Archive for June 12th, 2007

source: allAfrica
SW Radio Africa (London)

12 June 2007
Posted to the web 12 June 2007

Tererai Karimakwenda

More information has become available about the Indigenous Empowerment Bill the government is drafting, in its efforts to target all privately owned companies in Zimbabwe. And it appears the government is after much more than first expected. The Bill is reported to be in its final drafting stages by the Attorney General’s office and will be completed in the next two weeks for presentation to parliament by early July.

Essentially the Bill will require all foreign companies to sell 50% of their shares to locally owned firms or risk losing their license and registration. The companies must also ensure that half of their business is done with local companies and in return they will be given tax breaks and other economic incentives. The government itself will be required to procure 75% of its goods and services from locally owned companies and to deal only with indigenous banks and accounting firms.

Tendai Biti, secretary general of the Tsvangirai MDC, dismissed the Bill as a ZANU-PF ploy to acquire and vandalise private firms the way the party took over and destroyed agriculture. He said: “We have a corrupt regime being run by an 83-year old geriatric so simply changing the structure of those companies will make no difference.” Biti explained that black Empowerment in itself is not a bad policy but in this case it is ZANU-PF empowerment. He said: “You will find the same thieves living on those farms will be the same beneficiaries of this Bill.”

Biti added: “Black Empowerment is being done in South Africa, but differently. You will find they enacted the legislation within 10 years after independence. Ask ZANU-PF where were you for the last 27 years?” Biti believes investors will simply run away when this Bill goes through.

The government has been criticized for [continue reading]

source: BOPA
11 June, 2007

GHANZI – Palapye Land Tribunal President has advised the Ghanzi Land Board to employ a full time in-house attorney who would be able to advise it on legal matters.

Speaking during a visit to Ghanzi Land Board last week, Mr Phetsolo Nare said the move could drastically reduce the number of appeals brought about by aggrieved members of the public to land tribunal.

If resources permit you can hire a full time attorney to guide the board on legal matters, he advised.

Mr Nare said the initiative would be worthy as the board would be adequately advised on points of law on time. Land boards should make it a practice to give reasons for rejecting applications to avoid unnecessary appeals by aggrieved parties.

This would on the other hand assist reduce number of otherwise preventable cases to the tribunal, he said.

The practice would also help trim down the bag-log of appeals. The board was also reminded to stick to the set principles when issuing land as deviation from such could raise the public suspicion on land board operations.

Mr Nare told the Ghanzi Land Board that [continue reading]

source: BOPA
11 June, 2007

GABORONE – The Institute of Development Management (IDM) will during the course of the year start admitting government-sponsored participants at the institution.

The Institutions Country Business Manager Mrs Faith Tombale said because IDM now provide courses that are internationally recognised, it therefore offers good opportunities for those who would like to further studies to enroll at IDM.

Mrs Tombale was speaking at a ceremony to award to its former student Mr Simon Mutiwasekwa the International Regional High Achiever award for being the best student in the National Computer Centre (NCC). We realised for one that we had capacity to deliver NCC Education programmes and felt in our own small way we could contribute to the reduction of government spending on the education of our school leavers at institutions outside this country, she added.

Mr Mutiwasekwa has been given this award as an African Region High Achiever for the December 2006 Examination for International Diploma in Computer Studies (IDCS) programme.

Mrs Tombale said Mr Mutiwasekwa was receiving the award when IDM was now accredited. IDM was accredited in 2001 after an inspection by the NCC.

She said this inspection did not come as an accident but was driven by commitment to our value of social responsiveness.

She said the NCC programme was international recognised, practical and [continue reading]

source: IOL
June 12 2007 at 04:23AM

By Bonile Ngqiyaza and Sapa

Some striking hospital workers received dismissal notices as the government and public service unions returned to the bargaining chamber to consider a compromise mooted by mediators.

And in a development on Monday, the representative body for all municipalities, the SA Local Government Association, approached the Labour Court to prevent the SA Municipal Workers’ Union from going on strike in sympathy with the public servants.

One union, the Suid-Afrikaanse Onderwysers Unie (SAOU), said on Monday that facilitators Charles Nupen and Meshack Ravuku’s proposal included a general salary adjustment of 7,25 percent, with effect from July 1, and an annual salary adjustment on July 1 based on the projected CPIX for the period April 1 2008 to March 31 2009, plus one percent.

It also included an occupation-specific dispensation for education for [continue reading]

source: Topix


The Associated Press

June 09, 2007

Zimbabwe’s government has proposed constitutional amendments on electoral policy and the creation of a human rights commission, steps critics say are designed to mask abuses and strengthen President Robert Mugabe’s hold on power.

The proposed rights commission would have 16 members drawn from names compiled by Mugabe and the ruling party-dominated parliament, according to an official notice available on Saturday.

Human rights groups and Mugabe critics have called the proposed commission a likely smoke screen for his democratic and human rights abuses. However the government says it was designed following U.N. recommendations.

Mugabe’s government has been clamping down on the opposition, fearing a worsening economic crisis could spark an uprising. Annual inflation is running at 3,714 percent _ the highest in the world _ and there are acute shortages of hard currency, gasoline, food and most other basic goods.

The amendments bill also has provisions for holding parliamentary and presidential elections at the same time in March, and for increasing the number of seats in the House of Assembly from 150 to 210 and in the Senate from 66 to 84.

To hold the elections simultaneously, the bill proposes shortening the terms of the president and parliament from six years to five.

Mugabe has said holding legislative and [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)

8 June 2007
Posted to the web 11 June 2007

Ryder Gabathuse

Production at the Orapa and Letlhakane mines has normalised after experiencing difficulties that lasted for some months due to international shortage of tyres for big trucks at the mines.

The Acting General Manager for the Letlhakane and Orapa mines, Dan Mahupela said yesterday that the tyre shortage has cost the mines 5.5 million tonnes loss of production. “But with the acquisition of the new tyres and trucks, production is looking good again, as the mines continue to mine in compliance with its strategic mine to plan index,” reads a statement from the mine

Mahupela said that the mines have gone all out to ensure that they acquire the tyres despite a widespread international shortage, which is due to a busy mining activity.

“The mines are now on target to make for lost tonnages.

All the nine trucks that have been parked due to this crisis are now fully operational, while an additional four new trucks have been acquired to increase hauling capacity and offset the effect suffered in the last five months,” said Mahupela.

With two additional trucks expected from the sister Jwaneng mine, Mahupela was upbeat that this will further speed up production. ” At least there are positive signs that we are heading in the right direction already. Orapa mine is 15 percent above production budget for the month.”

The mines are now supplied by tyres mainly from China, which are strengthened with nylon instead of the more durable ones of radial type, which are supported with a wire.

It has cost the mines in the region of P30 million to acquire the [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)

11 June 2007
Posted to the web 11 June 2007

Nomsa Ndlovu

A huge pilot project in which the Department of Wildlife and National Parks (DWNP) wants to mitigate conflict between people and elephants is soon to be grounded in the Northwest District.

District Wildlife Coordinator (DMC), Sibangane Mosojane says research shows that growing a special type of chilli pepper, suitable for making Tabasco chilli sauce, as a buffer along the fence of a field has proven to be an effective method in repelling elephants from raiding crops.

The hot taste of the chilli pepper fruits irritates the jumbos whereas its smell, raw, crushed or burnt acts as a repellent.

So far Cameroon, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe are leading experts in using the method, Mosojane said.

Zambians are now not only growing the chilli pepper as elephant repellent but also as a cash crop whose market they have established with the Tabasco Sauce producing company in America.

“Therefore all our farmers who are going to use the idea are not only going to benefit from the plant’s elephant repelling effects but it will be setting up a business opportunity with huge financial returns,” he said.

Mosojane said that Botswana first introduced the chilli buffer idea to its farmers in 2005. Initially, the DWNP held a workshop in Gumare village where a Zambia, expert was called in to empower farmers on how to implement the method in their fields.

Farmers were given the pepper seeds to start the [continue reading]

source: people’s daily online

Key players of the Kimberley Process — the international scheme to end the trade in conflict diamonds — will meet in Brussels on Tuesday to discuss ways to strengthen the scheme, said the European Commission on Monday.

The commission, the executive body of the European Union (EU), is currently chairing the Kimberley Process.

“Diamonds are no longer a rebel’s best friend. Kimberley has succeeded in making a difference, based on its inclusiveness, transparency and flexibility,” said Benita Ferrero-Waldner, EU commissioner for External Relations and European Neighborhood Policy, in a statement.

“I am thinking particularly about improving the peer-review mechanism and strengthening the cooperation with the international community, in particular with the United Nations, with a focus on conflict prevention and development.”

At the last Kimberley Process meeting in November 2006 in Gaborone, Botswana, members discussed a report reviewing the scheme after three years of operation, and agreed on a number of recommendations to improve its effectiveness, including increased transparency, publications of statistics, and better coordination of technical assistance.

The Brussels meeting will take stock of [continue reading]