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Bangwato regents want TK to follow SKI

Bangwato traditional leaders who are also advisers to former President Lt Gen Dr Ian Khama and his family have told Tshekedi Khama that blood is thicker than water, and as a matter of urgency, he should defect from Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) and join his elder brother at his new political home, Weekendpost has been told.

The tribal leadership comprised of Regent Sediegeng Kgamane, wards leaders and ‘Bo-Rangwanaa-kgosi’ who are all advise-givers to Khama last week unanimously agreed that their Chief (Ian Khama) should leave BDP. This publication’s sources say, the belief in Serowe is, former president has suffered a lot under the current administration and should now find a new home of refugee where he will be free to do his communal work without being accused for interfering with Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi’s presidency.

On top of a series of meetings the tribal leadership have held so far, they also agreed that Ian’s younger brother Tshekedi should come out of the woods and follow his brother. For a long time Tshekedi has been mute on the feud involving his brother and President Masisi and the fed up tribal leadership wants him to show his true colours.

“Blood is thicker than water and the agreement here is he should give support to his brother by leaving the party and follow him. He has been quite for some time which was right since he is serving in Masisi’s cabinet, but it is concerning because SKI needs his support,” a source privy to last week’s meeting told this publication on the sidelines of Khama’s meeting last weekend.

Tshekedi has been reminded that he should show the support he pledged to Ian Khama in the late 90’s when instead of contesting Serowe West he allowed Ian Khama to contest in order to become the country’s Vice President. It is said already Tshekedi who is also the Minister of Youth Empowerment Sports and Culture Development (MYSC) has been contacted to remove the BDP mask. “In short the agreement is TK should join Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) where SKI is a patron,” adds another source this week. “If he can’t then he should be an independent candidate.” Tshekedi who is the MP for Serowe West constituency first won it in 2008 when Ian Khama assumed Presidency.  

While Tshekedi could not commit to leaving the BDP as for now, the anticipation according to those who attended the meeting is that there is high possibility that he will eventually leave the party. “For now though Masisi does not trust him in cabinet, he cannot get rid of him. Same thing with TK, he does not want to create any loophole that could be used against him. That is why he never attends SKI’s meetings or make any public statements, because he wants to be trusted in the cabinet but he will leave at the end of the day if that pressure is something to go by.”

The agreement which Serowe old guards agreed amid murmurings is, even if TK does not leave the BDP now, he can still leave after elections in October. This however is not the ideal move as the leaders want to de-campaign the BDP before elections   
Reports say the mood in Serowe main Kgotla is so volatile to the extent that the traditional leadership has already hatched a grand plan to eradicate the party in the village.

“BDP is no longer wanted in Serowe. Magosana are going to be mobilized to influence other tribesmen not to vote the BDP in the three Serowe constituencies because the party leadership has humiliated Kgosi Kgolo. It will be a draining exercise but the traditionalists are upbeat that at the end of the day the plan will pass,” says a source very close to the dynamics.

After wards leaders address their subjects it will be followed by regent’s address who will occasionally be accompanied by other Khama advisors to audit as to whether the script has been followed to the letter. Other constituencies like Serowe North under BDP’s Kgotla Autlwetse will also be visited by Bogosi delegation to ensure that Bangwato ‘vote wisely.’ The crusade will not only end in Serowe but will spill to other Central District constituencies where the paramount chief of the area (SKI) will hold Kgotla meetings to address and canvass votes for those aligned to him.

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Fighting vulture poisoning in KAZA region.

3rd February 2023
As a response to avert vulture poisoning currently going on in Botswana and KAZA region, Birdlife Botswana has collaborated with three other partners (BirdWatch Zambia, BirdLife International & Birdlife Zimbabwe) to tackle wildlife poisoning which by extension negatively affect vulture populations.

The Director of Birdlife Botswana, Motshereganyi Virat Kootshositse has revealed in an interview that the project which is funded by European Union’s main goal is to reduce poisoning related vultures’ death and consequently other wildlife species death within the KAZA region.

He highlighted that Chobe district in Botswana has been selected as a pilot site as it has experienced rampant incidents of vulture poisoning for the past few months. In August this year at least 50 endangered white backed vultures were reported dead at Chobe National Park, Botswana after feeding on a buffalo carcass laced with poison.  In November this year again 43 white backed vultures were found dead and two alive after feeding on a zebra suspected to have poisoned.  Other selected pilots’ sites are Kafue in Zambia and Hwange in Zimbabwe.

Kootshositse further explained they have established a national and regional Wildlife Poisoning Committee. He added that as for the national committee they have engaged various departments such as Crop Productions, Agro Chemicals, Department of Veterinary Services, Department of Wildlife and National Parks and other NGOs such as Raptors Botswana to come together and find a long-lasting solution to address wildlife poisoning in Botswana. ‘Let’s have a strategy or a plan together to tackle wildlife poisoning,’ he stated

He also decried that there is gap in the availability of data about vulture poisoning or wildlife in general. ‘If we have a central point for data, it will help in terms of reporting and advocacy’, he stated

He added that the regional committee comprises of law enforcement officers such as BDF and Botswana police, village leadership such as Village Development Committee and Kgosi. ‘We need to join hand together and protect the wildlife we have as this will increase our profile for conservation and this alone enhances our visitation and boost our local economy,’ he noted

Kootshositse noted that Birdlife together with DWNP also addressed series of meeting in some villages in the Chobe region recently. The purpose of kgotla meetings was to raise awareness on the conservation and protection of vultures in Chobe West communities.

‘After realizing that vulture poisoning in the Chobe areas become frequent, we realise that we need to do something about it.  ‘We did a public awareness by addressing several kgotla meetings in some villages in the Chobe west,’ he stated

He noted that next year they are going to have another round of consultations around the Chobe areas and the approach is to engage the community into planning process. ‘Residents should be part of the plan of actions and we are working with farmers committee in the areas to address vulture poisoning in the area, ‘he added

He added that they have found out that some common reasons for poisoning wildlife are farmers targeting predators such as lions in retaliation to killing of their livestock. Another common incident cross border poaching in the Chobe area as poachers will kills an elephant and poison its carcass targeting vultures because of their aerial circling alerting authorities about poaching activities.

Kootshositse noted that in the last cases it was disheartening the incidents occurred three months apart. He added that for the first time they found that some of the body parts of some vultures were missing. He added harvesting of body parts of vultures is not a common practice in Botswana, although it is used in some parts of Africa. ‘We suspect that someone took advantage of the availability of carcasses and started harvesting their body parts,’

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Giant in the making: Everton Mlalazi

3rd February 2023

The music industry is at a point where artists are jostling for space because there are so many aspirants trying to get their big break, thus creating stiff competition.

In the music business it’s about talent and positioning. You need to be at the right place at the right time with the right people around you to propel you forward.
Against all odds, Everton Mlalazi has managed to takeover the gospel scene effortlessly.
To him, it’s more than just a breakthrough to stardom, but a passion as well as mission directly appointed by the Lord.

Within a short space of 2 years after having decided to persue a solo career, Mlalazi has already made it into international music scene, with his music receiving considerable play on several gospel television and radio stations in Botswana including other regional stations like Trace Africa, One Gospel, Metro FM in South Africa, Hope FM in Kenya and literally all broadcast stations in Zimbabwe.

It doesn’t only stop there, as the musician has already been nominated 2 times and 2 awards which are Bulawayo Arts Awards (BAA) best Male artists 2022, StarFM listerners Choice Award, Best Newcomer 2021 and ZIMA Best Contemporary Gospel 2022, MLA awards Best Male artist & Best Gospel Artist 2022.

Everton’s inspiration stems from his ultimate passion and desire to lead people into Godly ways and it seems it’s only getting started.
The man is a gospel artist to put on your radar.

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African countries call on WHO to increase funding

2nd February 2023

Minister of Health Dr Edwin Dikoloti says Africa member states call on World Health Organization (WHO) to ensure equitable resource allocation for 2024-2025. Dr Dikoloti was speaking this week at the WHO Executive Board Meeting in Geneva, Switzerland.

He said countries agreed that there is need to address the budget and funding imbalances by increasing the programme budget share of countries and regions to 75% for the next year.

“The proposed budget for 2024-2025 marks an important milestone as it is the first in Programme Budget in which country offices will be allocated more than half of the total budget for the biennium. We highly welcome this approach which will enable the organization to deliver on its mandate while fulfilling the expectations for transparency, efficiency and accountability.”

The Botswana Health Minister commended member states on the extension of the General Programme of Work (GPD 13) and the Secretariat work to monitor the progress towards the triple billion targets, and the health-related SDGs.

“We welcome the Director’s general proposed five priorities which have crystalized into the “five Ps” that are aligned with the GPW 13 extension. Impact can only be achieved through close coordination with, and support to national health authorities. As such, the strengthening of country offices is instrumental, with particular focus on strengthening national health systems and on promoting more equitable access to health services.”

According to Dr Dikoloti, the majority of countries with UHC index that is below the global median are in the WHO Africa region. “For that, we call on the WHO to enhance capacity at the regional and national levels in order to accelerate progress. Currently, the regional office needs both technical and financial support in order to effectively address and support country needs.”

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