Archive for June 13th, 2007

source: Reuters AlertNet
13 Jun 2007 09:35:24 GMT
Source: Reuters

By Alister Doyle

THE HAGUE, June 13 (Reuters) – African ministers at a U.N. wildlife conference tried to break a deadlock on Wednesday over elephant ivory in a dispute between countries seeking to extend a 1989 export ban and others wanting trade.

Talks late on Tuesday collapsed over a draft compromise to allow new one-off sales of 140 tonnes of ivory by four southern African nations, where elephant numbers are rising, and then no more in the next 9 years.

Some ministers at the 171-nation talks by the U.N. Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) argue more sales would spur illegal killings that could further endanger elephants. Others say tightly limited trade can help by ploughing cash into conservation and into building schools or hospitals.

“We don’t know how it will finish. They’ve all given some ground,” one delegate said of the meeting of African ministers.

Kenya and Mali came to the June 3-15 meeting demanding a 20-year extension of a ban on all ivory exports from Africa, saying that poaching was killing 19,000 elephants a year on the continent.

Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe and South Africa argue their elephant populations are on the rise and want to allow regular trade to benefit remote communities where elephants increasingly come into conflict with farmers.

Southern African nations say they get ivory from animals who die from natural causes, from seizures from poachers and from licensed killings of “problem elephants”.

Kenya’s delegation, led by Tourism and Wildlife Minister Morris Dzoro, rejected the draft deal overnight arguing that it [continue reading]

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source: BOPA
12 June, 2007

LOBATSE – Minister of Lands and Housing, Mr Ramadeluka Seretse, was against the idea of politicians becoming landboard members.

He said a person holding any political office was barred from standing for landboard elections.

Mr Seretse was responding to a suggestion from one of the residents of Good Hope during a kgotla meeting he addressed in that village and Phitshane/Molopo.

However, the minister explained, that people who lost in the primary elections of their respective political parties could stand for landboard elections as they were not holding any political office.

Residents had suggested that politicians be allowed to stand for landboard elections. The MP for the Barolong constituency, Mr Kitso Mokaila, who is also minister of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism, accompanied Mr Seretse.

Responding to the request for the review of the minimum age required for one to qualify to stand for landboard membership, Mr Seretse said if that was a general feeling that the minimum age be reduced from 26 to 21 years that could be considered.

He, however, said consultations with Batswana on the issue should be carried out. The minister further explained that the waiting list for commercial plots was abolished after it was found that it delayed developments.

He said some people applied for plots although they did not have the capability to develop them.

Mr Seretse said plots were now advertised and awarded on [continue reading]

source: SouthAfricaInfo
12 June 2007

South African company Primedia Limited, with the full backing of the police, has launched a groundbreaking anti-crime initiative that allows members of the public to make anonymous SMS tip-offs on suspected crimes at any time of the day.

Information received will be passed on to the police, who have undertaken to act promptly on the information and give regular public feedback on the progress of the initiative.

SMS’s to the number – 32211 – will cost R1 each, and can be sent 24 hours a day.

* Tip-offs can also be sent electronically via the Crime Line website

The number is not a crime emergency line, and people who witness a crime or are a victim of a crime should still call 10111 or their nearest police station.

The data centre has been set up to protect the privacy of those who forward information, allowing South Africans to contribute towards the fight against crime in the country without fear of being questioned by law enforcement authorities or of alerting those they report against.

“Our data capturers have received extensive training from the South African Police Service,” Primedia Broadcasting’s head of news and talk [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Business Day (Johannesburg)

12 June 2007
Posted to the web 12 June 2007

Mariam Isa
Johannesburg

AFRICAN economic growth would accelerate to 5.9% this year, with oil exporting countries outperforming oil importers, which would face rising inflation from the high cost of fuel, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) said in its 2007 African outlook yesterday.

The 30-member group of industrial countries warned that Africa as a whole was unlikely to meet Millennium Development Goals on improving access to water and sanitation in poor countries by 2015.

SA would expand at a brisk rate of 4,5% this year and next but the country’s outlook could be clouded by international risks, including rising US interest rates, higher oil prices and a downturn in commodity prices. The report cited uncertainty over the choice of successor to President Thabo Mbeki as a negative factor for SA’s economy.

“In 2007 the average real gross domestic product (GDP) for the continent is expected to be 5,9%, with the difference between the two groups of countries (oil exporters and importers) even more marked at 7,4% and 4,7% respectively,” the OECD said. Last year Africa grew 5,5%, well above the long-term trend, for the fourth straight year.

“Oil importing countries will need to contain inflationary pressures now running into double digits as a result of oil price increases, and to finance or to contain increases in their current account deficits,” the OECD said.

High energy prices had pushed Africa’s inflation rate up to 9,1% overall last year, with oil importers faced with a rate of 12%, which was set to edge up to 12,9% by 2009.

Progress towards the [continue reading]

source: SouthAfricaInfo
12 June 2007

The South African government has launched a new website to provide information on the country’s preparations for the 2010 Fifa World Cup.

The Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) said the website  – www.sa2010.gov.za – provided information about the country and the continent in the context of the first African World Cup.

The site focuses in particular on providing comprehensive information on government 2010-related programmes, including those related to economic opportunities.

It also acts as an entry point to other sources of information on the country – such as the South African Tourism and International Marketing Council portals, and provincial and host city websites.

The site is complementary to the website of FIFA and the Local Organising Committee, and was designed in [continue reading]

source: BOPA
12 June, 2007

GABORONE – Odirile Vee Sento has grabbed the attention of UK based Afro Sound Promotions who are said to be interested in his music.

In an interview Black Money Makers stable manager Gilbert PP Seagile said Vee is set to play in the UK on June 21- 23.

He is scheduled to perform in three different towns alongside South African Afro-pop outfit Mafikizolo.

Afro Sound promotions he said got interested in Vee’s music after listening to his tunes at an African club which plays music from Africa.

He said demand has been growing, internationally, for Vees new album Kasiology.We have been selling a lot of music to UK residents on line. I think that has also contributed to the demand,Gilbert said.

Concerning media reports that Vee failed to move the UK crowds in the past, Gilbert said people should not believe everything they read.

He said some artistes peddle lies to the media to destroy the competition. Why would he be invited again if he did not make it happen? Vee is set for greater heights and the international community is recognizing his talent, Gilbert said.

He said local musicians should follow in the trendsetters footsteps. BOPA 

source: BOPA
12 June, 2007

GABORONE – Botswana National Productivity Centre (BNPC) will host a Commonwealth Secretariat Regional Workshop on Performance Management System (PMS) in the public sector on June 18-22.
Briefing the media BNPC official Mr Kgosinkwe Moesi said the workshop was aimed at implementing public sector reforms to improve efficiency, effectiveness, responsiveness and accountability of public services.

Mr Moesi said most Commonwealth countries in Africa were implementing public sector reforms aimed at transforming African public services.

In spite of many difficulties encountered by many countries in the process, he said Botswana had long started to implement them, adding that most countries would have to learn from Botswana as it had some tangible results.

However, he said even though Botswana had some tangible results, it still had a long way to go to match international standards.

Mr Moesi explained that public service reforms encompassed a wide range of activities including PMS which had been recognised as a high priority component of such reforms aimed at transforming the public service in Africa.

PMS, he said, provides a framework, which empowers organisations to holistically plan, manage and deliver results efficiently and effectively to citizens as required by their mandates.

Mr Moesi also informed the media that a third forum of heads of African public service held in Abuja, Nigeria last year recognised the significant of performance management systems in the transformation of the African public service.

He said usually African countries are bundled together when [continue reading]