As you witnessed in the theatrical acts, the BTCL journey has been long. We have a rich heritage and tradition which makes us one of the most enduring local brands in our industry.
When Michael Porter one of the demi gods of competitive advantage and branding was asked what defines a leading brand his response was simple – “the ability to constantly recreate and redefine yourself in line with market dynamics.”
More than three decades ago through the BTC Act of 1980, this Company was born and I am proud to say BTCL is still going strong and remains commercial viable.
Some would argue that the establishment of BTC was the beginning of a journey into a knowledge-based economy.
Our legacy as the only truly local brand is testament to the excellence and ingenuity that prevails among Batswana as a people.
As Batswana, you built a legacy and for more than 30 years BTC has been an economic player, an innovator, an enabler towards the local empowerment drive.
Where we are
11. BTCL listing on the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) was a watershed moment in the economic inclusion narrative of Botswana. Through Botswana’s first major privatization of a public asset, over fifty thousand Batswana took up the Offer to purchase and became a part of this great legacy.
12. The BTCL story is a story about the future. Through BTCL, I believe Batswana have taken the first steps into the world of stocks and shareholding increasing direct citizen participation in the ownership of national assets.
13. The unprecedented uptake of BTCL shares is a strong confirmation that citizens and citizen owned companies have hope in the future of BTCL, a truly made in Botswana brand.
14. Director of Ceremony, we have a solid strategy underpinned by a history of consistently returning great value to shareholders.
15 .Our journey is blending a strong heritage and the new energy, an ambition to ensure that the business’ new legacy is a dynamic, and evolving drive that takes stock of the current, uses research and development to provide the best solutions for our customers and stakeholders.
16. The future is not just service delivery; it is creating opportunities as we marshal a new brand experience. We have no intention of resting on our laurels or basking in our previous glory.
17. As we launch a new brand and usher in the new era our sleeves are rolled up. It’s the beginning of an efficient service delivery premised on a performance-driven culture.
18. We have the expertise, capital, the support and drive to usher Botswana into knowledge based economy and open gateways of communication to the rest of the world upon which many industries were built.
19. Unlike any other player in the market our value proposition involves creating partnerships that deliver shareholder value.
20. We have identified strategic partners who will not only enhance innovation for our product offerings but will in the process provide Batswana with the best solutions creating new capabilities and industries.
21. Furthermore, ladies and gentlemen, BTCL structures and fundamentals are robust. As a consistently profitable company BTCL will continue to capitalise on its unique market positioning.
22. Bagaetsho, BTCL has a positive outlook and expects to remain profitable in the future as it focuses on five key strategic areas. First and foremost, BTCL will focus on further growing its mobile business and market share from a revenue and subscriber perspective.
23. The Corporation, will also ride on its robust and reliable network that many businesses including Government rely on to run their business to promote and increase uptake of its data and broadband services.
24 We will continue to strive for world class customer service excellence to ensure that customers are happy and put together a cost reduction plan so that all employees know what to do to reduce costs while delivering excellent service.
25. Going forward, we will also ensure that our assets and technology generate value for the company. We are a strong economic player mindful of communities in which we operate. We dare to walk the talk and transverse where others dread. That’s our brand promise, that’s our DNA.
26. In conclusion, as we move towards a monolithic brand, I have absolute faith that our new identity, our fresh look and style will reflect the new energy. The new symbol that has been revealed to you is the future of telecommunications in Botswana.
27 As a private company BTCL remains solid and is on course to be number one. We are a well-resourced and adequately capitalised company with a heritage of returning value to the shareholder.
28 . Let me invite you to join us on the journey to the future. We are truly on course to be a one stop telecommunication shop providing seamless service to our stakeholders.
29 .Today as two home-made successful brands beMOBILE and BTC become one monolithic brand, a path to a new future has been created.
30. To me this goes beyond the two brands, it is us coming together to ensure that we live up to the new brand promise and I invite you to a better future.
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 reachingÂ WeekendPostÂ 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 publicationâ€™s queries, Permanent Secretary to the Office of the President Emma Peloetletse said, â€śas 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,â€ť 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.
â€śIt is heartbreaking that at this time the investigations have not been completed,â€ť he toldÂ WeekendPost, adding that â€śwhen a person is suspended, they get their salary fully without fail until the matter is resolvedâ€ť.
Makgophe, Katlholo and Kgothane are the three most high-ranking government officials that are under interdiction.
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.