Archive for March 16th, 2010

Alcohol levy may rise

source: BOPA
15 March, 2010

SEROWE -President Lt Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama says he would consider increasing alcohol levy if Batswana continue to drink the way they do.

He said indications are that out of 50 drivers tested for alcohol, 40 are found to be over the limit, an indication that people are continuing to indulge in alcohol. President Khama was speaking in response to concerns raised at a kgotla meeting in Mmatshumo during his visit to Boteti last week.

Mr Moipontshi Pifelo had expressed concern about the youth of Mmatshumo, who he said abuse alcohol and disrespect elders. The President blamed parents for the waywardness of the youth, adding that parents should instill discipline in their children. He said children copy alcohol abuse from their parents, who indulge in [continue reading]

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source: Sunday Standard
by John Regonamanye
14.03.2010 6:31:14 P

Minister of Youth, Sport and Culture Shaw Kgathi this week absolved the company that was involved in the construction of Serowe stadium from any wrong doing, saying that the stadium’s disintegration before it was even used is a result of peculiar soil properties. He also laid the blame on communication breakdown between officers involved in the planning and the implementation phase of the project.

The multi- million pula Serowe stadium revealed glaring cracks immediately after its completion in 2001.
While many pointed accusing fingers at the corrupt construction industry, Kgathi insists that there was no foul play.

When answering a question from Chobe Member of Parliament, Gibson Nshimwe on Wednesday, Kgathi said that government has not taken any steps to recover its money as no one was found to be [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Monkagedi Gaotlhobogwe
Staff Writer

Hardly a year since the Local Police – the kgotla-based police officers – were merged with the Botswana Police Service, the situation has become so chaotic at the kgotlas that the Ntlo ya Dikgosi is now pushing for the return of the police to the kgotlas.

Vice-chairperson of Ntlo Ya Dikgosi, Kgosi Lotlaamoreng of Barolong says they have been meeting the minister responsible for dikgosi regarding this matter on a weekly basis as the matter needs urgent attention.

He revealed this during a luncheon with journalists shortly after the end of a weeklong workshop of the Ntlo Ya dikgosi members and the Office of the President.

Kgosi Lotlaamoreng says when [continue reading]

source: IOL
March 15 2010 at 01:24PM
By Gaye Davis
Group Deputy Political Editor

A government proposal to make productive farmland “a national asset” has sparked fears that the result will be nationalisation, with warnings that it could damage the agricultural sector.

It’s one of two options mooted by the Department of Rural Development in its strategic plan aimed at changing land tenure systems.

The plan says one option would be to declare “all productive land” a “national asset”, and envisages a quit-rent land tenure system “either with perpetual or limited rights”. This, it says, may require an amendment to the constitution’s property rights clause.

Annette Steyn, the DA’s deputy shadow rural development minister, said: “The president (Jacob Zuma) has just come back from overseas where he… moved to assure investors that nationalisation is not on the ANC’s agenda. The tabling of this report is an absolute rebuttal of [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Frederick Kebadiretse
Staff Writer

Government is currently exploring ways of harnessing biogas as an alternative source of energy for homes and industries throughout the country.

This was revealed by the Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources Ponatshego Kedikilwe at the demonstrations of a biogas plant in Lobatse last week.

Kedikilwe said the government started exploring reliable energy sources in 1976 through the Rural Industries Innovation Centre (RIIC), but did not pursue it further. “Renewable energy sources have been found to be of vital importance in recent times due to an increased energy demand worldwide,” he said. He added that [continue reading]

source: Sunday Standard
by Sunday Standard Reporter
14.03.2010 6:08:27 P

It seems bigger things are coming to Botswana’s tiny aviation industry as government and regulators are in discussion with a number of international airliners to use Botswana routes.

This also comes at a time when Sir Seretse Khama International Airport (SSKIA) expansion project is coming on stream with bigger and better facilities.

Frank Ramsden, Transport and Communications Minister, revealed on Friday that Botswana is currently in discussion with a couple of airliners.

“We are talking to Britain, but they have turned it down because they previously operated here and were not impressed by the facilities,” said the minister.

Other bigger ones include Air Mauritius, Singapore Airlines and Qatar Airways.

British Airways (BA) used to operate the [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Mbongeni Mguni
Staff Writer

The recession and its numerous ill-effects on workers has dramatically reduced the appetite for credit among households, the latest Bank of Botswana statistics indicate.

According to the central bank, household borrowings rose by 23 percent or P1.88 billion during 2008, meaning that workers owed commercial banks P9.76 billion by the end of that year. In contrast, borrowings during 2009 rose by only 8.7 percent or P916.4 million, ending the year at P11.44 billion.

While total credit advanced by commercial banks went up by P309.5 million between November and December last year, households only accounted for P105.3 million of this figure, representing a change from previous years when household loans led credit growth.

As at December last year, credit to households accounted for [continue reading]

source: Sunday Standard
by Tlotlang Rahube and Angela Mdlalani
14.03.2010 6:34:17 P

Minister of Wildlife and Tourism, Onkokame Kitso Mokaila, will represent Botswana at the upcoming 15th conference of parties to CITES scheduled for the 13-25th March in Doha, Qatar.

Mokaila said the proposed scope calls for the extension of the ban on selling of legal ivory from the agreed 9 to 20 years as well as the extension of the ban to cover all the African elephant range states.

The purpose of the conference is for Botswana and other affected countries to argue the Kenya proposal to extend the scope of the annotation for the listing of the elephant population of Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe.

Botswana has called for 9 years while Kenya had said it be 20 years.
“The elephant proposal by Kenya and her allies is against the [continue reading]

source: Sunday Standard
by Morula Morula
14.03.2010 6:28:52 P

Investigations into corrupt practices at the Ministry of Education’s Department of Student Placement and Welfare are said to have hit a snag after the system that contains information on student loans, the Student Loans Management System (SLMS), allegedly broke down.

As a result the twenty eight officials of the DSPW who were interdicted over allegations of corruption are still in the dark as to what the future holds for them, long after the MoE promised that it will communicate with them.

The officers were interdicted three weeks ago amid allegations of corruption, with promises that they will be contacted in two weeks, after investigations have been carried out.
One of the junior officers who were interdicted told Sunday Standard that they have started feeling very insecure about [continue reading]

source: BOPA
15 March, 2010

PARLIAMENT – Parliament last Friday deferred 15 motions due to absence plus unpreparedness of some legislators.

Shoshong MP Philip Makgalemele was supposed to table five motions and was absent when the speaker called him to present them.

One motion listed number two in the Friday schedule was to request government to sponsor students to study at Botswana College of Distance and Open Learning.

He had also noticed a motion to urge government to undertake a tracer study of out of school youth in Botswana so as to be more informed on their plight and [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
The Times of Zambia (Ndola)
15 March 2010
editorial

IN recent times, the Government and in particular President Banda have come under criticism for embracing and developing the relationship with China.

The opposition parties have taken every opportunity to criticise the Government even for issues that have nothing to do with government to government relations.

For instance, any mistake committed by a Chinese owned company is blamed on Government even when it is clear that the Government has nothing to do private companies.

Many have also criticised Government for seeking financial and other forms of aid from the Chinese Government.

But the recent words by International Monetary Fund (IMF) which encouraged Zambia and other developing countries to seek aid from China, proves that Government decision to continue dealing with the Chinese government was correct.

China is a growing power in the world and its financial and political muscle cannot be ignored. Its influence in [continue reading]