Archive for November 27th, 2008
source: The Botswana Gazette
Questions over Promotions. More top senior civil servants are expected to leave the public service at the end of this year through forced and voluntary retirement.
When Lt Gen Seretse Khama Ian Khama took over as president, a number of top appointments were made but some of those he has appointed are already on their way out.
It is understood that the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Trade and Industry Chakalisa and his deputy Mr. Kombani will leave the public service at the end of December. Chakalisa was reassigned to the Ministry of Trade from the Ministry of Agriculture in April this year.
The Gazette has leant that he would have long gone but was given an extension to the end of the year.
Dr. Lucas Gakale, the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, is also expected to vacate his post at the end of the year. It is understood that there is [continue reading]
source: International Herald Tribune
The Associated Press
Published: November 26, 2008
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa: Zimbabwe’s neighbors should close their borders in an attempt to bring down President Robert Mugabe, Botswana’s foreign minister said Wednesday in the strongest call yet for action from Africa.
Foreign Minister Phandu Skelemani told BBC World News television that southern African nations have failed to move Mugabe with mediation and they should now impose sanctions.
The leaders should “tell Mugabe to his face, ‘Look, now you are on your own, we are switching off, we are closing your borders,’ and I don’t think he would last. If no petrol went in for a week, he can’t last,” Skelemani said.
Zimbabwe’s opposition leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, said Wednesday that “no progress” is being made in a new round of talks that started Tuesday and that Mugabe and his party’s “intransigence to date is making that (agreement) appear increasingly unlikely.”
Zimbabwe’s government made no immediate comment.
The U.S. ambassador to Zimbabwe, James McGee, also called for [continue reading]
26 November 2008
Zimbabwe’s Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has publicly repudiated the mediation of South Africa’s former president, Thabo Mbeki, in the country’s crisis, while Botswana has suggested President Robert Mugabe could be forced from power by a blockade of his borders.
MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai said in a statement issued Wednesday that the MDC’s relationship with Mbeki – the Southern African Development Community (SADC) facilitator of talks on Zimbabwe – had irretrievably broken down.
Mbeki “does not appear to understand how desperate the problem in Zimbabwe is, and the solutions he proposes are too small,” Tsvangirai said.
“In addition, his partisan support of [Mugabe's] Zanu-PF, to the detriment of genuine dialogue, has made it impossible for the MDC to continue negotiating under [continue reading]
source: The Botswana Gazette
Intelligence Tribunal Dismissed as BDP Activists. After Parliament approved the establishment of the Intelligence Tribunal in terms of the Intelligence and Security Act, questions about the three-person committee are beginning to surface.
It was announced recently that the tribunal was made up of Mr. Isaac Seloko, Mrs. Tsetsele Fantan and Mr. Adolf Hirschfeldt.
Opposition party members have dismissed the tribunal as consisting of BDP activists, hence lacking credibility.
Experts have also emphasized the need for the public to have faith in the tribunal.
The Directorate on Intelligence Services began operating in April this year and is headed by Mr. Isaac Kgosi, a former soldier and a former private secretary to Lt. Gen. Ian Kgama when he was vice president.
Parliamentarians emphasized the need for oversight of the Directorate of Intelligence and Security Services when it was established, saying in the majority of countries such services are usually abused for political, economic and individual reasons.
Mr. Dumelang Saleshando MP for Gaborone Central told The Gazette in an interview that [continue reading]
The days when ordinary citizens would flaunt their passports may be over.
The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs, Segakweng Tsiane has announced that not everyone will have the new e-passports that will be introduced in 2010.
Speaking at a ceremony to mark the tender award to G&D of Germany at Phakalane Monday night, Tsiane said traditionally Botswana have made a passport a must have.
“People are treating it like a wallet…but you need it because you have to travel, if you are not, it should be secondary…if you want to travel there is emergency document…if you go to neighbouring countries like South Africa, Namibia, Zambia, for instance, it is not going to be easy to have the e-passport. We will prepare you travel document”, she said in her remarks.
Tsiane also told the gathering that it will take 12 months to replace the e-passport on top of the fact that one will also have to pay P1000. ” If you lose it, may never have a passport at all,” she said.
In a separate interview, the [continue reading]
Lawyers acting for two Gaborone nightclubs will this week apply for the jailing of the Commissioner of Police for contempt of court. Others to be cited in the application, for defying a court order, include the Station Commander of Gaborone West Police Station and the section leader of a unit that raided the nightclubs on Friday night.
The lawyers are instituting contempt of court proceedings after the police ordered the closure of Grand West and Satchmo’s nightclubs last Friday night. The police claimed that the two nightclubs – both in Gaborone West – were operating without licences. The two nightclubs have been closed since Friday on police orders.
The police action comes after the High Court granted an interim order that, among others, stipulates that the police should not harass the nightclubs following their [continue reading]
26 November, 2008
PALAPYE – Central Transport Organisation (CTO) officials have raised concern at the high number of boarded vehicles.
Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Works and Transport, Mr Louis Malikongwa announced during a recent CTO fleet management meeting with heads of departments that they auction about 1800 vehicles per annum Mr Malikongwa expressed concern at the rate ,which government vehicles are boarded, saying this causes a backlog of vehicle replacements in most of the departments.
“The rate at which government vehicles are boarded is very worrisome. In the financial year 2007/8 about 2700 vehicles were boarded and as we speak we recently auctioned 1200 vehicles.” Mr Malikongwa indicated , to that even though government vehicles are boarded at a higher rate the replacement of such vehicles is done at a slow rate and cited financial difficulties as a major impediment.
“The current replacement rate of boarded vehicles is about 38-40 per cent whereas the backlog stands at about 60 per cent.
Lack of funds is one of the factors contributing to [continue reading]
November 26 2008 at 06:07PM
About 5092 licences were cancelled after they were found to have been be issued fraudulently, the transport department said on Wednesday.
Spokesperson Collen Msibi said the fake licences were among 7,4 million investigated by Special Investigating Unit (SIU) in a countrywide operation.
“The department commissioned the SIU in February 2005 as part of its anti-corruption strategy to root out corruption in the issuing of licences,” he said.
“To date, more than 1269 private individuals and 82 corrupt officials have also been arrested.” The aim of the operation was to identify and cancel invalid licences.
“We want to clamp down on corrupt individuals and officials who are participating in fraudulent activities within driving licence testing centres,” Msibi said. Earlier in the day, the SIU arrested four people in Velddrif in the Western Cape for [continue reading]
The world’s largest diamond company, De Beers, says it is putting in place a number of measures to lessen the effects of the global economic slowdown and will have to cut production if necessary.
De Beers Botswana’s Public and Corporate Affairs Manager, Charmaine Muir-Revaka, says they are taking proactive steps to minimise short-term consequences of the crisis on itself and its partners.
“The focus of De Beers’ response to the current challenges includes engagement of our partners and clients to ensure that the actions we take individually position the diamond industry favourably now and in future,” Muir-Revaka says.
“We have also increased our advertising expenditure in the main diamond jewellery consumer markets in order to drive demand, especially in the Christmas season. If deemed the right thing to do, De Beers is also fully prepared to reduce production levels from its mines to bring these in line with prevailing demand for [continue reading]
26 November, 2008
Central Transport Organization (CTO) has since October this year been using only genuine parts in repairs and maintenance of government vehicles, Assistant Minister of Works and Transport, Mr Frank Ramsden has said.
This followed an evaluation of the organization’s internal maintenance which revealed that most failures on vehicles were due to use of pirate spare parts.
Further, the minister said CTO sub contracted jobs that it had no capacity to do internally or were specialized in nature.
“These are mainly major components and major accidents repairs, “he said. In an [continue reading]
26/11/2008 15:53 – (SA)
Johannesburg – High levels of melamine found in two baby formula products recalled this week might be from animal feed, the KwaZulu-Natal health department said on Wednesday.
This week the department recalled a batch of Nestlé’s Nido Growing up Milk for one-year-olds manufactured in June, and a batch of Lactogen Starter Infant Formula with iron manufactured in July, said provincial health department spokesperson Leon Mbangwa.
Mbangwa said tests done this month on a sample showed that Lactogen contained a level of 1.6 mg/kg of melamine and Nido 3 mg/kg of melamine.
“This is more than the internationally accepted level of 1mg/kg for foodstuffs intended for infants and young children, such as infant formula, applied by the department of health as a cut-off level.”
Mbangwa said information from the manufacturer indicated that the product was made in South Africa and contained only locally-produced ingredients like fresh milk.
Agriculture department informed
“The manufacturer has determined that the source of the [continue reading]
The increased contribution of the private sector shows that the ball is changing hands in terms of economic activity, a welcome development at this time of economic diversification, a report by Capital Securities says.
But the November edition of preliminary GDP figures for 2007/08 shows a slacking real growth of 3.3 percent compared to 5.3 percent in 2006/07. The slowdown is attributed to the mining sector having recorded a negative growth of 3.5 percent against a positive 4.5 percent over 2006/07, whilst the non-mining GDP grew 8.0 percent from 5.7 percent during 2006/07.
Per capita growth was down to 2.6 percent from 4.4 percent. Real growth in the sector has been steady since 2004/05. The mining sector, apart from a boost over 2006/07, has been in decline for over the same period. “The year of negative growth for a second time in five years comes as the world faces a slowdown in commodity prices as well as a general recession,” the Capital Securities report [continue reading]
26 November, 2008
SEROWE – Communities have been encouraged to utilise the fisheries project the ministry of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism has embarked upon.
Serowe District Wildlife Coordinator Mr Gift Otumile ,made the call in an interview.
He said the fisheries department has started stocking dams across the country with fish so that communities could have an extra source of income and food.
As the adage goes its better to teach one to fish rather than give them fish. In that light, he said some villages in the North East District and Moiyabana village in the Central District have already had their community dams stocked with fish, and the project is set to roll out to other parts of the country.
“Our fisheries unit is responsible for making an analysis of which dams are ready to [continue reading]