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BDF hits at police over poaching incident

Botswana Defence Force (BDF) Director, Protocol and Public Affairs Colonel Tebo Dikole has this week slammed Botswana Police for talking and discussing BDF operational matters with the media and members of the public.

Dikole was referring to a new shooting incident that is reported to have occurred this week, where members of the BDF exchanged fire with poachers at Shaile. Asked to confirm nor deny whether the incident took place, Colonel Tebo Dikole said he cannot discuss BDF operational matters with members of the media or the general public.

“Such issues are very sensitive and can constitutes to national security if discussed with a third party. That police officer who was quoted, we do not know where he got that information. He is better placed to answer your questions,” said Dikole.  On Monday, March 16, it was reported that five suspected elephant poachers escaped following a fire exchange with members of Botswana Defence Force (BDF) anti- poaching team in the Shaile area of the Chobe National Park in the afternoon.

This follows another incident where a BDF officer and a poacher was killed when they exchanged fire at the Chief’s Island a few days back. In a twist of events, impeccable sources within the military told WeekendPost that the BDF soldiers were ambushed by poachers at their base and instead soldiers ran for their lives. “This is when the exchange took place in broad day light, the soldiers were not on patrol as it is reported,” said the source.  

Speaking to local media Assistant Superintendent Kenneth Chipisani who is the officer-in charge at the Narcotics, Fauna and Flora Investigations department in Kasane said no soldier in the BDF patrol team was hurt in the shoot-out.  He explained that on Monday at around 4 pm, members of the BDF anti-poaching patrolling team who were at Shaile had a sudden confrontation with the poachers and there was serious exchange of fire before the poachers escaped.

“Unfortunately, all the five poachers managed to escape. Again fortunately, none of our soldiers were injured,” he said. Assistant Superintendent Chipisani explained that they suspected that the poachers were from neighbouring countries of Namibia, Zimbabwe and Zambia.
Previously, WeekendPost inquired about the number of members of the Special Forces and Infantry Units currently deployed in the anti- poaching operations at Chief’s Island in the Okavango area. The BDF declined to comment on the matter since they considered it “operational matters that cannot be shared with the media and the public.” 

Dikole has however refuted reports that lapse in anti-poaching mission is a result of disgruntled members within the military.  “The BDF in the execution of its mission of defending Botswana’s Territorial Integrity, Sovereignty and National Interests is not driven by the profit or remuneration. All BDF members to include Special Forces performance hinges on one of our core value of ‘Duty’ which succinctly states that, ‘Duty is accomplishing all assigned tasks to the fullest of our ability’,” Colonel Dikole said.  

“The BDF wishes to underscore the fact that there is a marked difference between BDF members and mercenaries whose prime or sole motivation is private gain, whereas BDF members have been capacitated to put service before self as anything to the contrary would render such an individual not a member of the BDF in good standing”.

Dikole said the BDF continues to urge media houses not to mislead the public in the quest for a scoop on anti- poaching operations by attributing increased poaching to supposedly disgruntled BDF members. He said poaching of rhinos in many countries has spiked up because of the astronomically high returns on the value of the rhino horn which is alleged to be around sixty five dollars ($65 000) per kg in the illegal market.

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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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