Archive for October 18th, 2008

source: BOPA
17 October, 2008

NATA – One of the oldest community-based projects, Nata Sanctuary, has been ravaged by veld fire. The fire, which was reported to have started on Sunday, came in less than a month after Nata Lodge in the same area was also destroyed by fire.

The veld fire left the sanctuary without ablutions and campsites. It also burnt two vehicles to ashes. An official of the Sowa Fire Department, Mr Baone Moikgofhe, said fire fighters, police officers and few members of the public were dispatched to extinguish the fire.

Mr Moikgofhe said the fire started Sunday morning and by 8 p.m., fire fighting crews were still battling with to extinguish it He said it was disturbing that some members of the public were reluctant to assist in putting out the fire.

“While we were busy putting out the fire some people ignored our efforts and continued with their daily businesses,” he said. Mr Moikgofhe said fire fighters needed the public assistance because it was impossible for their vehicles to access some of the areas. “Besides even if we can have access to the affected areas, it will be very difficult because we do not have enough water.

However, some residents at [continue reading]

source: BOPA
17 October, 2008

GABORONE – A passenger, who consumes alcoholic beverages in a vehicle, is guilty of an offence that attracts a P50 fine.

S/Supt Christopher Ndlovu of the police traffic department said a vehicle was not a designated area for alcohol consumption.

S/Supt Ndlovu said in an interview on Wednesday that it was illegal to have an opened container of alcohol in a vehicle.

He said alcohol should be consumed only in designated areas that include bars, hotels and night clubs, which are licensed under the law to sell and supply alcoholic beverages.

He likened drinking alcoholic beverages in a vehicle to getting drunk in a public area.

He said he believed operation sobriety, a police initiative geared at curbing alcohol-related misdemeanours, would not compromise other duties of the police.

He said resources of the police service were channeled to areas that called for urgent attention despite being thin on the ground. “The society shows that alcohol abuse and drunkenness is now a major concern and we as the police should respond to the needs of the society.” Meanwhile, the [continue reading]

source: afp Google
21 hours ago

HARARE (AFP) — Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai failed Friday to agree on who should control powerful ministries, leaving their proposed unity government in doubt.

After four days of lengthy negotiations, Tsvangirai said he still hoped that diplomatic efforts by fellow African countries would find a way to save the month-old power-sharing deal, seen as the best chance for rescuing the country from economic collapse.

The failure to reach agreement was also a blow to former South African president Thabo Mbeki, who brokered the original pact but whose mediation this week could not bridge differences among the rivals.

Mugabe declined to explain the deadlock in the talks, saying only: “They went in the wrong direction.”

But Tsvangirai said the rivals remained far apart on several issues, most importantly the distribution of powerful cabinet posts in the proposed unity government.

“Regrettably, after four days of intense negotiations, we have failed to agree on the… key issue, which is the equitable allocation of ministerial posts and the composition of cabinet,” Tsvangirai told reporters.

“We believe that for an [continue reading]

source: Public Broadcasting
By Nelson Banya

HARARE (Reuters) – Some southern African leaders will meet on Monday to try to help Zimbabwe’s rival parties end a deadlock on forming a new government, opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai said on Friday.

Speaking after four days of inconclusive talks mediated by former South African President Thabo Mbeki, Tsvangirai said his MDC party would not walk away from negotiations despite the difficulties.

The Southern African Development Community’s security defense and political troika — made up of the heads of state of Swaziland, Mozambique and Angola — will meet in Swaziland on Monday to try to find a way of overcoming the stalemate.

“We call upon the SADC and the AU (African Union) to use their collective wisdom to help unlock the deadlock,” Tsvangirai said.

The power-sharing deal brokered by Mbeki a month ago is seen as [continue reading]

source: BOPA
17 October, 2008

GABORONE – Gaborone City Council has adopted a draft review of the development plan. The draft, Gaborone City Development Plan, was prepared by Mosienyane and Partners and adopted during a special full council meeting on Wednesday.

It has various developmental proposals, which if implemented, would transform Gaborone into a regional centre. Presenting the draft, the director of Mosienyane and Partners, Mr Lekwalo Mosienyane said the purpose of the plan was to give Gaborone dignity befitting a capital city.

He said it would also ensure wise use of land for development projects. He emphasised the need for the development of the Central Business District (CBD) to ensure that [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

A new ‘order’ is transforming monopolies that Canal+, a French operator, and DStv, a subsidiary of Naspers, a South African media giant, enjoyed for years.

This is partly because of Sub-Saharan Africa’s economic growth in the last decade, creating a market niche for other players in pay-televison, thus drastically shifting the Satelite Televison landscape.

Many African countries have a small emerging middle-class eager to spend. GTV’s, a satellite-television company created just over a year ago, July 2007, now the fastest-growing in Africa according to London-based Balancing Act, has signed up more than 100 000 customers in 20 countries.It intends to have its footprint across 48 African countries by the end of 2008. Prior to its establishment, Pay TV penetration was at a mere I%.

With GTV’s investment of over US $200 million to date (making it the biggest investment in African media) the African Satelite landscape will never be the same. It hopes to sign up millions of customers over the [continue reading]

VP calls for supervision

source: BOPA
17 October, 2008

GABORONE – The Vice President, Lt Gen. Mompati Merafhe has urged Ministry of Health’s management to supervise consultants to ensure they deliver in accordance with contracts.

Addressing the management of Central Medical Stores (CMS) after a tour of the premises, Gen. Merafhe said consultants should be supervised to the maximum as there was huge wastage of drugs.

Gen. Merafhe said drugs were essential and without them hospitals and clinics would have no meaning.

He said that consultants should also act as watchdogs of the ministry and ensure that stocks were properly controlled.

he Ministry of Health engaged a short-term management consultancy to assess and develop an emergency plan to alleviate shortages of drugs in the country.

The consultancy started work in [continue reading]

source: BOPA
17 October, 2008

TSHABONG – Some entrepreneurs in the Kgalagadi District have expressed scepticism that increased trading licence fees were likely to deprive Batswana an opportunity to engage in small businesses.

They said during a meeting for the business community, which was addressed by the Assistant Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Duke Lefhoko in Tshabong that the fees’ hike could disadvantage small businesses. For instance, they said one had to part with P250 instead of the previous P15 to have a licence to operate butchery. They also complained about lack of transparency and fairness in the way the Kgalagadi District Council award tenders for the supply of food to orphans and destitute people.

They said in most cases the tenders are won by the same people over the years to the detriment of small businesspeople, who were striving to earn a living.

Assistant Minister Lefhoko explained that research was conducted prior to the introduction of the new charges for trading licences. The survey indicated that the fees were low, adding that the government was [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

SELEBI-PHIKWE: The launch of the Selebi-Phikwe Diversification Unit (SPEDU) has been delayed again, this time because the Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Baledzi Gaolathe, who was billed to perform the official launch, is recuperating from an operation.

Among other key speakers was the Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources, Ponatshego Kedikilwe. The launch, which was scheduled for Saturday, has been postponed to a date yet to be decided.

The Acting Coordinator of SPEDU, Disikalala Gaseitsiwe, says the minister’s taking ill is the reason for the postponement and that he does not know when the minister will be back at work. Gaolathe’s ministry is the main driver of SPEDU.

Gaseitsiwe says he will meet with the minister’s Permanent Secretary, Serwalo Tumelo, in Gaborone next week. In the meantime, preparations for the launch continue and [continue reading]

Cuba bestows medal on VP

source: BOPA
16 October, 2008

GABORONE – Visiting Cuban Deputy Minister of International Cooperation, Mr Ramon Ripoll has bestowed a Medal of Friendship on Vice President Lt Gen. Mompati Merafhe.

Mr Ripoll said the medal was from the Cuban President, Mr Raul Castro and was in honour of General Merafhe, who is former minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

The medal was presented to the vice president at the end of the Botswana/Cuba Joint Permanent Commission for Cooperation meeting on Tuesday. General Merafhe, who chaired some of the Botswana/Cuba Joint Permanent Commission for Cooperation meetings, was [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
18 October 2008
Posted to the web 18 October 2008

The dispute over the allocation of ministries in Zimbabwe’s power-sharing government has been referred to the Southern African Development Community (SADC) after four days of talks in Harare failed to bring about an agreement.

A senior negotiator for President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu-PF party told The Herald newspaper in Harare that the principal disagreement was over which party would control the home affairs ministry, which is responsible for the police.

It has already been agreed that Mugabe will continue to control the armed forces. The Zanu-PF negotiator, Patrick Chinamasa, said the party had agreed to cede the finance ministry to the Movement for Democratic Change.

Although the SADC facilitator, former South African President Thabo Mbeki, denied that the talks had deadlocked, Agence-France Presse reported Prime Minister-designate Morgan Tsvangirai as saying a deadlock had been declared.

“Regrettably, after four days of intense negotiations, we have failed to agree on the… key issue, which is the equitable allocation of ministerial posts and the [continue reading]