Archive for March 25th, 2010

source: Mmegi
STAFF WRITER

In the past two years, tenders worth P1.1million have been awarded to RFT Botswana (Pty) Ltd, a company owned by the spouse of the Minister of Justice, Defence and Security, Ramadeluka Seretse.

These revelations came to light yesterday in Parliament as Seretse responded to Dumelang Saleshando, MP for Gaborone Central who wanted to know how many tenders were awarded to this company by departments under Seretse’s ministry in the past two years, as well as who the directors of RFT Botswana (Pty) Ltd were.

Minister Seretse said the Special Procurement and Asset Disposal Committee have awarded two tenders to the company, and confirmed that [continue reading]

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source: BOPA
25 March, 2010

GABORONE – Industrial Property Bill passed its second reading in Parliament Tuesday, although some MPs expressed reservations on international treaties Botswana was a party to.

Kgatleng East MP, Mr Isaac Mabiletsa, said he found it difficult to support a bill which incorporated a number of international treaties he was not conversant with.

He said while he acknowledged the importance of the bill as it sought to protect indigenous knowledge, he could not support it because he did not know what Batswana stood to benefit from international intellectual property rights treaties and protocols Botswana signed.

MP Mabiletsa said Parliament should be informed before the executive signed and [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
TSHIRELETSO MOTLOGELWA
Staff Writer

The central committee has now released a statement, after a marathon meeting which was said to have lasted both the weekend and the whole day yesterday.

In the strongest sign yet of the no-nonsense attitude of the A-Team leader and party President Ian Khama, the statement has declared the gathering illegal, effectively demanding Barata-Phathi members quit the party and form their own.

The party indicated that since the meeting was not sanctioned by the BDP, it remains illegal and inconsequential to the party’s business, warning that [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
The Nation (Nairobi)
Kitsepile Nyathi
25 March 2010

Harare — Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister Tendai Biti last night survived a horrific accident when his official vehicle collided with a haulage truck about 120 kilometres outside Harare.

Although details of the accident were still sketchy, officials said Mr Biti who is also the secretary general of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) was out of danger and would be able to return to work immediately.

“The accident happened last night in Chegutu, he is stable and will be back to work, he just needs to be examined but he looks fine,” said MDC spokesman, Mr Nelson Chamisa on Wednesday.

But the accident is likely to [continue reading]

source: BOPA
25 March, 2010

Plans are underway to review the current Road Traffic Act to consider including issues such first aid for combi drivers and bus conductors, Parliament heard Tuesday. Transport and communications minister, Mr Frank Ramsden, underscored the importance of a national training programme for drivers and combi/bus conductors on first aid.

However, the minister said such training could not be undertaken at the moment due to a number of constraints such as finance and lack of capacity to enforce such. Nonetheless, Mr Ramsden promised that as the ministry engaged with operators and stakeholders they would encourage them to explore such initiatives.

He said issues of [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
GREG KELEBONYE
Staff Writer

No word could be a better fit for the response that President Ian Khama and the BDP central committee gave to the party’s faction of Barata-Phathi, following their decision to bolt from the ruling party than the Afrikaans word ‘voetsek!’

Literally “tie your feet up!”, and “stop following me!” or even ‘get lost!’. The decision is an expression of the feeling of the BDP central committee and party president following the announcement to form a new party by the faction, and after the faction served the president with a list of demands. The central committee found the demands simply ‘untenable’ and ‘outrageous’ and refused to meet any of them. If the Barata-Phathi had hoped that Khama and the central committee would even have [continue reading]

source: BOPA
25 March, 2010

PARLIAMENT – Botswana Unified Revenue Services (BURS) does not register companies for tax rebates, Assistant Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Mr Charles Tibone has said.

However, Mr Tibone said Section 51 (2) of the Income Tax, Cap 52.01 of the Laws of Botswana provides that where a person makes a donation to any institutions or sports club or sports association recommended by the minister responsible for education or the minister responsible for sports, respectively and approved by the commissioner general of BURS, the taxable income ascertained in respect of that person shall be subjected to the deduction of not less than P1 000 of the aggregate value in moneys worth of donations made by him.

Provided, the said deductions do not exceed 20 per cent of the persons aggregate income for [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
MONKAGEDI GAOTLHOBOGWE
Staff Writer

Coal-rich Botswana has announced its ambitious plans to reduce carbon emissions by setting up a 50 million-litre per year bio-diesel processing plant to be fed from jatropha (oil seed) plantations by 2012.

The project will be funded from the National Petroleum Fund as Botswana joins the fight against climate change and global warming.

Already efforts to acquire at least 70, 000 hectares of land for jatropha plantations to feed the bio-fuel plant are at an advanced stage, according to the Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources’ Committee of Supply Report to Parliament.

The report says the aim is to develop the land and then lease it to the private sector and local farmers, adding that the private sector will be motivated to [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Business Day (Johannesburg)
Wyndham Hartley
25 March 2010

Johannesburg — Rural Development and Land Affairs Minister Gugile Nkwinti yesterday failed to put out the fires raging over suggestions that productive farmland could be nationalised, instead raising new fears with a proposal that appears to curb property rights.

Recently, the department’s director-general, Tozi Gwanya, caused a stir when he tabled in Parliament a strategic plan that proposed declaring all productive land a national asset, implying nationalisation. Critics, including farmers’ group AgriSA, argued the proposals were a smokescreen to hide the department’s bungled implementation of land reforms.

AgriSA and opposition parties have warned of a devastating effect on agricultural investment.

Yesterday, introducing his budget vote in [continue reading]