Good News


Media statement

8 September 2016


The Department of Basic Education (DBE) is proud to announce that it has been awarded a UNESCO International Literacy Award.  The 2016 UNESCO Confucius Prize for Literacy is for the Department’s Kha Ri Gude Mass Literacy Campaign and will be handed over at a ceremony to be held in Paris on Thursday, 8 September 2016.

The Kha Ri Gude Mass Literacy Campaign was launched in 2008 to fulfil the ambitions of the Freedom Charter. Through the campaign recruits volunteers who make up the thousands of community-based coordinators, supervisors and educators that are engaged to run the literacy courses every year since the inception of the campaign. The volunteers teach at community-based learning centres across the country as well as in informal venues such as backyards, local churches and even bus-shelters.

To date the campaign has touched 4.7 million people across the country and focuses on basic literacy and numeracy skills for people who were never afforded the opportunity to learn to read and write.

The UNESCO Jury appreciated the Kha Ri Gude programme for its well-developed mass literacy campaign that applied scientific research on how illiterate adults read. The panel found it impressive that since its inception in 2008, the programme had taught urban and rural based adults in 11 official languages including Braille and to date it has reached 4.7 million South Africans, mostly women.

Since 1967, UNESCO has awarded International Literacy Prizes to outstanding and innovative programmes that promote literacy, and this year UNESCO awards laureates from around the world under the theme: Innovation in Literacy.

The Minister of Basic Education Mrs Angie Motshekga will be represented by the South African Ambassador to France and Permanent Representative to UNESCO, HE Mr. Rapulane Molekane, who will receive the award on behalf of the Department and the country. 

The Department of Basic Education is proud of all those who have been involved in Kha Ri Gude over the past eight years, and this award is testament to the hard work and dedication of the officials, as well as the volunteers and participants of the Kha Ri Gude mass literacy campaign.



Enquiries:     Elijah Mhlanga – 083 580 8275

Troy Martens – 079 899 3070






6 SA hotels in world's best 50

Monday, 29 July 2013

9 African hotels, 6 from South Africa, have been placed in the list of top 50 hotels in the world, by the readers of Travel+Leisure magazine.

Travel+Leisure magazine asked their readers to vote in the 18th annual World’s Best Awards using categories such as rooms, location, service, food, and value. The resulting list is not only a valuable resource for trip planning, but reveals the destinations that are important now.

The good news is that 9 hotels are in Africa, 6 in South Africa. They are:


  • Mombo Camp and Little Mombo Camp, Botswana was voted as the best in the world
  • Singita Kruger National Park was voted as the 3rd best 
  • Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve, South Africa came 9th
  • Singita Sabi Sand, South Africa came 10th
  • Cape Grace, Cape Town, South Africa was voted into 26th place
  • andBeyong Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp, Kenya was 34th
  • Londolozi Game Reserve, South Africa was placed 39th
  • Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at Nile Plaza, Egypt was 40th
  • Sacon Hotel, Villas & Spa, Johannesburg, South Africa came 50th

SA - the Good News via

South African hotels on "world's best service" list

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Three Cape Town hotels have made it onto the "World's Best Service" list in the Africa and Middle East category in an international survey by the US edition of Travel and Leisure released in the magazine's June 2013 issue.

The Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa took top spot, while the Cape Grace and the One & Only took second and fourth respectively.

The best service category of the magazine's annual "World Best Awards" survey aims to recognise the best hotels, resorts, airlines and cruise liners around the world as rated by its readers.

"Excellent service is a definitive factor in repeat visits by overseas travellers," Western Cape Finance, Economic Development and Tourism Minister Alan Winde said in a statement last week.

"I hope these awards serve as an inspiration to the Western Cape hospitality industry to consistently strive for the highest service levels. I am also confident these awards will encourage more international visitors to our world-class destination," Winde said.

Johannesburg's Saxon Boutique Hotel, Villas & Spa also featured on the best service list in the Africa and the Middle East category, scoring the same as the One & Only.

Singita Kruger National Park and Singita Sabi Sand also made their way onto the list, coming in at second and fifth respectively in the resorts and lodges category.

The overall results for best service were reached by surveying the general managers at the top 16 hotels in each region.

According to the results of this survey: 44% of general managers admit to using Google and Facebook to research guests prior to check-in; 31% ensure each guest is personally greeted by a manager upon arrival; 50% have a staff-to-guest ratio of at least 1.5 to 1; and 56% offer room service 24 hours a day.

SA - the Good News via

South Africa voted top 'dream destination'

13 May 2013

South Africa has been voted the top destination by members of the world's largest travel and lifestyle social network, Where Are You Now? (WAYN), in the site's recent "dream destination competition".

The country beat Brazil, India, Dubai, Fiji, Turkey and Indonesia with 15 300 votes from members around the world.

A total 78 000 votes were counted for all seven of the destinations. The nominated countries and cities were selected through market research and tracking user engagement on WAYN.

"All seven countries and cities nominated were extremely worthy contenders and dream destinations in their own right," WAYN co-founder and chief risk officer, Jeremy Touze, said in a statement last week.

"The immense popularity of South Africa as a tourist destination has been reinforced by this competition, and interestingly the activity we are seeing correlates with the recent announcement by President Jacob Zuma that the amount of foreign visitors to South Africa has grown by 300% to 13.5-million visitors, 9.2-million of which were tourists."

Touze said South Africa's strongest following comes from Asia, in particular India. "Out of the 408 000 fans of South Africa on WAYN, there are now over 108 000 fans from India alone," he said.

"We are privileged to live in an incredible country, a land of spectacular wildlife, awe-inspiring adventure and unique heritage and culture," said chief executive officer of South African Tourism, Thulani Nzima.

"It is home to warm, welcoming people, eager to share it with travellers from around the world.

"We are already touched by the hundreds of thousands of friends our destination has made on the platform and we are delighted with this accolade, which we hope will make more people's dreams of visiting South Africa a reality," Nzima said.

SAinfo reporter

President Jacob Zuma announces impressive growth of 10.2% in international tourist visitors to South Africa in 2012

A total of 9 188 368 international tourists visited South Africa in 2012, 10.2% more than the 8 339 354 tourists who travelled to the country in 2011, President Jacob Zuma announced in Cape Town on 25 April 2013.

South Africa’s tourist growth rate in 2012 was more than double the rate of average global tourist growth of about 4% estimated by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation in 2012.

South Africa saw particularly good overseas tourist growth (tourists from outside of the African continent), which grew by 15.1%, one of the highest growth rates in the world last year.

Europe remained the highest source of overseas tourists to South Africa, growing by 9.5% on 2011 figures and attracting a total of 1 396 978 tourists to the country last year – more than half the total number of overseas tourists.

The United Kingdom continues to be South Africa’s biggest overseas tourism market, with 438 023 UK tourists travelling to South Africa in 2012 (4.2% up on 2011 figures). The United States is South Africa’s second biggest overseas tourism market, with 326 643 tourists from the USA visiting in 2012 (up 13.6% on 2011 figures), with Germany the third biggest overseas market with 266 333 tourists (up 13% on 2011 figures). China has become South Africa’s fourth biggest overseas tourism market, 132 334 (up 55.9% on 2011 figures), with France now South Africa’s fifth biggest overseas tourism market with 122 244 tourists in 2012 (up 16% on 2011 figures).

Particularly strong growth was recorded in 2012 from Asia (up 33.7% on the figures recorded in 2011), driven by growth from China and India, and Central and South America (up 37.0%), thanks to continued good tourist growth out of Brazil.

Regarding Portugal, 48 210 tourists travelled to South Africa in 2012 (up 19.6% on 2011 figures).

“We are extremely happy with our tourist arrivals figures for 2012 and our continued tourism growth from all regions. This phenomenal tourism growth is evidence that we are successfully setting ourselves apart in a competitive marketplace and that South Africa’s reputation as a friendly, welcoming, inspiring and unique tourism destination continues to grow,” said President Zuma, when announcing the 2012 international tourism statistics at a media briefing at the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront today.

President Zuma said that the 2012 tourist growth figures confirmed that the country’s tourism marketing efforts were on track, backed by a strong, professional tourism industry that offered a wide variety of tourist offerings to suit every experience and every budget.

“These figures give us confidence that we are making good progress in our efforts to grow the tourism industry in South Africa. But we cannot become complacent. More and more countries around the world are realising the opportunity that tourism presents for growing their economies and creating jobs and our geographic position makes our fight for the global tourism share more difficult than most. As a tourism industry we have to remain committed to working together to grow tourism to our country, with the support of all South Africans, all of whom have the power to be important tourism ambassadors,” said President Zuma.

While President Zuma emphasised the importance of continuing to maintain and grow the country’s market share in its core markets of Europe and North America, he was excited about the growth recorded from the emerging markets of regional Africa, Asia and South America.

“A few years ago we took the decision to begin actively marketing destination South Africa in emerging markets, which has yielded extremely positive results. Since 2009 arrivals from China have more than tripled, arrivals from Brazil have more than doubled and arrivals from India have almost doubled,” said President Zuma.

China jumped from being South Africa’s eighth largest overseas source market in 2011 to its fourth largest overseas source market in 2012.  In 2012, 132 334 people visited South Africa from China, a 55.9% increase in growth, driven in part by the opening up of a direct flight between Beijing and Johannesburg in January 2012.

The impressive growth in arrivals from India continued in 2012, with 106 774 Indian visitors to South Africa, growth of 18.2%, making it South Africa’s eighth largest overseas source market.

Brazil continued to show impressive growth rates becoming a top ten overseas source market for arrivals for the first time (ninth). A total of 78 376 Brazilians came to South Africa in 2012, a 44.7% increase on 2011 numbers.

“The BRICS summit held in Durban last month highlighted the economic potential that our affiliation with this bloc has for South Africa and the tourism industry is no exception. Tourist arrivals from the BRICS countries accounted for 330 834 of our international tourist numbers in 2012 and the potential for further growth is huge.  Greater collaboration at this level will no doubt go a long way in making South Africa a more accessible destination for visitors from these markets and ensuring that these countries continue to fuel our industry’s success going forward,” said President Zuma.

“Regional Africa remains the pillar of our tourism economy and we are happy to see that arrivals from the region have maintained the solid growth path we have become accustomed to. Africa’s importance to our tourism industry will continue to grow, as African economies are amongst the best performing economies in the world at the moment,” President Zuma added.

Foreign tourists spent a total of R76.4 billion in South Africa last year, up 7.6% on the total foreign direct spend in the country in 2011. Spend by tourists from the Americas, Asia & Australasia as well as Europe have all increased. The only decrease in spend was from tourists from our continental land markets, which lead to the average spend per tourist decreasing by 2,3%.

The average length of stay decreased from 8.5 nights per tourist in 2011 to 7.6 nights in 2012 driven off shorter stays by tourists from most of our markets. This is a global trend that affects all our competitors due to the economic downturn around the world.

President Zuma also referred to the latest Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) released by Statistics South Africa, for the period ending December 2011. The TSA provides a tourism dimension to the System of National Accounts and contains important information about the performance of the Tourism Sector in the economy. The TSA reported the following results:

- Direct tourism contribution to GDP went up by 5% to R84.3 billion in 2011.

- Direct employment in the sector as a percentage of overall employment in the country went up from 4.3%   to 4.5% between 2010 and 2011. This was as a result of the increase of about 31,000 direct jobs in the sector from 2010 to a total direct employment of 598,432 in 2011.

- An increase of 3.3% in expenditure by foreign tourists to R71.7 billion.

- The total domestic tourism expenditure increased from R69 billion in 2010 to R101 billion in 2011, which translates to an increase of over R30 billion.

These results clearly show that we are well on our way to achieving the goals that we have set for ourselves for the tourism sector.
Office of the Ministry:
Melene Rossouw
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Issued by Ministry of Tourism