Archive for July 6th, 2007
source: Daily News
By Mothusi Soloko
KASANE – The looming strike by Eskom employees in South Africa might lead to power blackouts in Botswna, which imports most of its electricity from the neighbour.
However if that happened, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources, Dr Akolang Tombale, said that would come with consequences to Eskom because of its agreement to supply Botswana.
“There are contractual agreements but I do not know the content of the contract,” he said.
On Monday, the South Africa news media indicated that Eskom employees had threatened to go on strike today.
The threat sent alarm bells among South Africans who fear the strike might lead to a total black-out given that the country has been expriencing constant power outages.
As Botswana imports 70 per cent of its power from South Africa, there were fears that [continue reading]
05 July, 2007
GABORONE – The 2 000 delegates who attended last weeks UN Global Forum on reinventing government in Vienna, Austria, have declared that to secure the confidence of citizens in their governments, the state must be and be seen to be legitimate, fair and institutionally strong.
Delegates adopted what is now called The Vienna Declaration. Fifteen countries drafted the declaration, Botswana being the only African countries among them.
The Director of Reforms in the Office of the President, Dr Mpone Kereteletswe served in that drafting committee.
The inclusion of Botswana in the drafting committee was not a surprise as delegates were impressed by President Festus Mogaes address during the opening ceremony and later the presentation of Minister Pandus Skelemani during one of the seven plenary sessions.
A delegate who listened to Mr Skelemanis presentation but declined to disclose her identity, said in an interview, it is just that presentations were not graded, but your countrys presentation was the second best after South Korea, at least that is the view of most delegates.
The declaration now becomes the UNs tool on building trust in government. The Vienna Declaration defines the word legitimacy as deriving from the respect and adherence to fundamental human rights and the constitution, including the separation of powers between the executive and legislative branches of government and the independence of the judiciary.
Elections, states the declaration, confer and sustain political legitimacy when they symbolise and reflect the overall choice of the people.
The Declaration also stresses the importance of a constructive relationship between parliament and the executive for the building of trust as well as the observance and safeguarding of the rule of law. The Vienna declaration also addressed issues on prioritising service delivery and access, increase transparency and accountability to combat corruption, improve access to ICTs, support effective civil society engagement, engage the constructive interest of a free media and bringing government closer to the people.
On prioritisation and service delivery, the declaration states that [continue reading]
05 July, 2007
RAMOTSWA – Balete have applauded government for spreading communication network to the western part of the country.
They said the area have been lagging behind to the extend that as some parts had poor radio signal and no telephones.
They were speaking in a kgotla meeting addressed by the Minister of Communications, Science and Technology, Mrs Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi in Ramotswa this week.
She is touring the country to inform Batswana about the functions and responsibilities of her ministry.
The residents commended the minister for driving efforts to spread developments all over the country to ease communication.
However, some residents including Mr Itumeleng Fight said Batswana need to be educated on the disadvantages and advantages of privatisation.
He was concerned that privatisation of some national asserts will spark retrenchments of workers and worked the already bad unemployment situation in the country.
On community radio stations, Mr Fight, said Setswana should be promoted instead of playing second fiddle to English as it was the case now.
He suggested that the government should undertake a survey be done to determine the number of Setswana speakers in the country. He embraced the envisaged community radio stations as they would promote [continue reading]
05 July, 2007
GABORONE – Botswana is against immediate launching of the United States of Africa as suggested by some countries.
Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Lt Gen. Mompati Merafhe expressed this stance at the ongoing African Union summit in Ghana where some west African countries have suggested advancing on an embryo model of prepared countries.
This is a very dangerous proposition as it gives the impression that you are either with us or against us. In fact, it is a recipe for disaster. Such an approach will certainly undermine the intended goal of our unity and Africas solidarity.
Gen. Merafhe emphasised that Botswana prefers a gradual and incremental approach towards African unity. It agrees with many other African countries that, we should go slow on this process.
It is a forlorn wish, according to Botswana, to talk of economic and political integration when the basics among countries are totally different.
Among the essentials that should be achieved prior to extreme measures are challenges of policy convergence, criteria for joining an African Union government and the question of sovereignty and national identity within the context of African Union government.
And unless a comprehensive audit of the organs and structures of African Union has been undertaken, Botswana believes it would be [continue reading]
05 July, 2007
GABORONE – Botswana has invested about P31 million (US$5 million) in the filming of a movie The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency film and television series.
The Weinstein Company will begin shooting the film on July 9. Places identified for filming include Gaborone, Gabane, Tlokweng, Mochudi and the Okavango Delta.
The movie will go on to become a 13 episode television series. The film is based on Alexander McCall Smiths global best selling The No.1 Ladies Detective Series, which marks a milestone in the history of Botswana.
Minister of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism, Mr Kitso Mokaila says the production will not only help promote the tourism sector but create employment opportunities for Batswana.
He says the film will help sell Botswana because of its geographical location as, countries surrounding it always overshadow it.
He says the film presents a rare opportunity that will help fast track awareness on Botswana as a preferred tourism destination than the book has already created to the world.
Tourism is a very competitive sector. It serves as identity of people and the country. Thus the movie will help highlight the identity of the country. This is a real situation which will put Botswana on the map, he says.
Mr Mokaila negotiated for the shooting of the film to take place in Botswana by lobbying with [continue reading]
05 July, 2007
SELEBI PHIKWE – The MP for Mmadinare, Mr Ponatshego Kedikilwe says a number of diamond cutting and polishing companies have been licensed to operate in the country with the businesses expected to be in full swing by the end of the year.
Addressing kgotla meetings at Tamasane and Folley in his constituency recently, he said some companies have already started their operations, adding that the government was thus wooing commercial banks with the capacity to handle big accounts to set up in Botswana.
Also, Mr Kedikilwe, who is the Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources said some Batswana have already been sent to different countries to learn the trade but encouraged citizens to go beyond cutting and polishing and strive to be diamond magnates, as the country was among the biggest producers of diamonds.
The legislator also briefed the residents on the HIV/AIDS situation, noting that the number of home based care patients has decreased from around 9 500 in 2005 to around 7 045 last year.
He emphasised the importance of partners to go for [continue reading]
Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)
5 July 2007
Posted to the web 5 July 2007
The newly launched marketing, advertising and promotions company, Expo Botswana, plans to open two more branches – one in Selebi/Phikwe, another in Mahalapye – at a combined cost of P100 000 in the next two months.
The two branches will create permanent employment for about six Batswana and that the investment capital outlay to set up each branch is about P100,000.
The company opened a branch in the resort town of Kasane three weeks ago. When operational, the two new branches – which employ at least six people – will bring Expo Botswana’s offices to six nationwide.
Others are the headquarters in Gaborone, Francistown and Maun.
Expo Botswana is a 100 percent citizen-owned media promotional company incorporated in 2004. It has invested P2.5 m to brand itself in the market, generating 20 permanent jobs for Batswana and an estimated 120 contract workers in the process.
Expo Botswana’s Managing Director, Brian Bakeberg says he is happy that his company is [continue reading]
source: yahoo movies
Thursday July 5 7:25 AM ET
Botswana welcomed a crew making a film of a popular series of detective novels set in this southern African country, with officials saying the movie would generate good publicity for Africa.
The film based on the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series by Alexander McCall Smith is expected to be released by Christmas, and has the backing of Botswana’s government.
“Africa for the first time will be shown in its true warmth and welcoming spirit,” Kitso Mokaila, Botswana’s tourism minister, said at a Tuesday news conference.
Singer Jill Scott has been selected to play the lead role of Ramotswe, described in the books as “traditionally built,” a reference to the more fuller figures of southern African women.
The film will be directed by award-winning British director Anthony Minghella of “Cold Mountain” and “The English Patient” fame.
Myra Sekgororoane, chief [continue reading]
source: Times (SA)
Staff Reporter Published:Jul 06, 2007
OFFLINE: Those who can, switch to broadband, but the high cost of local calls means the masses are left behind
THE local Internet population is switching from dial-up to broadband without growing much, a survey titled “Internet Access in SA 2007” by World Wide Worx found.
The number of South Africans with access to the Internet will grow by little more than 3% in 2007 to 3.85 million. This means a mere 8 percent of the population, or 1 in 12 people, will have access to the Internet by the end of this year.
The study forecasts there will be more than 800,000 broadband subscriber accounts. But these represent only 650,000 unique users, or separate individuals. About a third of these are people with Internet access at work and home.
Meanwhile, the number of dial-up users is falling dramatically this year, dropping by 122,000 users, and falling below the million mark for the first time since 2001.
World Wide Worx managing director Arthur Goldstuck said: [continue reading]
Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)
4 July 2007
Posted to the web 5 July 2007
Ministers and senior officials of the five partner countries of the Kavango-Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area (KAZA TFCA) have been called to work together to ensure security of the rich biodiversity area.
The call was made by the Botswana Minister of Environment Wildlife and Tourism Kitso Mokaila at the first ever meeting of the KAZA TFCA countries after the signing of a memorandum of understanding in Gaborone last week. He said the transfrontier park contains the richest biodiversity in the southern African region in terms of species numbers and types. Hence it is important that the partner countries ensure its security for the benefit of the people. The KAZA TFCA partners are Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe. They signed a memorandum of understanding to establish the TFCA in Victoria Falls last year.
Mokaila said that [continue reading]
05/07/2007 17:36 – (SA)
Johannesburg – The Tourism Business Council of South Africa said on Thursday it was concerned about safety during the 2010 Soccer World Cup.
Reacting to the release of the police’s latest crime statistics, council spokesperson Reynold Thakhuli said he was disappointed by Safety and Security Minister Charles Nqakula’s failure to mention strategies for the event.
“As police are declaring war on criminal elements and employing additional resources in areas that pose the biggest problems, priority should also be placed on the 2010 Soccer World Cup tournament.”
Thakhuli said that while the ministry was applauded for a clear and accurate picture of the crime situation in the country, the fact that serious and violent crimes continued to be very high was unacceptable.
“… One of the major impediments of tourism growth in South Africa is the high level of crime… I am afraid the confidence of the world in our country will be [continue reading]
Financial Gazette (Harare)
4 July 2007
Posted to the web 5 July 2007
ZIMBABWE is negotiating a US$2 billion loan with Libya to help stabilise the country’s crisis-hit economy, senior government sources revealed this week.
President Robert Mugabe held meetings last month with Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi during a three-day visit to Tripoli, where, according to senior officials, the loan, whose details remained sketchy at the time of going to print, was discussed.
Information Minister Sikhanyiso Ndlovu said yesterday he did not have the “full details” of the negotiations, referring questions to Finance Minister Samuel Mumbengegwi.
Mumbengegwi said yesterday he “knew nothing about any such deal” and insisted he would not comment on whatever discussions the two leaders might have had.
Only the signing of a “joint permanent commission” was made public after the visit. It has been reported that a “trade and investment” delegation of Libyan businessman would soon visit Zimbabwe, but there is no indication as to whether the group’s visit is linked to the terms of the loan.
But a senior government official said [continue reading]
July 06 2007 at 04:32AM
By Noah Barron
The eNaTIS website that was invaded by a hacker on Wednesday contained no vital data whatsoever, the department of transport said on Thursday.
Despite fears of identity fraud, the public eNaTIS website that was cracked by an individual calling himself “Tao” contained no driver registration information – “a deliberate design choice” – for security reasons, said the department.
“Any attempt to hack this website (www.eNaTIS.com) is totally fruitless in respect of the eNaTIS system. The eNaTIS system can only by accessed by work stations that are authorised to access the system and all communication with the eNaTIS system is encrypted.”
Nevertheless, cyber security experts have [continue reading]
July 06 2007 at 04:38AM
High levels of the toxic heavy metal cadmium have been found in South African pineapples after farmers unwittingly used fertiliser contaminated with this trace element.
As a result, at least one shipment of canned pineapples from SA has been rejected in the European Union.
The fertiliser, zinc sulphate, is used “across the board” by South African agriculture.
Later tests revealed that the fertiliser also contained elevated levels of arsenic and lead.
It had found, in addition to the cadmium, high levels of lead and arsenic
Angry pineapple farmers, who have suffered big losses, blame the department of agriculture for allowing the suppliers to import the contaminated fertiliser from China, and say officials should have checked that the heavy metals did not exceed the maximum allowed limit.
But the department says it does not check for heavy metals in fertiliser or animal feed. It checks only what is stipulated in the Feeds and Fertiliser Act 36 of 1947, and these 60-year-old laws do not lay down any maximum levels for heavy metals.
It appears that these outdated laws are [continue reading]