Former cabinet minister, Ramadeluka Seretse has turned downed the opportunity to contest the coming general elections under the newly formed Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) because he could not agree terms with their demands.
Seretse had warmed-up to the idea of joining the BPF, but the clash emerged when the leadership of the BPF did not want him to bring along his council candidates as well. Seretse revealed his position during a rally in Motetshwane Ward in Serowe North constituency this week.
“I have gone a long way with my council candidates campaigning in my constituency, we have already branded ourselves and I cannot leave them alone and contest under BPF,” said Seretse.
“BPF Secretary General, Roseline Panzirah-Matshome told me that Serowe North Constituency is causing confusion. The party want only me to contest under BPF not my council candidates. It is not fair.” He said moving to BPF leaving council candidates will mean a loss to him in 2019 general elections as his electorates will lose trust on him and vote for another candidate.
The former Minister of Defence, Justice and Security claimed that when he visited Serule, Gojwane, Topisi, Paje Tshimoyapula while on campaign, the resident told him that since BPF denied their residents to contest under the party they are not going to vote for the party, and urged him to remain independent.
Seretse indicated that during the feud between Lt Gen Ian Khama and his successor President Mokgwetsi Masisi, Khama told him that during 2019 general elections he is going to influence his followers to vote for UDC, but he advised him to form a new party. “I, Dr Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi, Foster Seretse, Prince Moitoi and Mojakgomo [Ronald] were the first people to help form the party and Dr Moitoi drafted the party constitution,’’ he said.
‘’I had an influential voice during Kanye to cancel elective congress. I was surprised when the party decided again to hold it in Palapye. Khama did the biggest mistake to let the party hold elective congress before general elections as I advised him.”
Seretse is of the view that the BPF leadership is causing confusion and that they do not respect electorates.
“They take decision without consulting them [members] as they have concluded to field Serowe North Parliamentary candidate, Baratiwa Mathoothe without consulting the constituents. This is going to give BDP a chance to win the constituency due to split of votes,” he said.
He expressed displeasure that BPF leadership is using Khama, saying they only make decisions without consultation on the basis that wherever BPF is contesting, it is going to win because of Khama.
According to Seretse, BPF decided to discuss other issues with other opposition parties at the exclusion independent candidates who are supporting Khama. He pointed out that Khama trust him very well, revealing that he is the one who recruited him to politics in 2003.
After winning general elections in 2004, former President Festus Mogae appointed him Minister of Lands and Housing. During Khama’s term he served as Minister of Defence, Justice and Security.
Even after losing 2014 general elections, Seretse said Khama wanted to appoint him Specially Elected MP but he declined. Seretse, who is cousin to Khama also stated that the latter offered him the leadership of a commission in Lesotho, but again he declined to take-up the post. Seretse, who was once considered heir to Khama’s presidency, said it will be not surprising for Khama to offer him support even if when he is not contesting under BPF because he has trust on him.
Information gathered suggest that Seretse became a target for opposing elective congress in Kanye. In response, his detractors in the BPF are contemplating fielding a candidate but the party will not do the same with Prince Maele, who is also contesting as an independent candidate. A highly placed source from BPF said BPF Deputy Treasurer Robert Maribe who is BPF council candidate in Motetshwane Ward in Serowe North has vowed to de-campaign Seretse for opposing elective congress in Kanye.
WeekendPost has been informed that Maribe is going around the ward telling electorates that they should not vote for council independent candidate, Mojakgomo and Seretse because they are still linked with BDP and are not members of BPF. According to informants, this has caused confusion as older people were of the understanding that they are voting for both independent candidates who supports Khama and who they are sure that they are going to join BPF after general elections.
Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) and some senior government officials are abuzz with reports that President Mokgweetsi Masisi has requested his Vice President, Slumber Tsogwane not to contest the next general elections in 2024.
The impacts of climate change are increasing in frequency and intensity every year and this is forecast to continue for the foreseeable future. African CEOs in the Global South are finally coming to the party on how to tackle the crisis.
Following the completion of COP27 in Egypt recently, CEOs of Africa DFIs converged in Botswana for the CEO Forum of the Association of African Development Finance Institutions. One of the key themes was on green financing and building partnerships for resource mobilization in financing SDGs in Africa
A report; “Weathering the storm; African Development Banks response to Covid-19” presented shocking findings during the seminar. Among them; African DFI’s have proven to be financially resilient, and they are fast shifting to a green transition and it’s financing.
COO, CEDA, James Moribame highlighted that; “Everyone needs food, shelter and all basic needs in general, but climate change is putting the achievement of this at bay. “It is expensive for businesses to do business, for instance; it is much challenging for the agricultural sector due to climate change, and the risks have gone up. If a famer plants crops, they should be ready for any potential natural disaster which will cost them their hard work.”
According to Moribame, Start-up businesses will forever require help if there is no change.
“There is no doubt that the Russia- Ukraine war disrupted supply chains. SMMEs have felt the most impact as some start-up businesses acquire their materials internationally, therefore as inflation peaks, this means the exchange rate rises which makes commodities expensive and challenging for SMMEs to progress. Basically, the cost of doing business has gone up. Governments are no longer able to support DFI’s.”
Moribame shared remedies to the situation, noting that; “What we need is leadership that will be able to address this. CEOs should ensure companies operate within a framework of responsible lending. They also ought to scout for opportunities that would be attractive to investors, this include investors who are willing to put money into green financing. Botswana is a prime spot for green financing due to the great opportunity that lies in solar projects. ”
Technology has been hailed as the economy of the future and thus needs to be embraced to drive operational efficiency both internally and externally.
Executive Director, bank of Industry Nigeria, Simon Aranou mentioned that for investors to pump money to climate financing in Africa, African states need to be in alignment with global standards.
“Do what meets world standards if you want money from international investors. Have a strong risk management system. Also be a good borrower, if you have a loan, honour the obligation of paying it back because this will ensure countries have a clean financial record which will then pave way for easier lending of money in the future. African states cannot just be demanding for mitigation from rich countries. Financing needs infrastructure to complement it, you cannot be seating on billions of dollars without the necessary support systems to make it work for you. Domestic resource mobilisation is key. Use public money to mobilise private money.” He said.
For his part, the Minster of Minister of Entrepreneurship, Karabo Gare enunciated that, over the past three years, governments across the world have had to readjust their priorities as the world dealt with the effects and impact of the COVID 19 pandemic both to human life and economic prosperity.
“The role of DFIs, during this tough period, which is to support governments through countercyclical measures, including funding of COVID-19 related development projects, has become more important than ever before. However, with the increasingly limited resources from governments, DFIs are now expected to mobilise resources to meet the fiscal gaps and continue to meet their developmental mandates across the various affected sectors of their economies.” Said Gare.
Letlhakeng:TotalEnergies Botswana today launched a Road Safety Campaign as part of their annual Stakeholder Relationship Management (SRM), in partnership with Unitrans, MVA Fund, TotalEnergies Letlhakeng Filling Station and the Letlhakeng Sub District Road Safety Committee during an event held in Letlhakeng under the theme, #IamTrafficToo.
The Supplier Relationship Management initiative is an undertaking by TotalEnergies through which TotalEnergie annually explores and implements social responsibility activities in communities within which we operate, by engaging key stakeholders who are aligned with the organization’s objectives. Speaking during the launch event, TotalEnergies’ Operations and HSSEQ, Patrick Thedi said, “We at TotalEnergies pride ourselves in being an industrial operator with a strategy centered on respect, listening, dialogue and stakeholder involvement, and a partner in the sustainable social and economic development of its host communities and countries. We are also very fortunate to have stakeholders who are in alignment with our organizational objectives. We assess relationships with our key stakeholders to understand their concerns and expectations as well as identify priority areas for improvement to strengthen the integration of Total Energies in the community. As our organization transitions from Total to Total Energies, we are committed to exploring sustainable initiatives that will be equally indicative of our growth and this Campaign is a step in the right direction. ”
As part of this campaign roll out, stakeholders will be refurbishing and upgrading and installing road signs around schools in the area, and generally where required. One of the objectives of the Campaign is to bring awareness and training on how to manage and share the road/parking with bulk vehicles, as the number of bulk vehicles using the Letlhakeng road to bypass Trans Kalahari increases. When welcoming guests to Letlhakeng, Kgosi Balepi said he welcomed the initiative as it will reduce the number of road incidents in the area.
Also present was District Traffic Officer ASP, Reuben Moleele, who gave a statistical overview of accidents in the region, as well as the rest of the country. Moleele applauded TotalEnergies and partners on the Campaign, especially ahead of the festive season, a time he pointed out is always one with high road statistics. The campaign name #IamTrafficToo, is a reminder to all road users, including pedestrians that they too need to be vigilant and play their part in ensuring a reduction in road incidents.
The official proceedings of the day included a handover of reflectors and stop/Go signs to the Letlhakeng Cluster from TotalEnerigies, injury prevention from tips from MVA’s Onkabetse Petlwana, as well as bulk vehicle safety tips delivered from Adolf Namate of Unitrans.
TotalEnergies, which is committed to having zero carbon emissions by 2050, has committed to rolling out the Road safety Campaign to the rest of the country in the future.