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08.11.18
ORGAN REVIEWS PROGRESS The 39th African Association of Public Administration and Management (AAPAM) conference is a critical platform for articulation and dissemination of ideas on capacity building and development, Minister for Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration Mr Nonofo Molefhi has said. Officiating at the conference yesterday, he said it was an opportunity to share experiences on the need to enhance central governments as key players in driving inclusive development and sustainable service delivery. Mr Molefhi urged participants of the five-day conference to use it to celebrate progress made thus far in their respective countries such as enhancement of wide range of indicators in human welfare and wellbeing. He encouraged all to reflect and draw key lessons in relation to the planning and management of the national development frameworks. “We also need to rekindle our common resolve to work together and double our efforts, both continentally and globally in order to optimize the use of our limited national resources and achieve the national development outcomes we desire,” he said. Mr Molefhi said the conference came at a time when Botswana was implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development through which government remained committed to improving the economic and social wellbeing of the citizenry. He said in order to ensure synergy of the development agenda, National Development Plan 11 had been aligned with Vision 2036’s four pillars of sustainable economic development, sustainable environment, human and social development and governance, including peace and security He said Botswana embraced local initiatives for sustainable development as a way of enhancing community participation, ownership and leadership. The conference is held under the theme: Innovation, resourcefulness, integration and inclusivity; fundamentals for the transformation of governance and public administration in Africa to achieve the Agenda 2063 and Sustainable Development Goals. Minister Molefhi said the theme was clear testimony to a common commitment to finding everlasting solutions to the core challenges facing the continent and the desire to achieve greater prosperity through inclusive growth. Its objectives include finding innovative and creative ways as powerful enablers of transformation, promoting consultation, placing participation and inclusivity at the centre of the transformation interventions, proposing means of effective positioning, monitoring and evaluation tools for measuring the implementation of Agenda 2063 and SDGs. It also seeks to foster understanding of the five Ps”: People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, and Partnerships as tactical imperatives for the realization of Agenda 2063 objectives and SDGs. Mr Molefi said the other objective was to assess, acknowledge and embrace the centrality of the 4th industrial revolution as a guarantor of transformation of Africa’s public administration. He said the African Union, through Agenda 2063, had undertaken to promote the continent’s global competitiveness while addressing the core challenges of poverty, diseases and other forms of deprivation that continued to prevent Africa from achieving collective performance. BOPA
08.11.18
ARTS EXCHANGE SOCIETY TO FIRM TIES GABORONE - Minister of Tertiary Education, Research, Science and Technology says the launch of Africa-China Culture and Arts Exchange Society (ACCAES) will serve to expand relations between African countries and China beyond traditional jurisdictions of trade and diplomacy. Speaking at the launch ceremony recently, Ngaka Ngaka said the main objective of the society aimed to promote inter-cultural activities between African and Chinese artists. He said this initiative would also extend the growing bilateral relations in avenues of creativity and arts. “It exists to facilitate access by African artists to international creative markets and the exchange should enrich people across the cultural divide and promote a win-win cooperation and mutual exchanges in culture, arts and education,” he said. Ngaka said for a long period of time, cultural exchanges between China and African countries had been characterised by visits of government cultural delegations, exchanges of performance groups and joint exhibitors. “However, in recent years, the forms of cultural exchange have become more diverse,” he said, noting that Botswana has successfully hosted many new cultural events such as the China-Africa Culture and Arts Carnival, China-Africa International Film Festival, among others. The ACCAES is being set up to facilitate more of such people to people exchanges, he added. Ngaka said in June, ACCAES was formed in Gaborone and a preparatory committee selected. He said the Botswana interim committee drew from 14 registered arts associations and a six member steering committee was elected. The members are Ben Ngwato (chairperson), Katlo Lekgowe (vice chairperson), Sono Abram (treasurer), Refilwe Senna (secretary), Tebogo Tshesebe (vice secretary) and Michael Modise (additional member). He said members from the committee and from similar committees in other African countries would formulate the Africa committee that would, at strategic level, generate plans for execution by country structures to realise goals and objectives of the society. “I have been reliably informed that interim country committees have been set up in Botswana, South Africa, Zambia, Nigeria, Tanzania and Angola,” he concluded. For his part, Chinese Ambassador to Botswana, Zhao Yanbo said during the 2018 FOCAC Summit in Beijing last month, leaders of China and 53 African countries reached consensus on building an even strong China-Africa community with a shared future. He said as one of the important outcomes of the Summit, the Beijing Declaration stressed that people to people and cultural exchanges were of great significance for enhancing mutual understanding, friendship and cooperation between Chinese and Africans. “I firmly believe that with the launch of ACCAES, we will be able to better implement the outcomes of the Beijing Summit and add more bricks to the bridge of China-Africa friendship,” he said. Yanbo said with the establishment of ACCAES in Botswana, Batswana and her Chinese counterparts must do more to promote the exchanges and deepen the cooperation between China and Botswana. He said President Masisi’s state visit to China was a successful visit that marked the beginning of a new era in the development of both countries bilateral relations and would surely bring a new round of exchanges and cooperation in culture and arts. “I hope we can join hands in contributing to the ever-growing friendship between the peoples of China and Africa in the new age,” he concluded. BOPA
08.11.18
STORM CAUSES DAMAGES at SHAKWE, BOROTSI AND CHADIBE The rain that Batswana have eagerly been waiting for left some residents of Shakwe, Borotsi and Chadibe in the Mahalapye Sub-district without shelter. This follows the heavy showers characterised by strong winds that swept through the villages Tuesday afternoon. The District Disaster Management Team, led by Central District commissioner, Ms Berenice Berman-Mosime, Mahalapye Sub-district deputy district commissioner, Mr Bakue di Masole and senior assistant council secretary, Mr Gilbert Maifala were still on the field assessing the extent of the damage caused by the storm on Wednesday. However, no casualties were reported. At Borotsi in the Sefhare/Ramokgonami constituency, four of the affected residents were treated for minor injuries at the local health facility and discharged. The village development committee had temporarily housed one of the families that was left without shelter. The power supply lines in the villages were also affected by the strong winds. Mr Masole however instructed the Disaster Management Team to attend to the affected residents urgently and that those without shelter be housed temporarily in tents. Some of the affected residents were left without food since their groceries were soaked in rain water. He said they would appeal to businesses at the affected villages to assist those in urgent need of food. BOPA
08.11.18
MASS DROWNING OF BUFFALOES IN CHOBE RIVER The Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism wishes to inform the public of a mass drowning of Buffaloes in the Chobe River along the border of the Chobe National Park, on the edge of the Kabulabula Peninsula. Initial investigations by authorities on both sides of the Botswana / Namibia Border suggest that an exceptionally large buffalo herd was grazing in Namibia when they stampeded into th e Chobe river. The cause of the stampede is still uncertain and under investigation, however initial indications are that they were being chased by a pride of lions. It is estimated that more than 400 animals drowned due to the massive movement of buffalo trampling, and falling from steep river banks. Carcasses have largely been removed, most being harvested by community members who live along the river in Namibia. This is not an unusual occurrence as mass drownings have occurred before in the Chobe River notably off Sedudu Island. The cause of the stampede is still uncertain and under investigation, however initial indications are that they were being chased by a pride of lions. It is estimated that more than 400 animals drowned due to the massive movement of buffalo trampling, and falling from steep river banks. Carcasses have largely been removed, most being harvested by community members who live along the river in Namibia. This is not an unusual occurrence as mass drownings have occurred before in the Chobe River notably off Sedudu Island.
06.11.18
GABORONE - The Malaysian company tasked with reviewing the current public service remuneration system is expected to conclude its work before the end of December this year. Delivering the 2018 State of the Nation Address on November 5, President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi said once the PEMANDU Associates SDN.BHD report had been finalised, government would engage public sector unions on the recommendations thereto. Presiden t Masisi informed the nation he had appointed a commission to review the conditions of service for the MPs, councillors, Ntlo ya Dikgosi and the judiciary. He said the commission was also expected to submit its recommendations in December this year. It was government’s wish of for any recommendations agreed upon to be budgeted for and effected on April 1 2019, he said. President Masisi also said government was commitment to the resuscitation of the Public Service Bargaining Council to advance the interests of public sector employees in a fair and transparent manner. He said the PSBC was the most critical element in fostering good employee relations. It was therefore imperative that government and unions ensure the resuscitation of the important platform for more effective and constructive engagement, he said. He said government started the process of engaging all public service unions in August and subsequently a technical committee comprising union and government representatives was established to operationalise the council. The committee, he said, had been engaged in the process of crafting the constitution until recently when the process stalled as a result of demands by some unions that one union be excluded from the process. “Although the matter is now before a court of law, government remains resolute to negotiate with the public service unions, as partners, in order to improve the terms and conditions of service for public employees. I wish to also urge our union partners that in the spirit of give and take, it is desirable as per our tradition that we should strive to amicably resolve whatever differences that may arise during our engagements and only use the courts of law as a last resort,” he said. BOPA
30.10.18
VIBRANT INNOVATION ECOSYSTEM NECESSARY- GABORONE - The local economy needs to develop a vibrant innovative ecosystem since innovation offers new direction in economic and social growth. Speaking during the inaugural Botswana Innovation Fund (BIF) awards ceremony on Thursday in Gaborone, Vice President Slumber Tsogwane pointed that government had placed new emphasis on innovation and technology uptake as the new mode of growth for the economy. 
He said this was because innovation was a key enabler of the next wave of economic development.
30.10.18
MAFHUNGO/HUBONA - Permanent Secretary to the President, Mr Carter Morupisi says extending a helping hand to others did not mean a person has plenty. Officiating at the handing over of a block of two classrooms built by CCP Botswana at Mphinyane Primary School in Hubona recently, Mr Morupisi said many people who continued to extend a helping hand i n education had an understanding that education could change people’s lives. Mr Morupisi said education blends the different backgrounds of pupils and gives them equal opportunities to determine their future. He emphasised the need for all stakeholders to come together for a common goal to assist the education sector. He noted that government alone could not shoulder everything hence the need for stakeholders to come on board. He added that it was crucial that partnerships between parents, teachers, pupils and other individuals within the communities be nurtured to ensure that all people have a hand in driving excellence in schools. He pointed out that often people focus on structural developments forgetting that such developments would become meaningless if positive outcomes were not visible. Mr Morupisi said the good track records of good performance in schools were an indication that stakeholders did not look only at their challenges but worked hard to achieve the intended goal. “Government takes seriously the important role played by education in driving the growth of the economy hence it came up with Education Training Strategic Plan (ETSP),” he said. The strategy, he said, focused on developing and monitoring the capabilities of pupils from the time they started school so that their talents could be realised from the beginning. Appreciating the gesture, the area Member of Parliament and Assistant Minister of Tertiary Education, Research, Science and Technology, Mr Fidelis Molao implored the school to receive the donation with open arms and ensure that they used it wisely so that their partnership with the donor opens other doors. He also appreciated CCP Botswana for having considered one of the schools in his constituency. CCP Botswana managing director, Mr Kobamelo Kgoboko said they were pleased to be associated with the school and promised to continue working with the school for its success. Meanwhile, Mr Morupisi donated 50 blankets and 45 bags to Standard Seven pupils. BOPA
30.10.18
The Office of the President wishes to inform members of the Public that His Excellency Dr Mokgweetsi E.K. Masisi, the President of the Republic of Botswana, was not aware of the recent decision concerning the withdrawal of some support staff from the office and residence of the Former President Lt. General Dr Seretse Khama Ian Khama. In this regard, His Excellency the President, has apologised to the Former President for the misunderstanding. The Office of the President would like to inform that, whilst such a decision to withdraw additional support staff from the Former President was taken, the decision has since been rescinded whilst consultations with the Former President Lt. General Dr Seretse Khama Ian Khama are going on. The Office of the President would like to assure members of the Public that His Excellency the President fully supports the entitlements of Former Presidents in accordance with the provisions of the Presidents (Pensions and Retirement Benefits) Act[CAP.02:03]. The Former President, amongst other benefits, is entitled to a Private Secretary, a Secretary, an Office Attendant, two Drivers, two Maids and a Gardener, all who were deployed to his Office and Residence since 1st April 2018. The Officers who were withdrawn recently from the Office of the Former President include a Chief Catering Officer, a Senior Catering Officer, a Technical Assistant, a Senior Administration Officer and a Laundry Attendant who are additional support staff members who were requested by the Former President on a temporary basis during the transition period
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