Archive for September 15th, 2010

source: Mmegi
Staff Writer

Businesses in Botswana are becoming less optimistic about their 2010 prospects than they were last year as negative expectations on regulations, red tape and lack of skilled manpower take hold.

According to a survey carried out by international accounting and consultancy firm, Grant Thornton, Botswana business expectations for employment growth, revenues and profitability remain positive while bureaucracy and a lack of skilled workers are holding businesses back.

As a result, the country’s optimism level has fallen 19 percentage points from +81 percent in 2009 to +62 percent in 2010.
This compares unfavourably with optimism among businesses globally, which rose by 40 percentage points to +24 percent from -16 percent.

The Grant Thornton International Business Report (IBR) is an [continue reading]


source: allAfrica
Southern African News Features (Harare)
14 September 2010

Significant progress has been made by COMESA, EAC and SADC to establish an enlarged Free Trade Area encompassing 26 countries in east and southern Africa by 2012.

A report presented to recent summits of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) said the three regional economic communities are committed towards deepening integration through the harmonization of their trading arrangements.

Chairperson of the Tripartite Taskforce, which is spearheading the implementation process, Ambassador Juma Mwapachu, said a draft plan of action on the FTA has been approved by the three secretariats for adoption at the forthcoming Tripartite Summit of the Heads of State and Government expected in early 2011.

However, COMESA and SADC have already endorsed the roadmap as [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

SELEBI-PHIKWE: Shortage of manpower in health facilities and mal-functioning equipment are hampering the provision of good health services in Selebi-Phikwe.

This came to light when the Parliamentary Health Committee and the Special Select Committee on HIV/AIDS toured health facilities yesterday.

A senior nurse at Tapologong Clinic, Ditsame Kebalepile said the facility, which is the biggest clinic in Selebi-Phikwe, operates with six nurses and one doctor. She said the maternity wing has eight nurses who work on shifts. Kebalepile mentioned that most of the equipment they use is too old. She noted that nurses are also forced to do other duties due to lack of qualified manpower. The MPs were also informed that close to seven nurses resigned between June and August while others went on [continue reading]

source: SW Radio Africa
By Tichaona Sibanda
14 September 2010

The ZANU PF party has kicked into election mode after it recently launched a campaign that many of its opponents view as a coded message to activate its political violence machinery.

The party’s national chairman, Simon Khaya Moyo, launched a new campaign dubbed ‘ZANU PF: The Unstoppable Machine,’ using newspaper advertisements to fire broadsides at political parties such as the MDC formations. Part of the messages contained in the campaign includes statements like; ‘The legacy left by our fallen heroes should never allow any visionary Zimbabwean to live on borrowed oxygen.’
‘Cognisant of the fact that the land reform program is now complete and also irreversible – the thrust being now on economic emancipation of our entire people and unity of purpose. Offshoot political parties will remain offshoot, offside and scoring own goals,’ read some of the statements.

MDC-T deputy organizing secretary Morgan Komichi told us on Tuesday this is the type of intimidatory language ZANU PF always tries to use to [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

Rich countries should pay for African governments to get advice on negotiating the best deals for exploiting their natural resources, a panel set up by former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said yesterday.

The Commission for Africa, which includes serving and former African leaders and financial figures among its 17 members, also called on donor governments to provide an extra $10-billion to $20-billion a year to help Africa adapt to climate change. Five years after the commission’s initial report helped focus international efforts to boost development in the poorest continent, the panel issued a new report praising the progress African countries had made on the economy and on increasing spending on health, education and agriculture.

But it said much remained to be done. Despite average annual growth rates for Africa of six percent for much of the past decade and a [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Radio France Internationale (Paris)
14 September 2010

Zimbabwe held a secret auction of diamonds from its Marange fields, where the army has been accused of forced labour and torture, an official said Tuesday.

“Yes, the sales were carried out this weekend,” Secretary for Mines Thankful Musukutwa told AFP, without giving further details.

The auction on Saturday and Sunday was supervised by Abbey Chikane, the monitor from the international Kimberley Process watchdog, another official said on condition of anonymity.

Kimberley Process is charged with preventing the sale of “blood diamonds” used to fuel armed conflicts.

In November the regulator banned sale of the gems from Marange after its investigators found soldiers had beaten nearby residents and [continue reading]