Archive for May 30th, 2007
30 May, 2007
GABORONE – The newly established corruption prevention committees in the Department of Road Transport and Safety has been urged to work hard to combat corrupt practices.
The Deputy Director of the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime, Ms Rose Tsiane, said the committes would go a long way as the Ministry of Works and Transport was rated number three with 7.13 per cent in terms of the number of investigations opened within the ministry.
Ms Tsiane was speaking during a training workshop organised by the DCEC for the newly established corruption prevention committees of the Department of Road Transport and Safety Being the first corruption prevention committees to be established means that you have a big challenge because the decision as to whether we should roll out the committees to other ministries will depend entirely on how well they are doing, she said.
She said even though Botswana has been rated as one of the least corrupt countries in Africa that does not mean there is no corruption in the country.
One of the responsibilities of the corruption prevention division of the DCEC was to look at the systems and [continue reading]
May 30 2007 at 02:39PM
Members of the Communication Workers’ Union (CWU) at Vodacom have vowed to continue with the planned industrial action, the union said on Wednesday.
“Following the Labour Court’s lifting of the strike interdict against workers, the union has resolved to continue with the industrial action,” it said in a statement.
CWU’s interim Vodacom national committee debated the lifting of the strike interdict – an attempt by the Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) to bring parties together – and the report from forensic audit team that was determining membership level of CWU at Vodacom.
“We then resolved to notify the company and all municipalities that would be affected by the strike about our plan of action.
“The union would also like to thank the CCMA for the interest it showed, however [continue reading]
29 May, 2007
GABORONE – Discussions with SA Airlink regarding the privatisation of Air Botswana are at an advanced stage and it is hoped a final proposal will be presented to government before the end of June.
Only then would it (government) be in a position to review the proposal as a whole to see whether it is the best alternative to ensure the long term sustainability, safety and reliability of air services in Botswana, says a statement from the Ministry of Works and Transport.
The statement says in the recent meeting of Air Botswana staff and works minister, Ms Lesego Motsumi, she indicated that negotiations on any severance packages for employees would not take place until government has taken a final decision on the proposal to form a new company with SA Airlink and close down Air Botswana.
If the government decides that the proposed deal is in the interests of Botswana to ensure continuity of safe and reliable air services, and it will require Air Botswana to close, then negotiations on exit packages with staff will take place, the statement says. BOPA
29 May, 2007
GABORONE – At the close of business on Friday, First National Bank Botswana (FNBB) shares were trading at 3600t or 11 per cent above their opening price on Monday.
The price jump according to a weekly report from Capital Securities is driven by increased demand following the recent announcement of a share split by the bank.
In our opinion we are likely to see further upward movement of the share price in the next few weeks.
We expect that the share price will rise even further post the share split. Our recommendation on FNBB has been revised to HOLD, says Capital Securities.
The report says the stock is currently trading on a price earning ration of 48, the highest amongst all the banks and this is likely to increase after the share split.
A total of 9135 shares were traded on Letshego and Standard Chartered Bank. The report says Barclays Bank was the most active stock in the sector with over 385 000 shares trading at an unchanged price of 900t.
In the resource sector trading in the past week pushed most resource stocks to close the week higher than their opening prices on Monday.
Discovery Metals traded up 6 per cent on 72,124 shares, says the report. Other stocks that traded up in the past week were African Diamonds and A-Cap Resources with 4 per cent each and DiamonEx with 2 per cent. CIC Energy lost 4 per cent to close at 7690t.
The report says LionOre share price jumped 23 per cent this past week after Norilsk Nickel announced a revised all cash offer to acquire the issued and outstanding common shares of LionOre.
It says the revised offer of about P149 per share has been described by the management of LionOre as a superior proposal. Norilsk Nickel had previously offered P114 per share.
The report says the offer by [continue reading]
The Voice (Francistown)
29 May 2007
Posted to the web 29 May 2007
Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) will on the 21st of next month launch an Investment Forum at Gaborone International Convention Center (GICC). The forum that used to be the Financial Trade Fair was re-branded the Investment Forum after feedback from previous fairs. It is intended to target both the audience of individuals and listed companies to interact face to face. The theme of the forum is “learning how ordinary investments can turn into extraordinary returns.”
Speaking at a media briefing this Wednesday, Chief Executive Officer of BSE, Hiran Mendis, said the forum is meant to focus attention and create awareness amongst participants on the capital market and more specifically the activities of the BSE and its strategy to develop the market. He said in order to reach out and be more informative to the target audience, the forum shall discuss a way forward for the BSE; innovative capital market products; empowering growth by going public and investing shares and securities opportunities and pitfalls.
“Part of our strategies is to convince companies to list on the stock exchange and how they can turn from being private to public companies as well as benefits of listing. Strategies of going forward would include legal issues, infrastructure, product and [continue reading]
Fast moving diamond miner, Gem Diamonds, run by ex-De Beers executives, has purchased Gope Exploration from De Beers and Xstrata which controls “strategically attractive” diamond bearing pipes in Botswana.
Author: Rodrick Mukumbira
Posted: Tuesday , 29 May 2007
To most San Bushmen, southern Africa’s oldest inhabitants, the phrase Gope Exploration Company will remind them of their four-year court battle with the Botswana government for the right to return to the Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR), a place they consider their ancestral home.
The word Gope kept on creeping into the landmark court case that ended on a happy note for the 243 applicants in November last year, as the San Bushmen sought a reversal of their eviction from the game sanctuary – in central Botswana and the biggest in the diamond-rich country -, which they had linked to diamond exploration in a campaign fronted by London-based NGO, Survival International.
Controversial as Gope Exploration is in the eyes of San Bushmen, who have lived in the CKGR for over 20,000 years, the company Tuesday changed hands after Gem Diamonds Limited [LSE: GEMD] paid De Beers Prospecting Pty Ltd and Xstrata PLC US$34 million for a 100 percent stake.
In an announcement to the London Stock Exchange Gem Diamonds said the acquisition will give it an [continue reading]
Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)
28 May 2007
Posted to the web 29 May 2007
Botswana Railways says it is taking longer than expected to restore the day passenger train service because BR cannot find anyone to refurbish its coaches, which are in a state of disrepair.
“The process (to find a suitable company to repair the coaches) has taken longer than we originally anticipated because there are very few companies in the region which undertake such works (sic) and they are faced with a lot of outstanding work orders,” the company said in a written response to Monitor Business.
BR discontinued the day passenger service nearly a year ago, saying at the time that it was a temporary measure.
Asked whether the discontinuation of the service had improved the parastatal’s profit margins, a BR spokeswoman said passenger train services generally operated at a loss worldwide, and that Botswana was not an exception in that regard: “Botswana Railways revenue earned from passenger services has always been below operating costs. For the financial year 2006/2007, the cost of operating passenger trains was 39 million pula, while revenue earned was 9 million Pula,” said Seboifeng Sebego.
“It can therefore be concluded that (the) discontinuation of the day passenger trains has reduced the operating costs that Botswana Railways incurred from passenger services.”
However, the company said the passenger train service was still an important mode of travel for the public.
Asked whether BR had plans to expand the railway line to [continue reading]
AfricaFocus (Washington, DC)
29 May 2007
Posted to the web 29 May 2007
Over 1200 eLearning enthusiasts from 85 countries are attending the annual eLearning Africa conference in Nairobi this week. The countries with the largest participation are the host, Kenya, followed by Nigeria, South Africa, and Uganda.
The event, taking place from May 28 to 30, attracts top policymakers as well as African and international specialists who are actively engaged in a host of innovative initiations to make use of technology for African education at all levels. Last year’s conference, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, attracted 832 participants from 80 countries, 70% of them from Africa.
This AfricaFocus Bulletin contains interviews by the eLearning Africa press team with two participants: Dr. Tunde Adegbola, who is working on applying speech recognition technology to African tone languages such as Yoruba, and Dr. Elijah Omwenga, director of ICT Services at the University of Nairobi, speaking about the African Network of Scientific and Technological Institutions (ANSTI), which groups 99 member institutions.
Additional background information and interviews are available on the eLearning Africa website at:
Interviewees include [continue reading]
May 29 2007 at 06:54PM
The future of South Africa’s suspended national lottery will be known by Thursday, Trade and Industry Minister Mandisi Mpahlwa said on Tuesday.
Speaking in the National Assembly during debate on his budget vote, he said he would make a statement on the matter by the end of the month.
“The work has been going on and I am confident we are going to conclude this process very soon.”
Mpahlwa also gave the assurance that the lotto’s temporary suspension would not affect any charity receiving funds from the lotto distribution board, as the full period during which the lotto was not running would not exceed three months.
On March 5, Pretoria High Court Judge Willie Seriti set aside the awarding of the operating licence to winning bidder Gidani following an application by current lottery operator Uthingo.
Uthingo cited the [continue reading]
29 May, 2007
FRANCISTOWN – The efficient functioning of markets depends on an adequate level of competition between businesses and the ability of the entrepreneurs to read the market and adapt to change.
Speaking at the BOCCIM prize giving ceremony, last week, BTC chief executive officer Mr Vincent Seretse said increased competition tends to stimulate capital investments by firms in plant, equipment, and research and development as they struggle to gain an edge over their rivals.
The long term result may increase productivity growth, product and process innovations and greater economic growth, he said.
Mr Seretse said that competition in domestic markets could be particularly intense in the service industry such as telecommunications, retailing and many financial services where exporting is not an option.
The introduction of competition in this regard was exemplified in Botswana in the telecommunications industry in 1996 when BTA licensed two cellular phone operators Mascom and Vista now called Orange.
This brought interesting shift in the telecommunications industry, which we cherished although it eroded some of our traditional revenue streams such as the provision of voice, he said.
Mr Seretse said competition has serious costs implications to the host country and has been seen to have diverse effects on balance of payments.
Firstly, set against the initial capital inflow that comes with foreign direct investment, must be the [continue reading]
May 29 2007 at 04:51PM
A document containing proposals to resolve the deadlock between government and public sector unions over wage increases was circulated at talks between the parties in Centurion on Tuesday afternoon.
The document compiled by a technical committee, comprising government and union negotiators, who met throughout Monday night was handed to all the representatives the Public Service Co-ordinating Bargaining Council (PSCBC).
The document was not made public and both government and labour negotiators were mum on its contents.
It was understood however, that it [continue reading]