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400 employees retained at BCL

Following the termination of employment for over 4000 BCL mine workers last month, Nigel Dixon-Warren, the provisional liquidator, tasked with the safe and proper dissolution of BCL Group has this week announced the reinstatement of 400 employees.

Dixon Warren indicated that the retained workers will remain onsite undertaking the care and maintenance of the mine shafts, equipment and the smelter. He further revealed that the 400 workers will remain employed by BCL limited until a conclusion is reached on the future of the two mines, being Tati Nickel and BCL Shafts. The maintenance process involves safe dewatering of the mine underground shafts and high level management of environmental risks.

“Care and maintenance is a pivotal undertaking in the liquidation process of a complex and large scale industrial company like BCL,” noted Dixon-Warren. Information gathered by this publication reveals that a significant portion of the temporarily hired employees will be tasked mainly with maintenance of the smelter, ore processing plant and equipment and most importantly securing the mine assets and the whole site.

According to a source who has been working closely with the liquidator, Dixon-Warren has solicited a support team which includes workers from the human resources department, finance, IT and the BCL Mine Hospital.
“The liquidation process is a very complex and tedious engagement that requires full time support staff, thus various workers from a number of departments have been rehired to provide additional support to the dissolution process which involves,  valuing of company properties  and huge financial paperwork,’’ said a source who preferred anonymity.

The 400 workers received their new offer letters under a totally new contract on Monday immediately after dismissal of thousands of others. It is unclear whether the employees include the mine top brass but WeekendPost has it on good authority that executive management are called from time to time to provide and hand over required company assets and paperwork. The rehiring of the 400 BCL workers comes after 60 support members were re-hired by the liquidator at BCL subsidiary, Tati Nickel weeks ago to provide similar support.

It is understood that the liquidator is dealing with more pressing issues of creditors, debtors and suitors’ as well as financial reconciliation of the Group treasury figures. Sources close to the liquidation process have revealed that the liquidator is having a hard time with the process as mismanagement of funds and unaccounted exit monies are uncovered.

Meanwhile the government has committed P60 million monthly to resource mainly the care and maintenance of the BCL operations. It is believed that the mine will soon be reopened under new ownership. Minister of Minerals, Green Technology and Energy Security, Sadique Kebonang, went on record saying that there are several companies already expressing interest to buy the mine.

Possible attractive assets owned by BCL limited are the Smelter which was recently refurbished at a cost of over P700 million. The BCL copper-nickel smelter is said to be the largest and most complex in the world by capacity. The smelter will be used to process ore from outside Botswana and BCL operations under the new expected ownership, post February, should Dixon-Warren recommend volubility of BCL and any investor interested.

Mining experts have revealed that BCL could still be profitable under Selkirk resource mining and a number of hidden shafts which would require more advanced technology to unearth millions of business sensible proceeds.  Dixon-Warren of KPMG has been given a four month mandate to determine and advice the sole shareholder being the Government of Botswana on whether to reopen the mine under restructured business model or sell it to private investors or completely shut down the mine.BCL limited was placed on provisional liquidation through the High Court of Botswana about a month ago after Government announced its inability to pay its P7.8 Billion debt.

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6th February 2023

After falling to close the gap on Arsenal by losing to a record breaking goal by Kane at the Tottenham stadium.Manchester City now find themselves being charged by the Premier League with more than 100 breaches of its financial rules following a four-year investigation.

According to BBC , it has referred the club to an independent commission over alleged rule breaches between 2009 and 2018 , and also that Man-city has not been co-operating since the investigation which started in 2018 .

BBC further states that The commission can impose punishment including a fine , points deduction and expelling the club from the Premier league.

The alleged breaches include ,  breaching rules for requiring full details of manager remuneration,from 2009-2010, to 2012-2013 seasons when Roberto Mancini was in charge . Also player remuneration between 2010-2011 and 2015-2016.

The Premier league stated that City breached rules related to UEFA regulations , including Financial Fair Play , from 2013-2014 to 2017-2018 ,as well as Premier League rules on profitability and sustainability from 2014-2016 to 2017-2018

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South Korean Embassy aids students living with disabilities

6th February 2023

South Korean Ambassador in South Africa has donated e-learning equipment through Botswana Red Cross Society (BRCS) to Tlamelong Rehabilitation Centre in Tlokweng recently, in a bid to fine tune the student’s textile skills.  

When talking at the handing over ceremony, Chull-Joo Park, said they agreed with BRCS to give out e-learning equipment to better the training skills of students living with disabilities.

“With the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) equipment and job training skills, we will be able to help the students living with disabilities to do e-learning and to better their education and job training,” said Chull-Joo Park.

It was revealed that the South Korean Embassy approached BRCS with the intent to donate equipment and educational material that includes an embroidery machine, photo copier machine, tablets and interactive boards to be utilized by the trainees.

The industrial printer is a machine that works with embroidery machine to print designs for clothing and it will enable the learners to have more material available to them to facilitate learning.

Through this embroidery machine, students will be exposed to better technologies which ultimately improve the quality of materials they produce. It will also allow students to learn business skills and run profitable ventures.

Smart board gadgets will provide the students with an elevated learning process to be fostered by e-learning. The gadgets provide a more visual element to the learning process, which in turn improves learner mental retention.

Tlamelong Rehabilitation serves the marginalized and underserved less privileged persons living with disability in Botswana. The center offers boarding services, vocational training, social services, physiotherapy and rehabilitation services for young people living disabilities aged 18-35 from across the country over a period of two (2) years per cohort which has a maximum intake capacity of 35. BRCS through International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) have managed to create great working synergy with the South Korean Embassy in Pretoria based in South Africa to support or augment the National Society’s Rehabilitation Centre’s learning challenges.

For his part, BRSC Secretary General Kutlwano Mokokomani said they are delighted to convey their gratitude as BRSC to the South Korean Embassy for donation and they look forward to an enduring partnership for such worthy causes.

“South Korean Embassy’s great gesture will enable trainees to thrive, to fulfil their dreams to become a reality as this equipments will go a long way in creating great impact in the lives of trainees and their families. We wish to convey our sincere gratitude to the South Korean Embassy for their noble gesture of donating the E-learning equipments.”

BRCS offers rehabilitation services spread across three (3) areas in Botswana being Sefhare Stimulation center in Sefhare, Tshimologo stimulation center in Francistown and Tlamelong rehabilitation center in Tlokweng.

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DIS alleges plot to kill Masisi hatched in South Africa

6th February 2023

A dispute is brewing between Botswana and South Africa intelligence agencies over alleged mercenary training camps discovered in South Africa by the Directorate of Intelligence and Security (DIS). 

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