Archive for October 9th, 2008

source: Mmegi
Staff Writer

Botswana does not own most of the land along its borders with Zimbabwe, South Africa, and Namibia, it emerged yesterday at the ongoing three-day National Security Strategy Review seminar in Gaborone.

Highly placed government officials revealed that this makes it difficult for security forces and government agencies like the immigration department to access the farms mainly owned by white Batswana of South African origin.

The farms are fenced along the borderline and this, they said, poses a security threat to the country.

The objectives of the seminar is to widen security sector reform literacy in readiness for cross government implementation of a new national strategy; to communicate the national security strategy review concept to wider critical civil society and NGO stakeholders in a way that fosters common understanding.

The other objectives are to [continue reading]

source: IOL

The health department has ordered port and municipal health officials countrywide to detain imported Chinese food products that may contain milk or other dairy ingredients, and for samples to be submitted for melamine testing at forensic laboratories.

On Wednesday, Tanya Blignaut, acting managing director of the Dairy Standards Agency – which is mandated to improve the quality of milk and other dairy products – said the department’s food control directorate had also ordered municipal health inspectors to monitor all baby formula on sale in South Africa.

Blignaut said the department had issued the instruction as a precautionary measure in the light of possible melamine contamination.

This follows the international melamine contaminated baby formula scandal. Consumer Goods Council acting chief executive officer Michael Broughton said [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

Never before, has Botswana been ravaged by unrelenting wild fires that have left protected areas such as the Central Kgalagadi Game Reserve (CKGR), Chobe National Park, Moremi Game Reserve and Tsodilo Hills utterly desolate.

With about 60 percent of the country’s protected and heritage sites wiped out, the tourism industry is bound to be in the doldrums.

It goes without saying that there could have been some cancellations of bookings to the affected tourist destinations, especially in the acclaimed Chobe National Park and Moremi Game Reserve. Although the cost of destruction has not been determined, there is a fear that it could run into millions of Pula as it involves loss of property and wildlife with a rippling effect on the eco-system of Africa’s only surviving wilderness.

Concern has been expressed about measures to be taken to manage, rather than fighting, the fires. While we appreciate the [continue reading]

source: IOL
October 09 2008 at 07:18AM

By Gaye Davis, Moshoeshoe Monare and Xolani Mbanjwa

While ANC leaders want to reconcile with the dissidents in their ranks, ruling party president Jacob Zuma has warned that the peace efforts won’t be a “blank cheque” for rebellion.

The latest power battle was triggered by the painful succession struggle which has battered the organisation for seven years, but precipitated by the firing of Thabo Mbeki as president three weeks ago.

Former defence minister Mosiuoa Lekota on Wednesday gave the ANC an ultimatum to get back on track or face a possible breakaway party that will take it on at the polls.

“It seems we are serving today divorce papers,” Lekota told reporters in Johannesburg.

ANC treasurer-general Mathews Phosa said the marriage had not irretrievably broken down, and that he was meeting Lekota on Wednesday to discuss the rift.

But Zuma cautioned that any such meeting would not be unconditional, and that there was a limit to what [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

The Ministry of Health has advised all health facilities – public, mission and private, to follow up all patients who have been referred to Gauteng province in South Africa for medical attention since September 12.

This advice comes in the wake of reports that an unknown highly infectious disease has been identified in South Africa. In a press release the ministry also implores people who sought medical attention in that country’s province’s health facilities since the same date (September 12th) to report to the nearest health facility here in Botswana.

In a press release yesterday permanent secretary Newman Kahiya advised health facilities and members of the public to “postpone seeking all non-emergency medical attention in Gauteng province until further notice”.

Three cases of this disease have been reported and all the three patients have died.

Kahiya notes that the first patient was [continue reading]

source: SW Radio Africa
By Violet Gonda
8 October 2008

Negotiators were back to the drawing board Wednesday to try and thrash out agreements over the allocation of cabinet posts. But, as has become the norm, they resolved nothing. MDC spokesperson Nelson Chamisa said ZANU PF is still resisting the issue of sharing the ministries and governors.

Chamisa said: “If we were centimeters apart we are now meters apart. The zone of difference seems to be growing by the day. In fact ZANU PF’s perspective is quite different from us. We are worlds apart. We don’t think that they are genuine in this deal and not interested and they want to play games with the people of Zimbabwe.”

Chamisa said the MDC is referring the matter to SADC and the African Union. But many analysts believe the only way forward is for the MDC to pull out of the controversial and dishonest talks with ZANU PF.

With Zimbabweans desperate for a solution many questions are beginning to be raised as to why the MDC continues to wait for ZANU PF, and does not flex their muscles.

On Wednesday MDC President Morgan Tsvangirai had called for a press briefing on [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

Diamond mining and exploration company, Firestone, is accelerating a development decision on the new BK11 diamond mine near Orapa, the chief executive officer, Philip Kenny said on Monday.

Kenny told MiningWeekly online that the BK11 mine might be advanced to the first quarter of next year and production to 2010.Drilling and bulk sampling at BK11 is ahead of schedule, with results now expected before year-end.

The Aim-quoted Firestone built a new diamond recovery facility in Gaborone this year and plans to start drilling and bulk sampling at BK16 this month.

The company found its first macro-diamonds at Tsabong, where bulk sample plant modifications were completed on schedule in August 2008, while work is continuing on another 79 kimberlites.

“We continue to be excited about BK11, where we believe we are close to confirming its economic potential. Our primary focus in [continue reading]

source: BOPA
07 October, 2008

GABORONE – The youth of Botswana have been encouraged to have an enterprising mindset in order to make their educational skills work for them in the workplace.

Various speakers at the Botswana International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) Career Fair 2008 held at the Gaborone International Convention Centre hammered home this message.

According to Mr Alan Boshwaen, the head of IFSC, the fair is meant to help provide a linkage between tertiary education and the workplace environment.

“This is entirely a private sector led initiative, which is complementing the Government’s own internship initiative that is championed by the President.

This is due to the need to create an environment where learners can acquire practical work skills.

We need to equip ourselves with the necessary skills to encourage innovation,” Mr Boshwaen said.

The keynote speaker, Mr Percy Raditladi, recounted his [continue reading]

source: News24
08/10/2008 09:21 – (SA)

Johannesburg – South Africa is too soft on crime, said African National Congress president Jacob Zuma in Sandton on Tuesday. “[We] consider criminals in a democratic way and our laws at times are user friendly,” said Zuma at a briefing with black business representatives.

Zuma said even if someone killed a person in front of numerous witnesses; “according to the law and technicality we are going to say he is a suspect. We are too soft. Too nice.”

He said policemen and women, by law, have to tell someone they were going to arrest that they were being arrested, did not have to answer any questions and could call a lawyer. “I think that is a democratisation of criminality,” he said.

He said the way rights had been interpreted in SA might also contribute to this.

“[According to the law] my rights should be equal to the criminal’s.”

Zuma said even the name of the safety and security department reflected SA’s softness. “It’s safety and security. That’s very democratic. [It’s] not law and order. It doesn’t suggest we are dealing with crime really. You want to maintain order and adherence to law but instead it is [continue reading]

source: SW Radio Africa
By Lance Guma
07 October 2008

With the deadlock over the cabinet continuing Tuesday, the country descended deeper into economic meltdown. Banks ran out of cash with thousands of people milling outside for money, some companies shut down over the cancellation of electronic bank transfers and the University of Zimbabwe announced it was suspending indefinitely its scheduled opening, owing to a lecturers strike for better pay. And there’s also a virtual news blackout. People desperate for news and information have to negotiate the high cost of newspapers and the chronic power cuts restrict them to occasional bulletins on radio or TV.

UZ students who went to campus on Monday found notices telling them the university would be closed indefinitely. Vice Chancellor Levy Nyagura said the decision was reached after a meeting of the UZ council. At the centre of the problems for the institution is a strike by lecturers who are demanding better pay and working conditions. The state of facilities at the UZ is also said to be ‘deplorable’ with toilets not working, among other things. A former student told Newsreel that half the toilets at the UZ were not working 7 years ago and ‘one can only imagine what the general state of decline is right now.’ Under council health and safety by-laws the college would never pass any [continue reading]