Archive for October 13th, 2008

source: Standay Standard
by Sunday Standard Reporter
12.10.2008 1:48:44 P

The government warned this week of prolonged power outages due to the ongoing services but added that it was courting the Chinese to inject money into the stalled Mmamabula project.

Minerals, Energy and Water Resources minister, Ponatshego Kedikilwe, indicated that the country will run short of 80 mws of electricity supply for the months of October and November this year due to a multiple of factors, such as the overhaul of one of the units at Morupule and the ongoing repairs at one of the aged Mozambique power stations.
“Due to the constraints outlined, the total supply available stands at 452 MW compared to the total demand of some 500 MW during the period of high demands,” he said.

The Morupule power station supplies the country with 120 MW while running at full capacity and the Mozambique supply is at 85 MW at full capacity. The two months’ power shortage is expected to have minimal impact on the key pillars of the economy—especially mining.

However, he stated that government is [continue reading]

source: BOPA
10 October, 2008

GABORONE – Government has formed an inter-ministerial committee to oversee the finalisation and implementation of a National Strategic Framework for combating alcohol abuse.

According to a news release from Botswana Government Communication Information Systems (BGCIS), this is in line with government’s decision to adopt a holistic approach to the challenge of substance abuse in Botswana.

In an addition, it says the decision is consistent with World Health Organisation guidelines and international best practice.

The release says ministries and independent departments directly engaged in the effort include the Ministry of Trade and Industry, which is coordinating the effort, the Ministry of Education and Skills Development, the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Communications, Science and Technology, Ministry of Youth Sports and Culture, Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs, NACA, the Police Service and BGCIS.

It says in moving forward, the committee will also be [continue reading]

source: Standay Standard
by SUNDAY STANDARD REPORTER
12.10.2008 1:23:41 P

Confidential notes between the former Bank of Botswana Chief Internal Auditor (Joe Mutwale) and the Bank’s Audit Committee Chairman (Gordon Cunliffe) paints a picture of how the management of the Central Bank deliberately falsified figures that formed part of answers presented to parliament by the Minister of Finance and Development Planning.

A Member of Parliament had asked a set of pointed questions on the lifestyle of Ms Linah Mohohlo who is the Governor of the Bank of Botswana.
In his correspondence, which Sunday Standard is in possession of, the former Chief Internal Auditor says, by falsifying the figures, Management of the Central Bank had effectively committed fraud for which they should be held accountable.
More importantly, he warns that the integrity of the Bank of Botswana is on line should the public get to know about the actions of the Bank’s Management.

Outlining how false figures eventually reached parliament, Mutwale said, “On March 15th, 2007, the Governor asked me to [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
BRIAN BENZA
Staff Writer

Botswana’s economic competitiveness has improved on the back of strong macro-economic stability, good quality institutions and infrastructure as well as financial market sophistication, a report released Wednesday by the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Geneva, Switzerland reveals.

According to the report, which uses the Global Competitiveness Index (GCI) as its barometer for the rankings, Botswana has gone up 20 places to position 56 from a list of 134 countries.

Delivering the keynote address at the launch of the report at the Gaborone International Convention Centre (GICC) on Wednesday, the CEO of the Citizen Empowerment Development Agency (CEDA) Dr Thapelo Matsheka said although the marked improvement in Botswana’s ranking is a cause for celebration, Botswana still has a long way to go to [continue reading]

source: BOPA
10 October, 2008

GABORONE – The Minister of Communications, Science and Technology, Mrs Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi, says government has created a good environment for Public Private Partnership (PPP) in order to address rural connectivity to communications infrastructure.

Addressing the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation’s ICT summit in Abuja, Nigeria, recently, Mrs Venson-Moitoi gave the example of the Nteletsa II project, which has been concluded with some public and private telecommunications operators.

Mrs Venson-Moitoi said her ministry was working on Internet connectivity to all government-owned junior secondary schools.

She added that Kitsong Centres, which were owned and run by communities, had been established in 45 centres countrywide. She noted that the e-government project was to be fast-tracked, adding that the government had also embarked on a strategic link with the [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
EPHRAIM KEORENG
Staff Writer

The Director of Information Services (IS) Kebareng Solomon, Mmegi is reliably informed, was summoned to the Office of the President (OP) to explain why yesterday’s Daily News had no story on alcohol.

The newspaper only had an advert titled Alcohol abuse wrecks lives on the back page. On the page, a man is asleep and has by his side a bottle of alcohol. The advert says that alcoholism is the cause of moral decay, domestic violence, rape, road carnage and impoverishment of households.

Efforts to reach Solomon were futile as her mobile went unanswered.
But sources in government media circles claim that a committee chaired by a high-ranking official in the Broadcasting Services Department has been created. The committee, made of state electronic and print media personnel, is said to be up and running. Meetings have been held and strategies drafted on how the state media machinery would be used to beef up government’s war on alcohol. After reading yesterday’s Mmegi, some employees of the state media called to complain about this latest development.

“Radio (RB and RB2) and television (Btv) journalists were called to [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
STAFF WRITER

Militarisation of the civil service is continuing and the latest casualty is the department of prisons and rehabilitation.

After months of denial that the Office of the President wants a soldier to take over, the Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs announced in a press release yesterday the appointment of Colonel Silas Motlalekgosi as commissioner of Prisons and Rehabilitation effective October 6, 2008.

The appointment comes amid thick speculation that Herman Kau was being pushed out to pave way for a loyal soldier who will take, without question, all instructions from the OP.
However public relations officer for Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs Lebogang Bok says, “the appointment follows the retirement [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
The East African (Nairobi)
12 October 2008

Despite signing a power-sharing agreement several weeks ago, President Robert Mugabe and his arch-rival and new Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai have failed to agree on who will control which portfolios in a new Cabinet.

Several meetings between the two men aimed at resolving the issue have broken up without agreement.

At issue are the two lucrative Ministries of Home Affairs and Finance.

With Zanu-PF side having insisted on taking the two critical security ministries of Defence and National Intelligence, the MDC has demanded that the Ministries of Home Affairs and Finance to be given to their side.

The upshot is that a new sense of gloom has set in in Zimbabwe with analysts predicting “cohabitension” in the fragile power-sharing arrangement.

“The fact that they can’t agree in these early stages is a bad sign. This arrangement may collapse when the government starts functioning and taking hard decisions,” said Sydney Msamvu, an [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
BAME PIET
Staff Writer

Botswana has not signed a treaty on its borders with Zimbabwe and Namibia and some white farmers who live along the country’s boundary lines are taking advantage of the situation, it has been revealed.

A senior government official revealed at the National Security Strategy Review that ended yesterday that the problem is serious where Botswana does not have a border fence.

He told Mmegi after the seminar that there is no treaty over the 850km of boundary line between Botswana and Zimbabwe, which is also not fenced. The official added that the problem is serious at the Kazungula/Zambezi River where there is confusion over where the two countries share the border.

“For 100 years we have known that the Kazungula River is the centre of Botswana/Zambia border, but recently Zimbabwe claimed ownership of the border line. It is the spot where the ferry [continue reading]

source: SouthAfrica.info

The leader of information and communication technology (ICT) development in Africa, South Africa is the 20th largest consumer of IT products and services in the world.

As an increasingly important contributor to South Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP), the country’s ICT and electronics sector is both sophisticated and developing.

South Africa’s IT industry is characterised by technology leadership, particularly in the field of electronic banking services. South African companies are world leaders in pre-payment, revenue management and fraud prevention systems, and in the manufacture of set-top boxes, all exported successfully to the rest of the world.

Several international corporates, recognised as leaders in the IT sector, operate subsidiaries from South Africa, including IBM, Unisys, Microsoft, Intel, Systems Application Protocol (SAP), Dell, Novell and Compaq.

Electronics industry revenues in South Africa are growing at [continue reading]

source: IOL
October 12 2008 at 01:10PM

New South African President Kgalema Motlanthe has appointed World Cup local organising committee replacements for ministers who resigned in the recent government reshuffling, the City Press reported on Sunday.

The new government representatives on the LOC board are Provincial Affairs Minister Sicelo Shiceka, Safety and Security Minister Susan Shabangu, Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Sue van der Merwe and the finance ministry’s director-general Lesetja Kganyago.

Former health minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang who replaced Essop Pahad as Minister in the Presidency was left out of the new appointments.

Sicheka replaces Sydney Mufamadi, while Van der Merwe takes over Pahad’s position in the board. Shabangu takes over from Charles Nqakula and Kganyago replaces Jabu Moleketi.

Asked about Tshabalala-Msimang’s absence, Sports Minister Makhenkesi Stofile told [continue reading]

source: Standay Standard
by Sunday Standard Reporter
12.10.2008 1:47:47 P

The Geneva-based World Economic Forum (WEF) said Wednesday that Botswana has fallen far short of achieving its 2003 ranking in terms of competitiveness, according to the annual report the Global Competitiveness report.

Although the country moved 20 points up to number 55 against last year’s number 76, it is was still far from the score of number 36 that it reached five years ago.

The report said Batswana still has poor work ethic, inefficiency in government institutions, poor education standards and people still lack access to finance, which makes it difficult for its citizens to compete in the cut-throat global economy.
Some of the key problems were related to labour issues where Botswana scored very poorly saying that it is difficult and costly in the country to fire an incompetent employee.

The report’s findings attracted a [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
BRIAN BENZA
Staff Writer

Political influence is one of a number of factors that have led to Botswana having a poor work ethic, a senior government official has said.

Speaking at the launch the Global Competitiveness Index report in Gaborone on Wednesday, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Trade and Industry Banny Molosiwa said politics is among reasons to blame for the carefree attitude amongst the country’s labour force and that non-performers or troublemakers are often let off the hook because of their political leanings.

“It has become very difficult to deal with this problem of poor work ethics among Batswana, which often drags down productivity at the workplace,” Molosiwa said. “I am very sorry to say this, and I know it might get me into trouble, but it is the truth. “It is very rare to try and instil discipline among the workforce without being called to order by high ranked officers on political grounds. Labour issues are politicised to the detriment of [continue reading]