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Mogae appointed Moitoi AU chair bid campaigner

Former president of Botswana, Festus Mogae

Immediate former president, Festus Mogae has been appointed as a Special Envoy to campaign for Botswana candidate Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi in her run for the position of chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission.

Moitoi, who is also the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC)roped in the former president in her campaign following developments that she is facing stiff competition from other contestants and African equivalents.

Botswana Ambassador to Ethiopia and Permanent Representative of the Republic of Botswana to the African Union, Mmamosadinyana Molefe confirmed Mogae’s engagement in Moitoi’s campaign.

“Yes it is true that Mogae has been appointed to help campaign for Moitoi,” Molefe told WeekendPost in a telephonic interview this week. The Addis Ababa based plenipotentiary said Mogae was roped-in so that he can talk to and persuade high level people and countries to vote for the Botswana candidate.

Molefe stated that Mogae has already started executing his mandate to canvass for votes for Moitoi. As a Botswana diplomat she also is assisting Moitoi in the campaign at Ethiopia where the AU headquarters is located.

The former Botswana president is brought in at a time international media reports are abound that all the current candidates contesting for the AU chair portfolio may be some way below par and that moves are afoot to find someone better.

Unconfirmed reports further indicate that the former Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete and current Algerian Foreign Minister Ramtane Lamamra are being considered.

In addition to Botswana candidate Moitoi, aged 65, who was endorsed by Southern African Development Community (SADC) earlier this year, are other candidates including Specioza Kazibwe, 60, who hails from the East African country of Uganda and Agapito Mokuy, 51, from Equatorial Guinea located in Central Africa.

Both Moitoi and Mokuy are currently serving as Foreign Affairs ministers in their respective countries, while Kazibwe has prior operated at a level of a Vice president at his country (Uganda).

In the campaign it appears it’s not smooth sailing for Botswana as the issue of its rooftop diplomacy is proving to backfire. The ‘insignificant’ landlocked country with a population of 2 million has been accused of punching above its weight.

According to eNCA: “SADC is arguing that it should get the chair because Dlamini-Zuma will not be serving a second term. But South African official sources say they fear Venson-Moitoi will not win because the rest of Africa does not like Botswana’s foreign policy. This includes its firm support for the International Criminal Court, which the AU has rejected as biased towards Africa.”

Apart from Botswana nominee, it said both Mokuy and Kazibwe are also not seen as serious contenders. In particular, Mokuy is indicted because of her country’s human rights record (Equatorial Guinea) and Kazibwe is seen as just a “not strong enough” candidate.

Speaking to WeekendPost from Rwanda where she is currently canvassing for votes, the Serowe South law maker and Botswana candidate for Africa’s highest position rubbed off reports that they are somehow not fit enough for the portfolio.

“Am not bothered by those reports as it’s their opinions and they are entitled to it,” she pointed out in a telephonic interview with this publication. According to Moitoi, the contest is set and they are busy campaigning, “everything is just going according to plan,” she asserted with much confidence.

The Botswana ambassador to Ethiopia Molefe also echoed Moitoi’s sentiments, “Our campaign as a country is going well.” She added that they had the presence of Minister Moitoi “on Monday this week at Ethiopia and the meeting was successful as high placed people from other countries came in large numbers to hear Botswana candidate’s message of the campaign” adding that she believes they will lend them support at the elections. “The race is ongoing and there is no problem at all,” she insisted to this publication.  

The elections for AU chairperson will be held during the 27th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the AU, which is scheduled to take place from July 17-18 in the Rwandan capital, Kigali.

The new candidate will replace Dr.Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma who is not seeking re-election after serving for 4 years since July 2012. She took over from Dr Jean Ping (2008 to 2012)who hailed from Gabon.

Mali’s former President Alpha Oumar Konaré also served in the position between September 2003 and February 2008 and succeeded Mr Amara Essy of Ivory Coast (2002) who reigned as the Interim Chair.

As Chief Executive of the Commission, the AU chairperson runs a continental commission that includes a Deputy Chairperson and eight commissioners of Peace and Security, Political Affairs, Trade and Industry, Infrastructure and Energy, Social Affairs, Rural Economy and Agriculture, Human Resources, Science and Technology and Economic Affairs.

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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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