Archive for July, 2010

source: Mmegi
NELSON DIRENG
Correspondent

The Minister of Labour and Home Affairs, Peter Siele said the government is committed and willing to collaborate with relevant stakeholders to ensure the success of the Free Movement of Persons within Southern Africa initiative

Siele was speaking at a Southern Africa Development Community Council of Non Governmental Organisation (SADC-NGO) free movement of persons campaign held on Tuesday in Gaborone. The campaign brought together state and non-state actors (NSA) from the SADC region. Siele said the purpose of the gathering was to open up a multi-stakeholder dialogue on how best SADC can make the movement of citizens of the region convenient and efficient. He said that the free movement of people within the region is a phenomenon that spans generations from the pre-colonial period. He said there was need for this movement to be revived because there were better people relations then. Botswana is leading by example as they have already [continue reading]

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source: SW Radio Africa
Staff Writer
29th July 2010

ZANU PF has announced that Sabina Mugabe has died after a long illness. She was 76.

ZANU PF spokesman, Rugare Gumbo, said Sabina would be buried at Heroes Acre after the politburo were ‘unanimous in granting her that honour.’

The Associated Press news agency said her death would be a severe blow to Robert Mugabe, as he is a man known to have few friends and she was a most trusted family confidante and [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
EPHRAIM KEORENG
Staff Writer

South East South MP, Odirile Motlhale defected to the Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) yesterday, saying that he is fed up with intolerance from the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) leadership.

The MP, speaking at a press conference in Ramotswa, said he is not leaving the BDP because of factionalism.

“My defection has nothing to do with factionalism. I realised that the BDP leadership had no intention of addressing the disquiet in the party.

The party was and is still divided,” he said. The legislator added that as a representative of the people, he has grown tired of being forced to toe the party line in Parliament against issues that [continue reading]

source: IOL
July 30 2010 at 07:21AM

By Moshoeshoe Monare Political Editor

The ANC is in a worse state than it was before the Polokwane conference, plagued by faction fighting and power struggles, an internal document suggests.

In a sensational paper prepared for the September national general council – a mid-term meeting to review programmes of the organisation – the ANC acknowledges that it is facing “moral decay”.

Commenting on the document at a press conference on Thursday, secretary-general Gwede Mantashe acknowledged there was a problem of dirty lobbying and cash flowing at ANC conferences.

The document said that the situation had in fact worsened since the Polokwane conference in 2007, and that lobbying for leadership positions was [continue reading]

source: SW Radio Africa
By Tererai Karimakwenda
July 29, 2010

The violence and intimidation being perpetrated by ZANU-PF to sabotage the constitutional outreach programme has turned into a fully-fledged official campaign dubbed, Operation “Vhara Muromo”, which means “Shut Your Mouth”. This is intended to make it clear that those with views opposed to official ZANU-PF policies are to remain quiet at the outreach meetings being conducted around the country.

Many people are reported to have gone into hiding and others have been assaulted or displaced after making contributions deemed to be sympathetic of the MDC on [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
MONKAGEDI GAOTLHOBOGWE
Staff Writer

While some community trusts are jubilant about the capital raised in the recent auctioning of 92 elephants, sombre mood prevails in other trusts which feel the auction did not go well for them.

The chairperson of Xhauxhwatubi Trust at Phuduhudu, Omphile Mash Libalamwe, says she is unhappy that the auction failed to raise even a quarter of their targeted P1.8 million.

The trust, which is located some 100km from Maun, auctioned 22 elephants, and all of them were snapped up, but buyers were not willing to pay more than P5,000 for them. About 10 elephants were sold for [continue reading]

source: The Botswana Gazette
Tuesday, 27 July 2010 12:45

As Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) subsidiary BPC Lesedi steps up efforts on rural electrification across the country, the company has joined hands with a strategic partner, Electricite de France (EDF) to ease the task.

EDF and BPC signed a shareholders and share purchase agreement which is expected to prop up the country’s solar photovoltaic systems, reducing pressure on the Corporation’s grid electricity.

The purchase agreement saw EDF fork out P14 million, for a 45 percent stake in BPC Lesedi while BPC remains the major shareholder.

And the joint venture is expected to connect at least 2 000 customers by the end of 2011 and reach 50 000 to 70 000 households within 10 years.

Apart from injecting equity EDF will send an expert who will be [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
CHANDAPIWA BAPUTAKI
Staff Writer

The Ministry of Education has stuck to its original budget in sponsoring new students at the University of Botswana and does not need any additional funds for this exercise.

Speaking to Mmegi yesterday, the permanent secretary in the ministry Ruth Maphorisa, said they had to put their heads together and come up with a plan to source funds for new students.

“We utilised the savings from last year that amounted to P350 million to sponsor new students. Government also took a decision that all civil servants that were supposed to go for [continue reading]

source: SW Radio Africa
By Lance Guma
28 July 2010

South African President Jacob Zuma dispatched one of his top envoys to Zimbabwe, in yet another attempt to try to kick start power sharing talks that are gridlocked over various violations of the GPA by ZANU PF.

Former Transport Minister Mac Maharaj arrived on Tuesday and was expected to meet separately with the three party principals, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara and Robert Mugabe. Officials as usual were very coy about releasing any information to the media.

Suggestions that Maharaj would also meet inter-party negotiators were dismissed as wide of the mark by some senior MDC officials. One official also told us Maharaj, as a facilitator in the talks, had no mandate to meet all three principals at once and that the only person who could do this was the chief facilitator Jacob Zuma. The mission to Harare by Maharaj is being viewed as laying the ground-work for a [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
CHANDAPIWA BAPUTAKI
Staff Writer

The Minister of Education, Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi told Parliament yesterday that the government will sponsor all eligible students admitted to the University of Botswana (UB) this year.

She explained that the decision was taken after she met with UB representatives to reconcile the figures of students who have submitted applications for sponsorship.

She stated that as at July 9, 2010, there were 3,519 applications for sponsorship received by the ministry against the targeted 3,462, resulting in an excess of 59. “I am aware that some students did not meet the deadline for submission of applications for sponsorship. I am therefore of the view that it is only fair for [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
BuaNews (Tshwane)
27 July 2010

Pretoria — The Bureau for Economic Research (BER) estimates South Africa’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will be adjusted downwards to 3.1 percent for 2010.

“For 2010 as a whole we have made a downward adjustment (from 3.4 percent in April to 3.1 percent) in the GDP growth forecast,” said the Bureau for Economic Research (BER) in its economic prospects statement on Tuesday.

According to the BER, two thirds of the 2010 growth is forecast to be the result of an end to the huge inventory decline that was witnessed in 2009.

“One of the implications of this growth mix is that the underlying conditions in the economy may remain weaker than what would normally be characteristic of a 3.1% real GDP growth environment,” said BER senior economist Hugo Pienaar. As a result, no job growth is [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
MBONGENI MGUNI
Staff Writer

Botswana is expected to break new ground by becoming the first SACU member to establish a national body responsible for various trade issues including tariffs.

Under a 2002 agreement, the five SACU members have an April 2011 deadline to establish such a body. The Botswana Ministry of Trade and Industry says the national body will be responsible for investigating and evaluating applications with regard to alleged dumping or subsidised exports into the country. It will institute safeguard measures, amend customs duties/tariffs and make recommendations to the SACU Tariff Board.

The national body will determine eligibility for [continue reading]

source: IOL
July 27 2010 at 06:52PM

Cabinet on Tuesday announced interim fines for members of the executive, including the president, who breach the ethics code.

If ministers or the president fail to comply with the code, they can be fined up to a month’s salary, or see their salaries and benefits reduced for a period of up to 15 days, government spokesman Themba Maseko said.

Maseko said these measures were prompted by Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s report finding President Jacob Zuma in breach of the code for failing to declare his interests within 60 days of taking office.

They will apply until Justice Minister Jeff Radebe tables a report on a comprehensive review addressing weaknesses in the code listed by [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
ISAIAH MOREWAGAE
Staff Writer

The Member of Parliament for Ramotswa, Odirile Motlhale, is set to formally announce his resignation from the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) to join the opposition Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) at a press conference tomorrow morning in Ramotswa.

BMD sources say Motlhale has been one of them to all intents and purposes, having formally informed his supporters over the weekend. The youthful MP will be unveiled by the BMD at the press conference that will be addressed by his friend, interim BMD chairperson Botsalo Ntuane. Motlhale would not entertain any media enquiries yesterday at the National Assembly, although he donned a tie in the telltale orange colour of the BMD. Motlhale arrived at Parliament Buildings with [continue reading]

source: IOL
July 27 2010 at 06:40PM

South African President Jacob Zuma will not be fined for violating the cabinet’s ethics code, after he was eight months late in declaring his assets, a government spokesman said Tuesday.

This is despite a cabinet agreement last week that fines should be paid if ministers or the president fail to comply with the executive ethics code.

Government spokesman Themba Maseko said cabinet members could be fined up to a month’s salary, or see their salaries and benefits reduced for a [continue reading]