The inaugural De Beers Girl in Engineering (GirlEng) training programme kicked off last week at the Itekeng Conference Centre in Orapa where 200 girls from nine secondary schools in the Boteti region took part.
De Beers, in partnership with Debswana and a non-governmental organisation Women in Engineering (WomEng), recently launched the a three-year P3.4 million programme to train the next generation of highly skilled young women engineers in Botswana, South Africa, Namibia and Canada. In Botswana, the programme is targeting 400 young female students and will also benefit 200 young women in neighbouring South Africa and another 200 in Namibia through assisting them in studying science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects.
In Orapa, the girls managed to interact with practising female engineers who are shared their career journeys with an aim of sparking interest in STEM education among the young female learners and provide tools and routes to access engineering technology careers. Another training session also targeting 200 young females will be conducted in Jwaneng. Jwaneng town has the richest diamond mine in the world while Orapa town is where the mine is the ninth biggest diamond mine in the world – Orapa Mine – is based.
“With a global shortage of engineers, and women representing only 11 per cent of the engineering workforce, attracting more young women into engineering is vital. In our fast-changing world, we need diversity of thought to find new solutions, we are thrilled to be alble to partner with WomEng and play a role in supporting the next generation of talented engineers who will play a critical role in shaping the future,” said Katie Fergusson, Senior Vice-President, Social Impact, De Beers Group.
WomEng aims to reach one million girls through its STEM education programme. “The role of women to uplift and design better futures is undeniable, which is why we have been on our mission to impact one million girls through STEM education. We are proud to work with companies like De Beers Group who share our same passion and vision to develop our future skilled women engineers in southern Africa. All girls need this kind of exposure as these fields are never marketed as being suitable for us,” said Naadiya Moosajee, the co-founder of WomEng.
Minister of Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration, Kabo Morwaeng together with Permanent Secretary to the President (PSP) Elias Magosi, this week refused to name and shame the worst performing Ministries and to disclose the best performing Ministries since beginning of 12th parliament including the main reasons for underperformance.
Of late there have been a litany of complaints from both ends of the aisle with cabinet members accused of providing parliament with unsatisfactory responses to the questions posed. In fact for some Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) backbenchers a meeting with the ministers and party leadership is overdue to address their complaints. Jwaneng-Mabutsane MP, Mephato Reatile is also not happy with ministers’ performance.
Bokamoso Private Hospital is battling a P10 million legal suit for a botched fibroids operation which resulted in a woman losing an entire womb and her prospects of bearing children left at zero.
The same suit has also befallen the Attorney General of Botswana who is representing the Ministry of Health and Wellness for their contributory negligence of having the unlawful removal of a patient, Goitsemang Magetse’s womb.
According to the court papers, Magetse says that sometimes in November 2019, she was diagnosed with fibroids at Marina Hospital where upon she was referred to Bokamoso Private Hospital to schedule an appointment for an operation to remove the fibroids, which she did.
Magetse continues that at the instance of one Dr Li Wang, the surgeon who performed the operation, and unknown to her, an operation to remove her whole womb was conducted instead. According to Magetse, it was only through a Marina Hospital regular check-up that she got to learn that her whole womb has been removed.
“At the while she was under the belief that only her fibroids have been removed. By doing so, the hospital has subjected itself to some serious delictual liability in that it performed a serious and life changing operation on patient who was under the belief that she was doing a completely different operation altogether. It thus came as a shock when our client learnt that her womb had been removed, without her consent,” said Magetse’s legal representatives, Kanjabanga and Associates in their summons.
The letter further says, “this is an infringement of our client‘s rights and this infringement has dire consequences on her to the extent that she can never bear children again”. ‘It is our instruction therefore, to claim as we hereby do, damages in the sum of BWP 10,000,000 (ten million Pula) for unlawful removal of client’s womb,” reads Kanjabanga Attorneys’ papers. The defendants are yet to respond to the plaintiff’s papers.
What are fibroids?
Fibroids are tumors made of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissue. They develop in the uterus. It is estimated that 70 to 80 percent of women will develop fibroids in their lifetime — however, not everyone will develop symptoms or require treatment.
The most important characteristic of fibroids is that they’re almost always benign, or noncancerous. That said, some fibroids begin as cancer — but benign fibroids can’t become cancer. Cancerous fibroids are very rare. Because of this fact, it’s reasonable for women without symptoms to opt for observation rather than treatment.
Studies show that fibroids grow at different rates, even when a woman has more than one. They can range from the size of a pea to (occasionally) the size of a watermelon. Even if fibroids grow that large, we offer timely and effective treatment to provide relief.
The Alliance for Progressives (AP) President Ndaba Gaolathe has said that despite major accolades that Botswana continues to receive internationally with regard to the state of economy, the prospects for the future are imperilled.
Delivering his party Annual Policy Statement on Thursday, Gaolathe indicated that Botswana is in a state of do or die, and that the country’s economy is on a sick bed. With a major concern for poverty, Gaolathe pointed out that almost half of Botswana’s people are ravaged by or are about to sink into poverty. “Our young people have lost the fire to dream about what they could become,” he said.