Archive for May 14th, 2009

`Big Brother State`

source: The Botswana Gazette
Written by JFG
Wednesday, 13 May 2009 07:23

Get ready for jail
Who is next?

Rev Prince Dibeela, of the UCCSA, has warned that Botswana is fast becoming a “Big Brother State” and said that this is a worrying development. “We are increasingly creating a society that is over-regulated. Every other week there is a new law or a directive that is meant to control us and the way we live our lives.”Speaking at the commemoration of the World Press Freedom Day in Gaborone at the weekend, Dibeela said besides the two most controversial laws that were enacted recently, the Directorate of Intelligence and Security Services and the Media Practitioners Act, a plethora of directives to do with the entertainment industry, traffic regulations and public conduct had been issued.

He said the challenge was that the way these regulations were developed was a departure from “our usual culture of consultation and consensus building.” The Reverend told his audience that as a person who travels widely, “people are asking us what is going on in Botswana and what has changed?“Some of us have been saying for a while now that there is a [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Staff Writer

DURBAN: The exact benefit and roles for South African neighbours such as Botswana from the FIFA 2010 World Cup still remain fuzzy despite assurances from the Local Organising Committee (LOC) that it will look beyond South Africa’s borders to meet accommodation shortages.

“We always said it is Africa’s World Cup and (that) we will be looking at the region to participate,” LOC CEO, Danny Jordan, said at a global media face-off at the Tourism Indaba held at the Chief Albert Luthuli Convention Centre here yesterday.

Alongside Botswana, Jordan named Swaziland, Lesotho and Mauritius as the neighbours looked to for extra beds to accommodate the close to 300 000 expected visitors for the soccer extravaganza. Fielding more questions on the readiness and exact roles of these countries by journalists who attended the [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Staff Writer

Pharmaceutical companies have reported that they are ready to supply the drug Tamiflu needed for treating A (H1N1), notoriously known as Swine Flu.

In an interview on Tuesday, the managing director of Premier Pharma, Naren Kharedi, said that information from Roche, a multinational pharmaceutical firm, had promised to supply the drug to Botswana soon. He said that at the moment, the company, which manufactures and supplies Tamiflu, is rolling it out to countries in Europe, especially ones hit by the Swine Flu virus.

“We have to have the drug here because we need this kind of medicine, especially looking at the fact that Swine Flu is a global concern,” Kharedi said.

Another local pharmaceutical company, Delta Pharmaceuticals, says it is ready to supply the [continue reading]

source: The Botswana Gazette
Written by JFG
Tuesday, 12 May 2009 14:01

But Govt Refuses to Allow them the Early Exit Package
This is a sign that people are not happy – Motshwarakgole

A government union leader says that many government employees are unhappy and are ready to quit government service anytime. The executive secretary of the Manual
Workers Union, Mr. Johnson Motshwarakgole, was responding to a circular sent to all heads of departments recently by the head of the Directorate of Public Service Management (DPSM), Ms Pearl Matome, who said strict conditions adhere to the application of the EEP.

Matome revealed that her organisation was inundated with calls from public officers seeking clarification on how to access the Early Exit Package. “The EEP will be applicable as and when government finds it necessary to embark on a programme of staff reduction arising out of a number of [continue reading]

13 May 2009

Public Enterprises Minister Barbara Hogan and renowned local artist William Kentridge are two South Africans that have been included in the 2009 TIME 100, the international news and current affairs magazine’s list of 100 most influential people over the course of the year.

The list groups influential people according to the categories leaders and revolutionaries, builders and titans, artists and entertainers, heroes and icons, and scientists and thinkers.
Dedicated service

The TIME profile written by Aids activist Sharon Stone describes Hogan as being made of profound experience, a dedicated service to her homeland, unflinching courage, conviction and compassion.

Mention is made of Hogan’s departure from the [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

PRETORIA: Experts have questioned the ability of South Africa to deal successfully with a major swine flu outbreak.

While the only person who is suspected to have swine flu or what is otherwise known as A(H1N1) seems to be recovering, South Africa has been training response teams in preparation for any possible influenza outbreak.

South Africa is the first country on the continent to report suspected cases of swine flu.

Dr Lucille Blumberg from the National Institute of Communicable Disease in South Africa said that the National Health Laboratory Services have been monitoring for [continue reading]

source: The Botswana Gazette
Written by JFG
Wednesday, 13 May 2009 08:19

While food prices are falling worldwide because of contracting economies consumers in Botswana are unlikely to see that benefit. South African retail chain stores announced early in the year that food prices would be cut, a sign that the worst for shop price inflation may be over for hard hit consumers.

However food prices in Botswana have remained relatively high despite the price cuts announced in South Africa showing the country still has a long way to go. A quick survey around chain supermarkets in Gaborone show that basic commodities are still priced high despite the decrease in fuel prices last year.

According to the March 2009 Consumer Price Statistics the Food and Non Alcoholic Beverages index group moved from 146.2 to 148.2, registering an increase of 1.3percent between February and March 2009. The rise was due to a general increase in [continue reading]

The Whitaker Group (Washington, DC)
source: allAfrica
Rosa Whitaker
13 May 2009

Slowly but surely, President Obama’s Africa policy is beginning to take shape. In my twenty-five years of work on African economic issues, I’ve seen consecutive US Administrations become increasingly more committed to Africa’s development. I don’t believe President Obama will be an exception.

The fact that his overall foreign policy is driven by experienced-hands with Africa expertise gives reason to believe that Africa will be well-integrated and supported within the broader US foreign and economic policy construct. Integrating Africa into US security, economic, foreign assistance, environmental and health policies rather than building an “Africa” policy isolated from broader US initiatives is pivotal – especially given Africa’s overall importance globally and dominance in multilateral institutions such as [continue reading]

source: The Botswana Gazette
Written by JFG
Wednesday, 13 May 2009 08:50

The African Development Bank (ADB) has reported that economic growth in Africa will slow to 2.8 percent in 2009, down from a previous forecast of 5.7 percent.

A statement from the bank finds that the region will be gravely affected by the global economic downturn following half a decade of above 5 percent economic growth. The African Economic Outlook anticipates growth to rebound to 4.5 percent in 2010, while growth in oil exporting countries is expected to fall to 2.4 percent in 2009.

The collapse of commodity prices and plummeting demand from OECD countries will have an adverse effect on Africa’s budget balances, with the regional budget deficit for 2009 predicted to be around 5.5 per cent of GDP compared to a [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Business Day (Johannesburg)
Dumisani Muleya
13 May 2009

Harare — THE editor and news editor of one of Zimbabwe’s main independent newspapers, arrested on Monday and jailed after publishing the names of secret agents involved in the abduction of opposition and civil activists, were released on $200 bail yesterday, lawyers and colleagues said.

Vincent Kahiya, editor of the Zimbabwe Independent, and news editor Constantine Chimakure were interrogated for much of Monday before being taken to cells at Harare central police station, a senior colleague who asked not to be named said yesterday.

“I spoke to them late this afternoon (Monday ), and they said they were going to spend the night inside,” the colleague said.

Kahiya and Chimakure’s lawyer, Innocent Chagonda, said: “We are very happy that they have been released because my clients believe this is just political harassment”.

The arrest is expected to stoke local and international criticism of [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

PRETORIA: Newly-elected South African President, Jacob Zuma, introduced his first wife, Sizakele Khumalo, to eager supporters at Saturday’s presidential inauguration.

Many South Africans now see her as the country’s “First Lady”.

“This is MaKhumalo, my eldest wives,” Zuma explained to the crowd outside the Union Building in Pretoria. MaKhumalo may be the elder of Zuma’s three wifes, but she still graced supporters in a flamboyant, young and lively outfit of purple and gold.

Prior to the inauguration South African media speculated that Zuma may be accompanied by all three of his wives on stage, possibly making them the First, Second and Third Ladies.

Zuma’s spokesperson, Zizi Kodwa, earlier denied any [continue reading]

source: The Botswana Gazette
Written by Botswana Gazette online
Wednesday, 13 May 2009 09:28

Jacob Zuma has been sworn in as the fourth President of the Republic of South Africa in one of the most remarkable political come backs in modern political history. The object of this article is to provide a synopsis of the challenges faced by the incoming president of the regional hegemony.

Zuma enters the highest office with a cloud hanging over his head. Notwithstanding its strong and purportedly a winnable case, the National Prosecuting Authority dropped charges of fraud, corruption, racketeering, tax evasion and money laundering against him shortly before the elections in what some believed was a political solution to a legal problem. Zuma has not been absolved by a court of law and to some that represent a credibility deficit on his part.

However, Zuma will have to win the trust of South Africans by rooting out corruption and he should desist from dubious companions of the likes of a convicted fraudster Shabir Shaik. South Africa is one of the most violent societies in the world, with about twenty thousand murders since last year; Zuma is faced with a challenge of [continue reading]