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ECZ warns independent candidates affiliated to political parties

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THE Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ)has reminded all independent candidates for the forthcoming general election that they should not be affiliated to any political party.

ECZ corporate affairs manager Patricia Luhanga said this is in line with the legal requirements, should stipulates that all independent candidates should relinquished political party membership “at least two months immediately before the date of the election.”

“To this end, independent candidates should desist from using campaign materials for political parties or in any way identify themselves with any political party,” she said

Ms Luhanga said the commission will not hesitate to take appropriate action including disqualification of erring candidates.

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Southern Africa’s next generation of film & TV creators: MultiChoice Talent Factory welcomes Class of 2024

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A FRESH cohort of 20 passionate young filmmakers has begun an exciting year of film and television training at the MultiChoice Talent Factory Southern Africa Academy in Lusaka.

The MTF Southern Africa Academy is one of three on the continent, where students spend 12 months gaining skills in screenwriting, editing, producing and directing – through study, and practical experience on TV and film productions. The fully funded curriculum includes workshops, lectures, masterclasses and assignments.

MTF students learn alongside industry greats and seasoned professionals from across the globe. The final stage of the course sees students developing feature films for broadcast on MultiChoice local channels and Showmax. The most recent MTF Academy cohort also enjoyed an intensive online training course with the New York Film Academy (NYFA).

In Southern Africa, the MTF Academy curriculum is created with MultiChoice Africa partner institution the University of Zambia, which confers the course qualifications upon completion of the academy programme.

This year’s students were chosen after a rigorous six-week selection process of interviews and adjudication by film and television experts, as well as regional academy directors.

At the MTF Southern Africa Academy, 55% of students in this year’s intake are male and 45% are female – coming from Zambia, Namibia, Mozambique, Malawi, Botswana, Angola and Zimbabwe.

Since its establishment in 2018, the Africa-wide MTF Academy programme has produced more than 300 graduates, qualified young filmmakers who are now taking African stories to the world.

“In the African film and television space, there is a risk that local productions could be crowded out by high quality, foreign-produced films and series,” says MTF Southern Africa Director Christopher Puta. “Fortunately, MultiChoice has ensured this does not happen, by investing in developing local skills through our well-equipped MTF Academies. Even before they graduate, these students will be involved in creating relevant content that reflects the lives and the tastes of African people.”

The training that the MTF Academy provides is geared to broadening the skillsets of aspirant filmmakers, and to empowering them to work in various creative disciplines – not only the film industry. An MTF survey has found that around 92% of MTF Academy graduates go on to work in the creative sector.

“Once they leave our Academy, many MTF graduates go on to work on MultiChoice productions, or with other broadcasters in the region,” says Puta. “Other graduates start businesses and become our partners and suppliers in the industry. MTF is about developing the skills to support a vibrant, collaborative industry environment.”

Last year, the MTF Academy Southern Africa graduated a talented cohort of passionate and skilled young creatives, many of whom joined local productions with the Zambia National Film Commission (ZNFC), as well as pan-African film and televisions productions including Mpali, Zuba, Ten Tamanga Street, Makofi and My Horror Love Story Zambia. And have also worked on feature films produced in Namibia that premiered on Showmax and other local channels in Portuguese-speaking markets such as Kwenda Magic and Maningue Magic.

“The MTF Southern Africa class will support the MultiChoice vision of producing hyperlocal content for local markets,” says Puta. “We’ve seen how audiences react to content made by other Africans, and we look forward to seeing the work produced by this year’s group of MTF students.”

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World Bank approves USD$ 270 million to Zambia) Tanzania transport and trade projects

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MORE than USD$200 million has been allocated to Zambia by the World Bank to help improve the transport and trade sectors.

The funds which are a Grant have been allocated between Zambia and Tanzania under the Transport Corridors for Economic Resilience (TRACER) project.

The six-year TRACER project aims at improving efficiency, connectivity, and climate resilience of key regional transport and trade corridors in Eastern and Southern Africa.

Minister of Finance and National Planning Situmbeko Musokotwane says the Grant marks a significant commitment by the World Bank and the Zambian Government to improve the country’s connectivity to east African sea coasts.

“The Zambian Government welcomes the approval of a USD$270 million Grant by the World Bank for improvement of transport and trade between Tanzania and Zambia under the Transport Corridors for Economic Resilience (TRACER) Project The Minister says the gesture by the World Bank is a powerful affirmation of the confidence that it has in not only Zambia’s development policies but also in the regional integration initiatives such as the TRACER Project that are pursued in collaboration with neighbouring countries,” he said.

He noted that the USD$270 million Grant also marks a significant commitment by the World Bank and the Zambian Government to improve the country’s connectivity to east African sea coasts and boosts regional trade and transport integration.

“The funds will help the Tanzania Zambia corridor to get some relief from the current transport related gridlock caused by years of infrastructure disrepair and divided attention to efficiency requirements in our quest for economic resilience,” he said.

Dr Musokotwane said businesses along the corridor and cross border traders between the two countries will benefit from the initiative

He said the TRACER Project will also improve transport and trade facilitation along the corridor by rehabilitating the Serenje-Mpika section of the corridor.

“It will also help in developing a One Stop Border Post (OSBP) at Nakonde, and converting the existing corridor into a SMART version,” he said.

(Mwebantu, Thursday, 22nd February, 2024)

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YANGO announces support measures for drivers in Zambia

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International ride-hailing service Yango has announced support measures for partner drivers in Zambia. The measures, which are the first steps in a long line of initiatives planned by Yango, come as a result of several months of carefully studying the new economic conditions of the Zambian market. They include several benefits streamlined to support the drivers and reduce the economic burden while creating a fertile platform for them to work and improve their lives.

The first of these support measures is the increase of the cost per km inside the Yango tariff for the drivers up to 23%. This increase is geared towards reaching economic balance and providing conditions of service that would be mutually beneficial for all stakeholders. The breakdown is as follows:

  • In economy mode, the cost of a kilometer in urban cities will increase by 11% and the cost of a kilometer in suburbs will increase by 22%.
  • In comfort mode, the cost of a kilometer in urban cities will increase by 12% and the cost of a kilometer in suburbs will increase by 17%.
  • In сomfort+ mode, the cost of km in urban cities will increase by 15% and the cost of a kilometer in suburbs will increase by 23%.

Yango Zambia Country Manager Kabanda Chewe said “We’re committed to supporting Yango partner drivers in such difficult times and this is part of a long list of measures we have been proactively working on for a while now. We are always looking for ways to ensure fair pricing for all our stakeholders while creating a balance in our ecosystem for our partners, drivers and consumers. Together, we can create a better future for urban mobility in Zambia”.

Yango also announces the distribution of fuel discount cards to aid drivers save on their purchases, among the 100 best drivers chosen in accordance with the customers feedback. This, the company believes will help increase efficiency and serve as a cushion during this challenging period. The card allows drivers to get a discount of K1.0/litre on fuel bought at any Mount Meru gas station in Lusaka. For example, if a driver buys 10 liters of fuel a day, they get to save up to K300 each month.

Yango has also highlighted that the best drivers will receive food discount vouchers of K50 each to be used on Yango Deli. This is to support them save heavily on lunch and ensure that they are fit and healthy while executing their daily tasks.

One of the beneficiary partner drivers, Daniel Simuyamba, expressed his appreciation to Yango for this initiative.

He said “Thank you for recognising my work and this encourages me to do my best. This will make a big difference in terms of my expenses. Fuel is a big part of our business as drivers and this support from Yango will help me save more and improve my income”.

Yango has also highlighted the importance of the safety of all its stakeholders, specifically drivers and passengers. The company continues to invest heavily in advanced safety features in the Zambian market and encourages drivers to utilize the safety features in the Yango Pro app to stay safe at all times. It also emphasized that more safety features were expected to be launched in the coming weeks.

About Yango

Yango is an international tech company that transforms global sourced technologies into everyday services for local enrichment. With an unwavering commitment to innovation, we reshape and enhance leading cutting-edge technologies from around the world into seamlessly integrated daily services for diverse regions.

Our mission is to bridge the gap between leading world innovations and local communities, fostering connections and enhancing everyday living experiences.

Yango, provides through its superapp and ride-hailing services across 20+ countries in Africa, Latin America, Europe, and the Middle East.  Yango’s multilingual app is available for free on Android and iOS.

For more information, please contact: pr@yango.com

 

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