, Bhati Khurd Fatehpur Beri in South Delhi,” said Madhup Tiwari, Joint CP Western range. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder”The criminals were seen in the CCTV footage talking to someone on phone, tough that was to bluff the police. Actually they just pretended to talk. This also delayed our investigation,” said Anto Alphonse, DCP Dwarka. The accused were later identified by local intelligence to be Pinku and Giriraj Tomar. They were found missing from their houses but were soon arrested along with the main conspirator Chandraprakash who hired them to kill Kiran Bala. Two other arrested were also made.
WASHINGTON — Top executives from Google, Microsoft, IBM, Oracle and Qualcomm are planning to meet at the White House amid strained ties between President Donald Trump’s administration and the tech industry.The White House says the Thursday meeting will address efforts to advance American leadership in innovation and how that will affect jobs and the economy.Google CEO Sundar Pichai, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, IBM CEO Gini Rometty, Oracle co-CEO Safra Catz and Qualcomm CEO Steven Mollenkopf are among the expected attendees.It’s not clear if Trump is also attending. Some of Trump’s policies on trade and immigration have antagonized the tech industry.The president’s daughter and adviser, Ivanka Trump, is attending a separate business gathering in Washington on Thursday that includes the CEOs of IBM, JPMorgan Chase, Walmart, Boeing and AT&T.The Associated Press
New Delhi: The suspense over the announcement of dates for Lok Sabha elections came to an end on Sunday as Chief Election Commissioner unveiled the poll dates. As per Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sunil Arora, the election would be held in seven phases starting from April 11 and ending on May 19 followed by counting of votes on May 23 for all the 543 Lok Sabha seats.Following the repeated demands of opposition parties, the Election Commission will use Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPATs) in all polling stations along with EVMs. As many as 17.4 lakh VVPAT machines will be deployed for the Lok Sabha and simultaneous assembly elections, Arora said, adding that in new SOPs issued, vehicles installed with GPS trackers and mobile-based tracking system for transportation of reserve EVMs and VVPATs will be used. Also Read – Squadrons which participated in Balakot air strike awarded citations on IAF Day”There will be very stringent security norms for storage, handling of VVPATs. After incidents, fresh SOPS have been issued for last mile transportation, including monitoring by GPS, including reserve too,” the CEC said. In a first, the Election Commission has decided to introduce candidates’ photos on the voting machines, in addition to the party name and symbol. “This would eliminate confusion in the minds of voters,” Arora said. However, the Election Commission that ‘failed’ to conduct bypoll for Anantnag parliamentary seat is still not in ‘position’ to hold assembly election in Jammu & Kashmir along with the Lok Sabha poll schedule. There are six parliamentary seats in J&K and elections for all six Lok Sabha seats will be held in 5-phases. Also Read – SC declines Oil Min request to stay sharing of documents on Reliance penaltyAccording to the CEC, assembly polls in Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal, Odisha and Sikkim will also be held simultaneously. While announcing the election dates, Arora said, “The model code of conduct would come into immediate effect from Sunday. This time, 10 lakh polling stations would be set as against about nine lakh in 2014 and nearly 90 crore voters would be eligible to vote for 543 Lok Sabha constituencies across the country.” “The first phase will be held on April 11, second on April 18, third on April 23, fourth on April 29, fifth on May 6, sixth on May 12 and seventh phase on May 19. The counting of votes will be on May 23,” Arora said, adding that in the first phase, 91 constituencies will go for polls, 97 constituencies in the second phase, 115 constituencies in third phase, 71 in fourth phase, 51 in fifth phase, 59 in sixth and 59 in the seventh phase. Polling for Lok Sabha seats in the states of Bihar (40), Uttar Pradesh (80) and West Bengal (42) will conclude in seven phases, while there will be single phase polling in 22 states/UTs and the states of Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Odisha will witness four-phase elections. In reply to a question on monitoring contents/political advertisements on social media such as Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, the CEC said, “We would set up control rooms to monitor the contents. There is a case pending in Bombay High Court over the issue. The observation of the HC in the case would bring more clarity. We have also asked candidates to submit their social media details.” Replying to a question on the provision of making arrangements to deposit mobile phones at the polling stations, the CEC said, “There is work in progress and a decision in this regard would be taken very soon.” The assembly elections in Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Andhra Pradesh will be held on April 11, while assembly poll in Odisha will be held in four phases starting from April 11.
Iran said Tuesday that its proposal to unblock talks with world powers on its controversial nuclear programme had earned a good response, but declined to reveal what was on the table.“We presented our proposals in a very positive environment and the reaction was good,” senior Iranian negotiator Abbas Aragchi said after an hour-long PowerPoint presentation by Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and his team.“The climate of the meeting was very good and very constructive. The proposal that we have introduced has the capacity to make a breakthrough in the negotiations,” Aragchi told reporters. “We are very serious. We are not here symbolically, to waste our time. We are serious for target-oriented negotiations,” he added.Aragchi said that all sides had agreed not to reveal any details of the proposal for the moment.Iran’s meeting with the European Union-chaired P5+1 group — the United States, Britain, France, China and Russia, plus Germany — ends a six-month hiatus over the Islamic republic’s refusal to curb uranium enrichment in exchange for the easing of punishing international sanctions.It is also seen as a test for the administration of new President Hassan Rouhani, who took office in August pledging transparency on the nuclear programme and engagement to eventually lift the international trade embargo that is strangling Iran’s economy.In another sign of the new mood in the often-tense nuclear talks, Iran’s team for the first time delivered its presentation in English, officials said.
TRIPOLI – Amnesty International alleged Monday a Libyan soldier was tortured to death by members of his own unit, calling on authorities to investigate the case and break with such Kadhafi-era practices.“Hussein Radwan Raheel, 37, who served with the Saiqa Forces, an elite army unit under the ministry of defence, was severely beaten and subjected to electric shocks,” Amnesty said quoting family members.It said the soldier “was tortured to death last week following 10 hours of interrogation by his own army unit” following the disappearance of a military vehicle from the unit’s Tripoli compound. “A forensic report and photos of his body seen by the organisation also indicate he was tortured,” added the watchdog.It called for an independent probe, saying it “fears that a military investigation will lack transparency and independence and will only lead to whitewashing abuse”.Amnesty’s Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui said torture was widespread under the toppled regime of dictator Moamer Kadhafi, who was killed in the 2011 uprising.She charged that ill-treatment and rights violations still flourished under the rule of Libya’s new authorities who also have “turned a blind eye to abuses by militias”.“Torture and ill-treatment were routinely used by the state to terrorise the Libyan people under Kadhafi’s brutal rule. The Libyan authorities must show that the country has made a clean break with the past by sending a strong message that human rights violations by state officials will not be tolerated,” said Hadj Sahraoui.Libya’s top political authority, the National General Congress, in April passed a law criminalising torture, forced disappearances and discrimination.Amnesty said there had been 20 deaths in custody in Libya between September 2011 and July 2012.It said its delegates toured 27 prisons and detention centres this year, including those run by former rebels, and found torture was widespread in some and systematic in others.Libya has been marred by lawlessness since the 2011 uprising, which much of the unrest blamed on the former rebels who have resisted appeals by authorities to integrate into the regular armed forces.
Chris Webber has run out of timeouts with the State of California and now they’ve filed a six-figure tax lien against the five-time NBA all-star … TMZ has learned.According to documents filed by the California Employment Development Office, CWebb owes the state for unpaid taxes from the last few months of 2008 and all of 2009. The initial amount was for $81,427.36, but with $25,874.56 in penalties and $11,629.05 in interest … the former Sacrament King now owes $118,930.97.
An OSU helmet sits on the field before the 45th annual BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 1 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. OSU won 44-28. Photo Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo Editor GLENDALE, Ariz. – Before No. 7 Ohio State took the field to close out its 2015 season with a 44-28 victory over No. 8 Notre Dame in the Fiesta Bowl, The Lantern’s sports editors Ryan Cooper and Kevin Stankiewicz laid out five things they would be looking out for. Here are how those five elements transpired.Fast startsNotre Dame got the ball first to start the game and were given the gift of OSU redshirt senior Jack Willoughby sending the kickoff out of bounds. It was exactly what Brian Kelly wanted for his team, but the Fighting Irish could not convert that into a quick start, as they would have hoped. Instead, Notre Dame went three-and-out. For OSU, it was night-and-day different. The Buckeyes took over possession at their own 20-yard line and surgically marched down the field. Redshirt senior H-back Braxton Miller had 36 all-purpose yards and Ezekiel Elliott punched it in from 2 yards out to cap off a nine-play, 80-yard touchdown drive in just 3:01. “Obviously their first series was outstanding,” Kelly said. “They ran the ball effectively right down the field. So I just think that they executed very well early on.” From the get-go, it was clear the Buckeyes suffered from no cobwebs. The Fighting Irish, again, went three-and-out, including a false start penalty, forcing another punt. Just three plays later, the Scarlet and Gray found the end zone for the second time, this time courtesy of a 15-yard catch-and-run by redshirt junior wide receiver Michael Thomas. Notre Dame was able to claw back into game throughout the rest of play, getting it down to just a one-score deficit, at 28-21, but its ice-cold start, compared to OSU’s flaming hot one, clearly hindered the Fighting Irish. “It was the difference in the game really, those 14 points early,” Kelly said. “We had to play catch-up from there.” Trick playsIn postseason play, teams will often look to trick plays of sorts to try and catch their opponent off guard. That was the case in the Fiesta Bowl, however, it was only just once. Down 14-0, with 9:22 left in the second quarter, redshirt freshman quarterback DeShone Kizer threw a backward pass to redshirt sophomore wide receiver Torii Hunter Jr., who, instead of advancing forward, took a step back and looked to throw. Hunter had an open man in the end zone, tight end Alizé Jones, but the throw had slightly too much on it, as it fell incomplete just beyond Jones’ reach. Although the play was unsuccessful, it showed that Kelly was trying to find any way to kickstart his team after the sluggish start. OSU, for the most part, avoided any sort of trickery, but some unusual route combinations did appear at times throughout the game, notably on Thomas’ 13-yard catch on the first drive of the second half. End of the roadThe victory over Notre Dame gave the 18 members of OSU’s senior class 50 career wins, the most in program history. Although it couldn’t secure a second consecutive berth in the College Football Playoff, the Fiesta Bowl win was still a good final chapter for the group.“I am glad we got that win for them,” sophomore defensive end Jalyn Holmes said following the game. Many of the seniors that saw the field on Friday were instrumental in the outcome. Linebacker Joshua Perry’s seven tackles were tied for the team-high. On the offensive line, left tackle Taylor Decker was key, like usual, in excavating large holes for Elliott to run through and protecting Barrett. Right tackle Chase Farris, who at times has struggled during the year, turned in a solid performance, as well. As for Miller, one of the most decorated players in OSU history, his final showing in scarlet and gray was certainly not a bad one. The win marked the first postseason victory he was active for and, after disappearing at times during the season, Miller made his presence felt Friday. He finished with 26 rushing yards on two attempts, as well as two catches for 12 yards. Miller didn’t display any wicked spin moves like he did against Virginia Tech, but, all things considered, his OSU finale was a good one. Holmes said the senior class will be missed and that there is “so many” who have left their marks on the program, not only because of their performances on the field, but for the lessons they have taught off it.“All the seniors try to just help someone out in any way,” he said. “Chase Farris, (defensive tackle) Joel Hale, Joshua Perry, they all try and help on and off the field. That’s what made them so special.” Barrett’s big-stage debutAfter missing out on postseason play last year, Friday’s Fiesta Bowl was Barrett’s bowl debut. The redshirt sophomore has not been known to melt under the bright lights, but wondering how he might respond to such a large stage was a valid question. He answered them soundly, ultimately winning the game’s most valuable player award.Barrett started the game with an eight-yard completion to Thomas, and from there, he continued to facilitate the offense exceptionally. He completed his first seven pass attempts for 82 yards and one score. The Wichita Falls, Texas, native also ran for 16 yards during the 7-of-7 stretch. Overall, Barrett finished the game 19-of-31 for 211 yards and one touchdown through the air, while also picking up 96 yards on the ground. He did have one interception in the third quarter after his pass was tipped at the line of scrimmage, but, for the most part, Barrett’s performance was very efficient. He showed no signs of the big stage making him crumble. After the game, Barrett praised the Notre Dame defense, but he said the key to the offense’s success was just taking whatever was given to them.“They tried to make sure they took away our (deep) shots,” Barrett said. “We was able to try to hit things underneath. (We) did a good job of that.” Finding help up the middleWith two starters on the interior defensive line out for OSU, there was plenty of attention centered on how it would compensate. The solution, it appeared, was to slide junior defensive end Joey Bosa into that position frequently alongside a rotation of other defensive tackles. But then, the solution once again became a problem, as Bosa was ejected after a targeting call with 5:26 left in the first quarter. It was a huge blow for the OSU defense, which, prior to the penalty, had just intercepted Kizer. The interception was negated and from there, OSU was forced to play without three usual starters on the D-line. Even so, the defense was able to limit the damage done up the middle, as it held the Fighting Irish to just 121 rushing yards. Kizer, who OSU was focused on slowing down on the ground, finished with just 21 yards on 15 attempts. “It just speaks of the program,” Holmes said about the defense still being able to be effective despite not having three starters. “It’s just a ‘next man up’ program. I feel like we played great. We did what he had to do to get the win.”