Archive for May 23rd, 2007

source: allAfrica

This Day (Lagos)

23 May 2007
Posted to the web 23 May 2007

Eromosele Abiodun

Billed as the “Davos of Africa”, the 17th annual World Economic Forum meeting in Africa, scheduled to convene in Cape Town, South Africa next month is expected to help “raise the bar” of development across the continent.

Under the theme “Raising the Bar”, the high-level gathering of representatives from governments, business, international organisations, civil society as well as experts will focus on leveraging Africa’s increasingly strategic role in the global arena.

It will also feature innovative partnerships to sustain growth, address human and infrastructure capacity constraints, and assess opportunities for an improved African investment climate. Over 700 participants are already scheduled to participate.

Haiko Alfeld, Director and Head of Africa at the World Economic Forum (WEF) said, “Buoyed by strong growth, and on the back of booming commodity prices, improved governance and strong Asian interest, Africa is making its move … business has much to gain by dedicating skills, technology and resources to ensure this new growth is sustained, and recent African successes are replicated.”

Leading political leaders who have already confirmed their participation are: Joseph Kabila, President of the Democratic Republic of Congo; Thabo Mbeki, President of South Africa; Levy Mwanawasa, President of Zambia; Bingu Wa Mutharika, President of Malawi; and Abdoulaye Wade, President of Senegal.

Other prominent figures who will [continue reading]

source: BOPA
23 May, 2007

GABORONE – Production team for the forth-coming Hollywood movie The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency is expected in Gaborone end of month to prepare for the shooting of the movie based on Alexander McCall Smiths serialised novel.

It will be the first time ever that a Hollywood movie is shot in Botswana. The film script for MmaRamotswe, which was written by Anthony Mighella, has changed from the original one in the book.

While in the book, MmaRamotswe is just a simple woman addicted to Rooibos tea, the theme of the film revolves around a love story.

Executive Director of CamelThorn Media Trust, Ernst Engels, said through pre-production the team will set up an office, get their cast together both local and abroad as well as set up their crew and production staff.

They will also organise hiring equipment, add and contract local crew, do location scouting and contract locations, he said.

Engels said the team will also finalise the script and identify which sequence scenes will be shot before they start the actual shooting.

The arriving, staying and working of a major film production crew from outside the country translates directly into income for the country, he said.

Engels said while lead character, MmaRamotswe, was not selected from Botswana, the good news is that supporting actors will be given a chance while getting the experience of working in a film directed by Minghella.

Some Batswana said in interviews that the shooting of the movie in Botswana will help [continue reading]

 source: Mmegi Online


Gaborone City is gradually turning into an urban “cattle post”. For some time now the capital city has been invaded by livestock from neighbouring villages like Tlokweng, Gabane, Mmopane and Mogoditshane.

Cattle, goats and even horses have now become a familiar sight on Gaborone streets.
These days residents of Gaborone do not have to drive to the country side if they want to see domestic animals, as the unwelcome visitors can be found right on their doorsteps. Horses have only recently joined the “great trek” to Gaborone and have been spotted grazing in residential areas.

A resident of Phase II said they are troubled by the stray horses, who he says, destroy plants in their gardens.

Motorists also have to contend with the roaming livestock and especially the cattle have caused numerous road accidents in the city.

Sometime back, a vehicle hit a cow near Gaborone Sun Hotel.

It has become common to see motorists flicking hazard lights to warn others about the looming danger posed by livestock.

Gaborone Mayor, Harry Mothei said this is a disturbing trend, adding that they are concerned by the situation. Mothei said council officials always impound the [continue reading]

source: allAfrica

Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)

21 May 2007
Posted to the web 22 May 2007

Wanetsha Mosinyi

A new player in the commercial banking sector, Bank Gaborone, has embarked on a countrywide installation of convenience Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) at selected businesses and retail outlets.

The bank, which opened its doors to the public last year and was confined only to Gaborone, has contracted a specialist company, ATM Solutions, to install the indoor mini-ATMs.

The Marketing Manager of the bank, Saone Balopi, has confirmed the launching of the project, saying they want to provide their customers with a convenient service whenever they are away from Gaborone.

Vincent Kannemeyer of ATM Solutions said five outlets in Francistown alone have been identified for the installation of the indoor machines.

“We have already installed one ATM at Diggers Inn. Other outlets, like Spar Meriting and a petrol station, are on the list for ATM installations,” Kannemeyer said.

Some of the other towns and villages earmarked for installation of Bank Gaborone convenience ATMs are Mahalapye, Palapye/Serowe, Nata, Maun, and Selebi Phikwe.

The machines will offer services like withdrawals and balance checking, and will be VISA acceptable.

“These ATMs do not swallow ATM cards. They will also minimise the risk of [continue reading]

source: BOPA
22 May, 2007

LETLHAKANE – Debswana has committed P78 million this year on Information and Communications Technology (ICT) provision for its operations that include staff training.

This was the case as the General Manager of Orapa and Letlhakane Mines, Mr Sebetlela Sebetlela, said the companys core business of mining and recovering diamonds efficiently and responsibly could only be realised with the extensive use of ICT.

In pursuit of our vision for excellence we recognise the centrality of our people to our success. We recognise the need to empower everyone of our employees with the opportunity to utilise ICT in their normal duties.

He said at the commemoration of the World Telecommunications and Information Society Day (WTISD) in Rakops in the Boteti Sub-District on Thursday that Debswanas aspirations where all other companies come for best-in-class standards of operational excellence in the mining of diamonds could be achieved with leveraging the power of ICT.

Since charity begins at home, Mr Sebetlela explained that the company has enriched its pre-and primary schools curriculum with ICT instructions and practice, as their future contribution to the countrys economy will rely even more on ICT for success.

In its endeavour to advance the course of a declaration of a recent Pan-African ICT in Government summit, he said Debswana has, through its corporate social investment programme, extended access to [continue reading]

source: allAfrica

The Voice (Francistown)

22 May 2007
Posted to the web 22 May 2007

In a bid to understand the tourism atmosphere in the country, Voice Business Reporter Chedza Simon interviewed Keitumetse Setlang, the Public Relations Manager of Botswana Tourism Board (BTB). She articulated some of their successes, challenges and avenues to growing the tourism sector. Below is how she responded.

Q. How is the tourism climate at the moment?

The tourism climate is good at the moment. The UNWTO has forecast that by the year 2020 the number of international arrivals will have soared up to 1.6 billion, with an expected US$ 2 trillion receipts. We need to ensure that Botswana benefits from this projected growth. We have seen a steady increase in the number of tourist arrivals over the years and with the increased marketing efforts of the Botswana Tourism Board we should see these numbers increasing further.

Q. What are you doing to enhance growth?

One of the Board’s mandates is to develop and improve [continue reading]

source: allAfrica

Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)

21 May 2007
Posted to the web 22 May 2007

Bame Piet

Several retail companies in Gaborone have complained that the newly introduced plastics are expensive and impact badly on customers. Assistant Manager of Pick n’ Pay Riverwalk Mall, Snyman Stefan, said in an interview that though they have not yet started selling the plastics the customers are somehow paying for the expensive plastics.

He said that the recent price hike in many shops could be linked to the introduction of the stronger plastics. He is worried that people still take plastics and throw them away. He suggested that paper bags could have been the best solution to replace plastic bags. However, he was hopeful that things will improve in time and people will learn to keep plastics for future use.

General Manager of Shoprite Checkers Botswana, Bobby Rashforth, said his shop implemented the introduction of the stronger plastic at a high price. “They are 120 percent expensive than the old plastics,” he told Monitor. He said that the moment customers are not paying for the plastics, adding that they are waiting for another step from Government.

Choppies General Manager, Ram Ottapath, however said the plastics are 30 percent more expensive than the old ones and [continue reading]

22 May, 2007

GABORONE – Botswana Defence Force (BDF) recruitment board will soon start the selection and short listing of female officer cadets.

Director of Protocol and Public Affairs, Lt Col. Mogorosi Baatweng said afterwards potential candidates would be invited for an introductory briefing, psychometric testing, oral and written interviews and group testing techniques.

The BDF advertised 30 posts for female officer cadets at the beginning of April and the deadline has since passed.

Lt Col. Baatweng said the selected candidates will undergo medical examination and other recruitment procedures.

Lt General Tebogo Masire, the BDF commander, said at a recent press conference that female officer cadets would be trained in Tanzania starting next month or July.

General said P1.2 million was budgeted for training which would last 12 months. BOPA


22 May 2007

UK-based global cellular group Vodafone is to use South Africa as one of three countries to launch its own-name brand of low-cost mobile handsets, aimed at ensuring easier access to telephony for millions of people in developing countries.

China’s ZTE Corporation is manufacturing the Vodafone 125 and the Vodafone 225, following an agreement between the two companies in late 2006, based on features, design and functionality specified by Vodafone.

The two models of phones will be available in South Africa through Vodafone’s local concern, Vodacom, “in the next few weeks”, Vodafone said in a statement this week.

According to Vodafone, mobile technology is the only cost-effective form [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
The Voice (Francistown)

22 May 2007
Posted to the web 22 May 2007

Chedza Simon

Botswana Telecommunications Authority (BTA) may find its decision conflicting customer interest after it allocated Orange Botswana and Mascom Wireless numbers all start with the 74 number.

Mascom started using these numbers last year while Orange Botswana is expected to start using them beginning 1st of June 2007.

An Orange subscriber Florence Nanguba, who is also an airtime vendor said she finds it difficult to differentiate which number belongs to Mascom and which one is Orange. “These numbers should be in such a way that it is easy to differentiate which one is Mascom and Orange when you receive a call. Calling Mascom and Orange numbers may not be the same in monetary value. Customers have been used to clear distinction that the Mascom number starts with 71 and that of Orange starts with 72. It may result in problems of identification,” she said.

Aaron Nyelesi, the Public Relations Manager at Botswana Telecommunications Authority said they allocated Orange Botswana about 200 000 additional numbers ranging from 7430 0000 to 7449 999. “Mascom has been allocated numbers ranging from 7410 0000 to 7429 999. That is the difference.”

He said although the initial number allocation was such that Mascom was assigned the 71… and Orange the 72…, it was never the intention of BTA to differentiate mobile service providers through number allocation. “It should be understood that numbers are a finit resource and that they should be used prudently. Previously each of the mobile operators was allocated 1 million numbers in 71 and 72 range. Such allocation can [continue reading]