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Guma, Maele, Venson-Moitoi reject BPF leader

The expelled former Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) legislator Guma Moyo together with the party’s suspended MP Prince Maele have decided against joining the newly formed Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) pending finalisation of pre-election program as well as the party hierarchy, WeekendPost has established.

Not only has the duo had a problem with the current development, veteran politician Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi has decided to remain with the BDP after her bid to become the party presidency failed. Reports coming from the party conveners in Serowe show the party in a precarious situation with this weekend congress expected to be a make or break the party going forward.

The main concern especially from the ‘elders’ in Serowe is the party presidency should be given to a more mature and experienced politician. The suggested name from Serowe was that of Venson-Moitoi. However, it is said Butale rejected the advice and remained as the face of the party. “Butale wants the presidency, but the people who formed the party want Venson-Moitoi. High profile cadres, at least 10, have met him cajoling him to leave that seat for her but he has rejected that proposal,” revealed a source on Thursday afternoon.

As of now with the dynamics playing out, Maele who has briefed his constituents on the matter has been told to remain independent until the dust settles.  “He has been asked to remain as he is but could join after Venson-Moitoi assumes the presidency of which looks unlikely. But there is still possibility of him joining because again his advisers want him to join if the party has a solid structure nationally and regionally as well as elections program,” added a high placed informant.

This publication is further informed that this rumpus is the reason why there are no activities in the central region. The rallies and mobilisation, reports say have paused because the elders feel they were given a deaf ear, including Ramadeluka Seretse who is not happy with the current turn of events in the party. Furthermore the Serowe advisers want party to recruit more MPs but believe Butale’s ego could rather bring more harm than the good as MPs could only join if Venson-Moitoi is leading. “The argument is you can’t start a party with one MP, at least if they were four it could lay a convincing structure and show people the seriousness of it.”

Butale’s onslaught on president Mokgweetsi Masisi is another factor that irks the party. “The elders lament that he is shooting the wrong target in Masisi. The focus according to the veterans should be the BDP and how the party is going to run governance if they win, not Masisi, but he is busy focused on Masisi,” said the informant.

On the other side Guma-Moyo who has gone AWOL amid assassination claims, is reported to be a very much member of the party, but unhappy with Butale as the face of the party. This is said to be the reason why he will not grace today’s [Saturday] congress. For this weekend’s event, the party will launch slogans, colours as well as calling those who want to contest to raise hands, it will be just be a conference, source said.  

BPF ELDERS GIVE CDC ULTIMATUM

With the events unfolding it is said the Serowe conveners want everyone who wants to join, to do so this weekend or leave. The plan is central district MPs who want to join in principle should do so or risk being de-campaigned. “The MPs are under pressure, because they have been told it is now or never. Remember the councilors set the bandwagon by resigning and ultimately moving with the structures. Now this has put the MPs on a tight corner since the structures are gone and they should follow.”

However it is said Butale has pleaded with the elders to be patient and not rush to press the MPs. “The party is targeting 12 central constituencies and Butale has asked the older generation to keep calm because he says he worked with them and knows that they won’t disappoint.”

KHAMA REJECTED BPF CHAIRPERSON

Former President Ian Khama is reported to have also decided against being the party chairperson. Reports say he was asked to but he only suggested he could take the patron post which he did. This however leaves a lot to be desired on his loyalty to the party he championed its formation. Khama is also said to be mum on the party presidency because the “project has gone beyond him and Butale but now it is managed by the elders.”

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Over 2 000 civil servants interdicted

6th December 2022

Over 2,000 civil servants in the public sector have been interdicted for a variety of reasons, the majority of which are criminal in nature.

According to reports, some officers have been under interdiction for more than two years because such matters are still being investigated. Information reaching WeekendPost shows that local government, particularly councils, has the highest number of suspended officers.

In its annual report, the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) revealed that councils lead in corrupt activities throughout the country, and dozens of council employees are being investigated for alleged corrupt activities. It is also reported that disciplined forces, including the Botswana Defence Force (BDF), police, and prisons, and the Directorate of Intelligence and Security (DIS) have suspended a significant number of officers.

The Ministry of Education and Skills Development has also recorded a good number of teachers who have implicated in love relationships with students, while some are accused of impregnating students both in primary and secondary school. Regional education officers have been tasked to investigate such matters and are believed to be far from completion as some students are dragging their feet in assisting the investigations to be completed.

This year, Mmadinare Senior Secondary reportedly had the highest number of pregnancies, especially among form five students who were later forcibly expelled from school. Responding to this publication’s queries, Permanent Secretary to the Office of the President Emma Peloetletse said, “as you might be aware, I am currently addressing public servants across the length and breadth of our beautiful republic. Due to your detailed enquiry, I am not able to respond within your schedule,” she said.

She said some of the issues raised need verification of facts, some are still under investigation while some are still before the courts of law.

Meanwhile, it is close to six months since the Police Commissioner Keabetwe Makgophe, Director General of the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) Tymon Katlholo and the Deputy Director of the DIS Tefo Kgothane were suspended from their official duties on various charges.

Efforts to solicit comment from trade unions were futile at the time of going to press.

Some suspended officers who opted for anonymity claimed that they have close to two years while on suspension. One stated that the investigations that led him to be suspended have not been completed.

“It is heartbreaking that at this time the investigations have not been completed,” he told WeekendPost, adding that “when a person is suspended, they get their salary fully without fail until the matter is resolved”.

Makgophe, Katlholo and Kgothane are the three most high-ranking government officials that are under interdiction.

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Masisi to dump Tsogwane?

28th November 2022

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.

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African DFIs gear to combat climate change

25th November 2022

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.

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