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Arafat Khan to invite Malema into the country, again

Botswana National Front’s (BNF), Secretary General Arafat Khan


Botswana National Front’s (BNF) firebrand Secretary General Arafat Khan has revealed that he once more intends to invite South African Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader, Julius Malema into the country.

Khan says the reason for his intent is to fulfil a pledge he made to his Borakalalo ward electorate to bring in the EFF Commander In Chief (CIC) before the 2014 general election, where Malema and his clique of EFF top brass were slapped with Visa requirements that effectively obstructed their visit into the country.

Malema was barred from coming into the country on the 12th of September 2014, a day before he was scheduled to publicly endorse Khan in Borakalalo despite having a diplomatic passport as a South African Member of Parliament, and told to apply again or appeal the snub after 8 months.

Khan described the requirement as, “an unreasonable and demeaning scheme that targets international friends of opposition (parties) requiring they awfully forfeit their fate to government in order to be granted entry into the country.”  

Khan also assures that they come armed with a new tack after the South African local elections and should they encounter the might of the system’s resistance, he will seek recourse with the courts of law to compel the immigration department to reveal reasons for the barring of individuals associated with opposition parties.

Khan also sheds light on his notorious close association with the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) Secretary General Botsalo Ntuane, saying that they have been friends for so long and he now considers him “a dear brother.”He also continues that their friendship of 10 years has allowed them opportunity to know each other’s true political convictions adding, “He knows me as much as I know him and we do not even talk about recruiting each other but banter over side-line issues such as football.”

He also goes on to say that contrary to popular belief he is not any close to BNF and Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) leader Duma Boko. This is despite Khan remaining the only council candidate who has had his municipal bid launched by the party president in the run up to the 2014 general election. Boko also went on to helm the guest speakership task at his subsequent electoral victory festivity at his ward in May 2015. He continues to state that he does not even have Boko’s mobile contacts and neither thinks the popular opposition leader has his.

Khan says that he simply defends Boko the same way he has always done with former BNF leader Otsweletse Moupo. He continues to say that even though he has his own political differences with Boko he can never in a million years be seen at odds or contradicting him on public fora. He also in a momentary sign of wonder states that, “I think Boko has done well for the movement by bringing the fractured opposition movements together and I sincerely think he deserves re-election because he currently remains the only suitable leader to lead the movement.

He also reasons that it is the first time BNF gets to enjoy unbridled stability in a long time and with the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) inside the opposition bloc there remains little doubt that the establishment will be toppled in 2019.

Khan also sheds light on the late Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) leader Gomolemo Motswaledi describing him as “a dear friend of mine and a very unassuming politician.”

He says he first came across the expressive and likeable BMD leader in 2003 at a Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) rally in Molepolole North and in no time they had befriended each other. Motswaledi more or less attained the status of martyrdom in the theatre of opposition politics and among the peasantry following his death 2 months before the 2014 general election in a freak automobile accident in the locality of Pitsane in Borolong.

Khan continues to describe him as a highly principled politico who sacrificed a lot for his political convictions and says he remains absolutely won over, without a shadow of doubt in his mind that Motswaledi never harboured any notion of retracing his steps back to the BDP which he once served as secretary general before being expelled. He also says that BNF founder Dr Kenneth Koma must be smiling in his grave because he has always been an ardent agitator of opposition unity in the country.

Khan also says that he is exiting youth league politics with a clear conscience to focus on his ward, his life and business and will also not be contesting any central committee position in the coming elective congress. He also denies having his hand pulling the strings of youth politics he claims to be leaving behind, in bid to influence his successive youth league leadership. Khan denies knowing if former student leader Kago Mokotedi will be contesting the BNF youth league presidency since the nomination process is not yet open, but swiftly moves to describe Mokotedi as a one of the most outstanding youth leaders of his life and his party.

Khan declares that, “I have not yet endorsed anyone’s candidacy and at present I’m not sure if I will, but if I do I will endorse someone with the right talent and capabilities to catapult UDC to greater heights.

The fire-breathing councillor has thus far been involved in over 30 acts of philanthropy in his ward including monetary, equipment and clothing donations.

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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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