Archive for March 4th, 2009

source: Mmegi
Staff Writer

LOBATSE: The High Court in Lobatse has dismissed the case in which construction company, Stocks and Stocks is fighting over the P429 million tender for the construction of Botswana International University of Science and Technology in Palapye.

Yesterday, Justice Singh Walia ordered each party to bear its own costs for the application. Last week, Stocks and Stocks applied for an interdict against the bid winner, China Civil Engineering, the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Board (PPADB), and the Building and Engineering Services/Ministry of Education after losing the tender.

But Walia said Stocks and Stocks was properly disqualified for non-compliance with the requirements of the invitation to tender as regards registration to the subcontractor and the peremptory provisions of the law.

“I am unable to find that the first respondent (PPADB) decision was [continue reading]

source: BOPA
02 March, 2009

MOGODITSHANE -President Lt Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama has rejected pleas for pardon by Tsolamosese residents on the grounds that it might encourage mushrooming of squatter settlements. Addressing a kgotla at Tolamosese General Khama said: “Kana ga se lona fela lo ipeileng, lo bantsi. “There are just too many squatters in this country, some in Jwaneng, Selebi-Phikwe, Francistown and other areas.So pardoning you will send a wrong message that self allocation of land is acceptable.”He however, did not rule out the possibility of continued negotiation on the issue. “I am going to meet with the ministries of land and housing as well as local government and other relevant stakeholders on the issue.” Though he admitted that the delay from Mogoditshane Sub-land Board in allocating land contributed to mushrooming of squatter settlements around Gaborone, he said that did not justify self allocation of land.

President Khama said the Mogoditshane land fracas had been going on for too long and needed to be brought to a close as soon as possible, adding “even if the solution may mean the return of the yellow monsters, at last, the law must be allowed to take its course”.

Residents of Tsolamosese had earlier on complained to the president that their settlement lacked [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

MOCHUDI: Botswana Congress Party (BCP) president Gilson Saleshando has said that the upcoming 2009 general elections will be a referendum between military dictatorship or democracy.

Saleshando said the election will offer Batswana a chance to decide whether they want President Ian Khama’s military rule or democracy as offered by the BCP. The BCP leader spoke when launching Philip Monowe on Saturday as the parliamentary candidate for Kgatleng West. Saleshando said that Batswana have to make the right choice when they go for this year’s polls. He asserted that the ruling Botswana Democratic Pary (BDP) has lost its potency because a lot had changed ever since Khama took power.

He said that under Khama, the BDP has no respect for the rule of law and civil liberties are restricted. He stated that this could prove to be a major setback for Botswana’s democracy. He said that Khama is obsessed with being loved by the people to a point of wasting taxpayer’s money to buy a luxury caravan costing P1.8 million to tour the country.

Saleshando accused Khama of undermining democratic principles and wishing to introduce extreme Sharia-like laws. He took a swipe at the Directorate of Intelligence and Security (DIS) saying that it kills and tortures suspects.

He called on the police to prosecute DIS for the negligent shooting of a man in Maun during [continue reading]

source: Survival International
3 March 2009

Since the Bushmen were forced off their land in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR) in 2002, the Botswana government has granted 112 mining licenses for mining companies to explore in the reserve. 16 licenses have been awarded for uranium exploration and 40 for coal.

It is just over six years since the government evicted more than 600 Bushmen from the reserve, although it has always denied any connection between mining and the evictions.

Botswana’s Minister for Wildlife Kitso Mokaila says he supports mining in the reserve, saying ‘it has always been the policy of the government of Botswana that where there are minerals, they will be mined. Botswana has been built on the strength of mining. It will be a very good thing (to mine in the reserve).’

The Bushmen won the right to return to their land inside the reserve in a landmark ruling at Botswana’s High Court in 2006, where [continue reading]

source: BOPA
02 March, 2009

GABORONE – Provision of livestock is the only fruitful sector under the Remote Area Development Programme (RADP), says Kweneng East MP, Major General Moeng Pheto.

He said other programmes designed to assist Basarwa under the programme are not improving living standards.

Contributing to the budget proposal for the Ministry of Local Government last week, Maj. Gen. Pheto asked whether members of the public could contribute to the review of the RADP.

On other issues, the Kweneng East MP advocated for the provision of vehicles and furniture to tribal administrations in order to enable them to deliver.

He also supported the merging of the Local Police and Botswana Police Service, saying this would improve the [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Staff Writer

HAKATA, Japan: Last year, the value of second hand motor vehicles exports from Japan to Botswana increased by 27 percent to reach $13.1 million.

The figure is expected to increase as consumers continue to shy away from buying new cars. A report by Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO) says that from January to November, Japan exported cars worth $8.5 million to Botswana and busses and trucks valued at $4.6 million. During the same period, Botswana imported $124,000 worth of spare parts from Japan.

In a briefing recently, JETRO officials revealed that the transport sector takes the lion’s share of exports by principal commodities to Botswana.

Mmegi has learnt that most second hand cars exported to Africa are initially condemned to go to the scrap yard. But dealers who are mostly foreign nationals buy them at [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

The Ministry of Local Government has said that there will be no by-elections between now and October. This is despite the fact that four council seats are vacant. The decision to do away with by-elections has been taken because the country goes to the general elections in October.

A press release from the ministry’s public relations office said yesterday that preparations for the general elections are advanced and holding by-elections might cause confusion, voter fatigue and apathy during the general elections.

“It would be economically wasteful to hold elections to fill vacancies that will be rendered obsolete a month later. For example some of the new councillors (from the by-election) might not even sit in a single meeting,” said a statement from the ministry.

The statement said that [continue reading]

source: BBC News

The former financial adviser of Jacob Zuma, South Africa’s governing African National Congress leader, has been freed from prison on medical grounds.

Schabir Shaik was jailed in 2005 for making corrupt payments to Mr Zuma, who was then sacked as deputy president.

Mr Zuma has since become ANC leader and is their candidate for president in April’s elections.

He still faces charges of corruption – in connection to the 1999 multi-billion dollar arms deal – which he denies.


Shaik, who was sentenced to 15 years in jail, has spent most of his 28 months’ detention in hospital.

He was carried into the family home from an [continue reading]

source: BOPA
02 March, 2009

GABORONE – The Vice President, Lt Gen. Mompati Merafhe has urged the management of Rainbow and other private schools to consider the challenge and opportunities of establishing schools in rural areas because when the country grows and develops, skills and services would be required in those areas.

The Vice President said this at the official inauguration and celebration of the 10 years of quality education at the Rainbow High School on Thursday. Lt Gen. Merafhe said government continues to devote a very large share of the national budget to the educational sector because an educated and informed nation is critical for the socio-economic development of any society.

He said the current stage of development requires that the education system should produce educated and skilled people relevant to the needs of the modern economy.

Lt Gen. Merafhe said that the successful growth and [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Staff Writer

The executive secretary of the Botswana Teachers Union (BOSETU), Justin Hunyepa has said that their members need education after unionisation. Hunyepa was speaking after a letter from one of the members suggested that there is no consultation when subscriptions are increased.

The subscriptions were raised from P22 to P45, which is one percent of the teachers’ salaries. Hunyepa explained that the decision to increase the subscription, to match the International Labour Organisation (ILO) standards, came after a resolution taken at the Maun congress last year.

He indicated that all schools were represented by their shop stewards who were to brief all the teachers. “We realised that many of the stewards did not report back the resolutions to the teachers who did not attend. The other schools did not attend completely, and that might be the reason why some [continue reading]

Mon, 02 Mar 2009

An extraordinary summit of Southern African Development Community (SADC) heads of state is to be held soon to consider Zimbabwe’s proposals for financing the country’s economic recovery programme.

A date and venue will only be decided after consultation with heads of state and government, but it will “probably be in South Africa”, South African Foreign Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma told a media briefing on Friday after the SADC council of ministers’ meeting in Cape Town.

The meeting had agreed the summit should be held soon, “but not like tomorrow”. It was likely to take place before the G20 meeting on April 2 in London. “It is not easy to just call a meeting of heads of states,” Dlamini-Zuma said.

The purpose of the summit would be to “give impetus and support to what Zimbabwe is doing”.

There had not been a SADC heads of state and government meeting since the new Zimbabwe unity government had [continue reading]

source: BOPA
02 March, 2009

GABORONE – Inconvenience that some business people and tourists used to face will soon be a thing of the past as South African Airways (SAA) will on March 23, make a maiden flight from Johannesburg to Gaborone twice daily.

“SAA will be operating with the Airbus A319 with 25 seats in business class and 95 seats in economy,” reads the statement availed to BOPA.

The move is supported by both the Hospitality and Tourism Association of Botswana and Botswana Tourism Board.

Already the company has a representative in the country and does its services through Inter Cargo Services.

During a breakfast launch held at Phakalane Golf Estate, the SAA Country Manager Botswana, Ms Thobi Duma told BOPA that the [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

Troubled junior miner, DiamonEx has requested for another suspension of trading on its shares as it tries to wriggle out of a financial crisis.

Following the placement of DiamonEx Botswana under judicial management in January, the company suspended the trading of its shares on the Australian Securities Exchange, AIM and Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) until yesterday. A statement released by the company secretary Paul Crawford said yesterday that DiamonEx’s shares will remain suspended from trading on the ASX until the company board confirms its plans for the future.

“The Judicial Management Order which has been granted to DiamonEx’s wholly owned subsidiary, Diamonex Botswana Limited, remains in [continue reading]

source: BOPA
02 March, 2009

LOBATSE – Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) Marketing Manager Mr Sanie Molapisi says they are now exploring other alternatives for use of the tannery as it struggles to find a buyer.

The tannery is struggling to attract buyers following the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report which proposed that it should be relocated to a suitable site in the long term, which the report says would enable the tannery to carry out its activities without being a nuisance to neighbouring properties and where the necessary waste water treatment site and disposal can be accommodated on the same site.

However Mr Molapisi said in an interview that to avoid relocation, they have established that there other tanning processing or technologies that would not necessarily have a negative impact on the environment when adopted, adding that in view of the alternatives explored, the BMC may end up operating the tannery.

He noted that currently the tannery is just ‘sitting there’ with its operations limited to salting and storage.

Mr Molapisi said in the past, the tannery engaged in [continue reading]

source: News24
March 03 2009 at 02:56PM

South Africa is becoming a banana republic under the “new clique” in the ANC, UDM leader Bantu Holomisa said on Tuesday.

Holomisa, speaking at a UDM election rally in Zimbane village outside Mthatha, said it was easy to see how the ANC would operate if it came to power.

“They are rushing laws through Parliament, undermining democratic institutions and releasing criminals convicted of serious crimes simply because they are aligned to the ruling clique,” Holomisa said in a speech released to Sapa.

“This gives us an idea of where we are heading if this clique comes into power. We’re heading one way and that’s a banana republic. The voters must stop this one-party dominance. It only breeds [continue reading]