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Front PagePort Elizabeth-based jazz band Centre Stage put on a show for the delegates at the Telkom Awards gala dinner on the concluding night of this year’s Highway Africa conference. Photo: Alexa Sedgwick

Last night the 17th annual Highway Africa ended on a few jazzy notes, with awards, speeches, good food and entertainment filling the brisk  air around the Settler’s Monument in Grahamstown, South Africa.

To read about the awards, recipients, and for pictures of the night, please download Open Source newspaper edition 3 here.

You can also download older editions of Open Source from our website

Good bye Highway Africans, see you next year!


The Telkom Highway Africa New Media Awards are held yearly to reward innovative use of ICTs in Africa. This year’s finalists are Nigel Mugamu (Zimbabwe) and Jaco Liebenberg (South Africa) in the category for Innovative use of Technology for Community Engagement; John Mokwetsi (Zimbabwe) and Prof Anton Harber (South Africa) for Innovative Newsroom; and Dorothy Dadedjo Fouba (Cameroon) and Limbikani Makani Kabweza (Zimbabwe) for the Best IT Blog category. The Awards ceremony is to be held Monday 2 September at the Monument. Michelle Atagana, Managing Editor at Memeburn and one of this year’s judges, talks to Open Source’s Relebone Myambo about the Awards.

Sipho MasekoBy Sipho Maseko
Group Chief Executive Officer,

Seventeen years ago Telkom sponsored the very first HighwayAfrica Conference. That we have stayed on to this day is testament to the spirit at the heart of my telecommunications group – we value our country and the continent and the role that journalism and the media can play in fostering development and democracy. The theme of the 2013 Highway Africa Conference is most opportune. A corporate citizen like Telkom cannot thrive in an environment of uncertainty – politically, economically and socially. The role of the media in holding us in power – in business, in government and in society, in general – accountable is important. Equally critical is the need for the media to provide platforms for all citizens and voices to be heard.

Telkom has played a huge role over the past century and more in the communications revolution that has redefined business, society – and government. In the process it has built up, and remains the custodian, of the incomparable national asset of the country-wide fixed-line network. Going forward, I believe our responsibility will be even bigger if you believe that the key to overcoming our challenges as a country and as a continent is information. It then becomes clear that Telkom has a central role to play.

It is in this quest to enable communication that we share something in common. Telkom as a company is focused on how our people can be able to unlock their potential in business, education and everyday life, using world-class telecommunications infrastructure, products and services.

I hope you will all have the opportunity to visit the Telkom stand and interact with our staff to know more about us and for us to meet you.

Finally, I would like to state that we do not see our partnership with Rhodes University around this conference as sponsorship but rather an essential investment in the media so that we can strengthen that very important constituency (journalists) in our society.

I wish you a very fruitful 2013 Highway Africa Conference.Telkom_Colour

Only two weeks remain before registration closes for the 17th Annual Highway Africa Conference -the world’s largest annual gathering of African Journalists.

The Highway Africa Conference is a project of Rhodes University (Grahamstown, South Africa), in partnership with Telkom, Absa Barclays and MTN. Over the years the conference has been at the centre of Africa’s debates on the interface of journalism and new media.

This year’s conference will take place at Rhodes University from 1 – 2 September.

With the theme, “Speaking Truth to Power? Media, Politics and Accountability”, the event will see journalists, civil society activists and academics deliberating on African media’s role in holding political authority accountable and also how journalists themselves are accountable through codes of conduct and regulatory frameworks. Other sessions at the conference will focus on social media and how ordinary citizens have used the various platforms to further freedom of expression as well as to hold governments and corporates accountable.

The conference will also host various training workshops, book launches and exhibitions linked to the theme, plus evening gala dinners and networking sessions, including the prestigious Telkom-Highway Africa New Media Awards.

Please register online at

We regret that we are not able to offer scholarships for interested journalists to attend. Please seek sponsorship elsewhere to cover your travel, accommodation, registration fees and airport transfers.

We request you continually check on the website for updates on news and information. We have an exciting programme lined up for you. See you in Grahamstown.

For any conference inquiries please contact Karabo Tledima (Ms), Conference Manager,

Unveiling the plaque for the Telkom Higway Africa Building, Rhodes University, Grahamstown

L-R Dr. Mabizela, Rhodes University, Mr Yeye, SABC Eastern Cape & Mrs Kali Telkom

The official opening of the Telkom Highway Africa Building was officiated by Dr. Sizwe Mabizela,  Dr Sizwe Mabizela, the Deputy Vice Chancellor of Academic and Student Affairs Rhodes University and Mrs Brenda Kali, Telkom Group Executive: Group Communicaqtion and Brand.  Mabizela thanked Telkom for the long standing relationship it has formed with Rhodes University stating that the relationship between Corporate and Academia was vital for sustainable growth and development in Africa.  Kali, graciously accepted the gratitude however spoke emphatically about the role journalism plays in telling the stories of Africa.  Kali emphasised Telkom’s support for journalism and their committment thus far has made them proud to be associated with the high standard of Journalism produced in the industry of media.

Mr. Zola Yeye, Regional Manager, SABC Eastern Cape who was master of ceremonies for the days proceedings further  acknowledged SABC’s pride in the association with Highway Africa.  SABC will be covering the New Media Awards ceremony at the annual SABC Telkom Highway Africa Conference which will be held this year from the 17-19 September 2011, at the Cape Town International Conference Centre (ICC).

Telkom’s association with Rhodes University extends also to the Rhodes Univesity Computer Science Division.  Dr. Peter Clayton Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Development was also present at the official opening acknowledged to witness the ceremony alongside the academics of the Rhodes Univeristy School of Journalism and staff and students of the university. Director of Highway AFrica Chris Kabwato, Director of Highway Africa proudly looked on and acknowledged and applauded the opening with Professor Jane Duncan  Highway Africa Chair of Media and Information Society.

While it was a clear yet wind swept day, it can be said the ceremony was a total success enjoyed by all present.