One of the leading technological institutions in the country, New Era College held its first graduation ceremony on Thursday April 16 2015, at the Gaborone International Convention Centre (GICC).
Termed the new kid on the block, the institution held their first graduation ceremony with more than one thousand students graduating from various programs ranging from Business to Telecommunications Systems at the ceremony themed: Developing Human Resources for the Transformation of Botswana.
Since its inception New Era College has distinguished itself as a pre-eminent institution for technological studies. The College is unique because it is one of the few tertiary education institutions that have chosen some of the most demanding and therefore very expensive programmes of study such as Engineering and Business.
As an institution of high learning, they took on the challenge of developing quality human resources to transform Botswana into a knowledge economy similar to Singapore or the Unite States of America.
While officiating at the event, the President of BOCCIM, Lekwalo Leta Mosienyane said that it was regrettable that Botswana’s global competitiveness ranking on Human Resources Development is not as it should be. He said this has weighed down the country’s development, forcing for skills to be sought from outside the country.
“We continue to experience a mismatch between the demand and supply of technical skills in the labour market. Some blame this on the fact that the supply of skills is not driven by demand from industry but on what institutions produce. BOCCIM will, together with other relevant stakeholders provide direction on industry needs,” he said.
He advised that the industry should come to the fore and present its requirements as well as implements the research, while academia should research the necessary innovations and that “Government as part of this trilogy, must facilitate the research with funding, policy formulation, regulation and monitoring”.
He called on New Era as a technical college accredited by the Botswana Qualifications Authority (BQA) should develop skills to promote formation of small and medium enterprises as part of a wider strategy to industrialise Botswana.
Mosienyane further advised the graduates to be custodians of their economy. He added that the expectation was that they help grow the economy by applying foresight and make the country significant Global player.
“As we approach another milestone of 2016, of becoming an educated and informed nation, your role as the youth of the country, becomes increasingly important. Today you leave this place with scarce skills. Put them to good use,” he advised.
While there is no hard-and-fast rule in politics, former Molepolole North Member of Parliament, Mohamed Khan says populism acts in the body politic have forced him to quit active partisan politics. He brands this ancient ascription of politics as fake and says it lowers the moral compass of the society.
Khan who finally tasted political victory in the 2014 elections after numerous failed attempts, has decided to leave the ‘dirty game’, and on his way out he characteristically lashed at the current political leaders; including his own party president, Advocate Duma Boko. “I arrived at this decision because I have noticed that there are no genuine politics and politicians. The current leaders, Boko and President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi are fake politicians who are just practicing populist politics to feed their egos,” he said.
Former Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) parliamentary hopeful, Lawrence Ookeditse has rejected the idea of taking up a crucial role in the Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) Central Committee following his arrival in the party this week. According to sources close to development, BPF power brokers are coaxing Ookeditse to take up the secretary general position, left vacant by death of Roseline Panzirah-Matshome in November 2020.
Ookeditse’s arrival at BPF is projected to cause conflicts, as some believe they are being overlooked, in favour of a new arrival. The former ruling party strategist has however ruled out the possibility of serving in the party central committee as secretary general, and committed that he will turn down the overture if availed to him by party leadership.
Ookeditse, nevertheless, has indicated that if offered another opportunity to serve in a different capacity, he will gladly accept. “I still need to learn the party, how it functions and all its structures; I must be guided, but given any responsibility I will serve the party as long as it is not the SG position.”
“I joined the BPF with a clear conscious, to further advance my voice and the interests of the constituents of Nata/Gweta which I believe the BDP is no longer capable to execute.” Ookeditse speaks of abject poverty in his constituency and prevalent unemployment among the youth, issues he hopes his new home will prioritise.
He dismissed further allegations that he resigned from the BDP because he was not rewarded for his efforts towards the 2019 general elections. After losing in the BDP primaries in 2018, Ookeditse said, he was offered a job in government but declined to take the post due to his political ambitions. Ookeditse stated that he rejected the offer because, working for government clashed with his political journey.
He insists there are many activists who are more deserving than him; he could have chosen to take up the opportunity that was before him but his conscious for the entire populace’s wellbeing held him back. Ookeditse said there many people in the party who also contributed towards party success, asserting that he only left the BDP because he was concerned about the greater good of the majority not individualism purposes.
According to observers, Ookeditse has been enticed by the prospects of contesting Nata/Gweta constituency in the 2024 general election, following the party’s impressive performance in the last general elections. Nata/Gweta which is a traditional BDP stronghold saw its numbers shrinking to a margin of 1568. BDP represented by Polson Majaga garnered 4754, while BPF which had fielded Joe Linga received 3186 with UDC coming a distant with 1442 votes.
There are reports that Linga will pave way for Ookeditse to contest the constituency in 2024 and the latter is upbeat about the prospects of being elected to parliament. Despite Ookeditse dismissing reports that he is eying the secretary general position, insiders argue that the position will be availed to him nevertheless.
Alternative favourite for the position is Vuyo Notha who is the party Deputy Secretary General. Notha has since assumed duties of the secretariat office on the interim basis. BPF politburo is expected to meet on 25th of January 2020, where the vacancy will be filled.
Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) big wigs have decided to cancel a retreat with the party legislators this weekend owing to increasing numbers of Covid-19 cases. The meeting was billed for this weekend at a place that was to be confirmed, however a communique from the party this past Tuesday reversed the highly anticipated meeting.
“We received a communication this week that the meeting will not go as planned because of rapid spread of Covid-19,” one member of the party Central Committee confirmed to this publication. The gathering was to follow the first of its kind held late last year at party Treasurer Satar Dada’s place.