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Teaching Service Consultative Council declared illegal

Minister Dow’s attitude throwing MoESD in disarray – BOFEPUSU

There is likelihood that teachers may not participate in this year’s school examinations including invigilation and marking, the Botswana Federation of Public Sector Unions (BOFEPUSU) has announced.

Approximately two months before the commencement of the 2015 school final examinations, the teachers and the Ministry of Education and Skills Development (MoESD) have not yet reached any agreement in terms of examination work compensation and let alone started negotiations on the matter and the teachers are threatening to boycott the job.

During a press conference in Gaborone this week, the Federation’s Secretary General, Tobokani Rari and his Deputy, Ketlhalefile Motshegwa suggested that teachers may even hold on to marks for practical subject until they are satisfactorily compensated for it.

‘’In the past when teachers participated in the examination process, they were merely being patriotic but it is now time that BEC engages teachers and negotiate for appropriate rates. If they do not do so, there will be a tussle,” Motshegwa explained.

According to the union, the examination duty is the responsibility of the Botswana Examinations Council (BEC), an organisation which is not an employer of teachers. Teachers are employed by the Directorate of Public Service Management through the MoESD.

“Just as the responsibility of conducting elections lies with the Independent Electoral Commission, the responsibility of running school examinations lies wholly with BEC,” Motshegwa added.

However the MoESD has been paying Millions of Pula towards compensating Teachers for this kind of job every year and the Ministry is actually in debt as it still owes some of the teachers for the services they rendered during the last examinations.

Previously the Ministry had made an interim arrangement where it negotiated and agreed with Teacher’s unions on the compensation rate before examinations started. The interim arrangement was done through the teaching service consultative council. But the new Minister, Unity Dow, who is a trained lawyer, is said to have declared the interim arrangement illegal and would not continue with it.

“When Mma Moitoi was the MoESD Minister and Muzila was the Permanent Secretary in the same Ministry, the unions and the Ministry met annually to negotiate the compensation rate and an agreement was signed. But when the learned fellow arrived, she said the interim arrangement was illegal,” explained BOFEPUSU’s President, Johannes Tshukudu.

The Unions says the decision by Dow to kill the consultative council has thrown the teaching service into a crisis and the coming examinations would be an example of the dire consequences of such a decision.

 “The attitude of the current Minister of Education cannot help resolve problems in that Ministry. She cannot manage the Education problems without involving the teachers,” added BOFEPUSU’s deputy Secretary General, Motshegwa.

Meanwhile the federation had written a letter to the Ministry demanding answers as to what is going to happen in the coming school final examinations which starts in October, 2015.

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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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