Republic of Botswana (6/11/05)
TAUTONA TIMES no 39 of 2005
The Weekly Electronic Press Circular of the Office of the President
"I am pleased to report that, addition to the DMB - Star Group, and the other three already locally established diamond cutting and polishing companies - Diarough (Teemane), Schacter & Namdar and Eurostar, there are also others in the industry who are showing active interest in setting up in Botswana. As the largest diamond producer by value we are of course eager to encourage this trend with the important proviso that those companies who do locate here must bring with them the necessary experience, human and technical resources, and above all integrity." - H.E. President Mogae [D1]
A. Nation Statements
B. The Week that was
C. November Press Schedule
D. Statements by H.E. the President at:
1) 2/11/05: DMB/Star Diamond Group Silver Jubilee
2) 4/11/05: Accepting the Letters of Credence from the incoming High Commissioners of the United Kingdom, Sierra Leone and Malawi and the Ambassador of Brazil, along with the diplomat's statements.
E. OP Press Office Forwarding:
1) 2/11/05: Business and Economic Advisory Council meets
2) 3/11/05: Remarks by High Commissioner Oliphant on the presentation of her credentials to H.E. Zambian President Mwanawasa, S.C.
3) Additional notes and forwarding.
F. Botswana in the Global Media, October 2005
A. Nation Statements
Welcome to this week's edition, which comes to you on the eve of the opening of the Second Session of the Ninth Parliament. As is customary on such annual occasions, H.E. the President will address the House on the State of the Nation. The full text of his address, to be televised live on BTV, will be included in our next edition.
This week's edition features the remarks of the incoming High Commissioners and Ambassadors of the United Kingdom, Brazil, Sierra Leone, and Malawi, as well as H.E. the President's own statements. [D2a-d].
Among the remarks, the incoming British High Commissioner assured the President "that the United Kingdom Government fully shares your concern about the risk of any action that might lead to a stigmatisation of diamonds internationally." The new Brazilian Ambassador set as his priority building on the goodwill generated by President Mogae's July State Visit so that "the Framework of Cooperation Agreement which our two countries signed during the State Visit, is implemented for our mutual benefit."
The High Commissioner of the Republic of Sierra Leone expressed his own personal pleasure at being "my country's first High Commissioner to the Republic of Botswana, a country which is considered as a model for democracy and good governance and the least corrupt country in Africa." For his part, Malawian High Commissioner noted that: "Like Botswana, Malawi has many places of tourist attraction and an exchange of information on the development of the tourism industry would be of immense value."
In other news this Office is pleased to take note that Dr. Ernest Darkoh has been featured among 18 Global Health Heroes in the cover story of the latest edition of Time Magazine, for his local efforts to promote HIV testing.
- Dr. Jeff Ramsay, Press Secretary to the President (6/11/05)
Contacts: Office Telephone: (267) 3975154 & Facsimile: (267) 3902795.
Cell: (267) 71318598. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
B. November Press Schedule:
As always the events listed below, which represent only those parts of H.E. the President's schedule open in whole or part to press coverage, are subject to change. When possible and necessary, updates will be forwarded. Members of the Press are also encouraged to contact the sponsors of the various events listed below for further programme details and possible updates.
Monday (7/11/05): In the afternoon, from 14:00, H.E. the President will attend the opening of the second session of the Ninth Parliament, where he will deliver the annual State of the Nation Address.
Thursday (10/11/05): During the morning, from 9:00, the President will be in Sebina, where he will receive on behalf of the National AIDS Coordinating Agency a cheque from Metsef and the Banner Group of retail companies. In the evening, at 19:30 am, he is expected to attend the Botswana Society AGM at the Botswana Accountancy College.
Saturday (12/11/05): In the morning H.E. the President is expected to join mourners at the funeral of the late Kgosi Moshibidu Gaborone of Batlokwa. In the evening H.E. the President will attend the Law Society and Administration of Justice Dinner.
Monday (14/11/05): At noon, at the Office of the President, H.E. the President will receive a courtesy call from the retiring CEO of Merck Company, Mr. Raymond Gilmartin.
Wednesday (16/11/05): In the afternoon, at 15:00, Office of the President, H.E. the President is scheduled to meet with the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand.
Thursday (17/11/05): In the morning, from 8:00, H.E. the President will chair a meeting of the High Level Consultative Council at the Pavilion, Fairground Holdings.
Saturday (19/11/05): During the day, H.E. the President will welcome and hold talks with the Chinese Vice Premier Huang Ju, who will be in Botswana for the three day official visit. In the morning, the President is also scheduled to attend the annual Council Meeting of the Botswana Scout Association. In the evening, from 19:00, he will attend the BOCCIM Annual Gala Dinner at the GICC.
Friday (25/11/05): In the morning H.E. the President will chair a meeting of the National AIDS Council.
Wednesday (30/11/05): In the evening, H.E. the President will attend a dinner in honour of the President and CEO of the Baylor College of Medicine, Dr. Peter G. Trebler.
Thursday (1/12/05): H.E. the President is expected to addend the World AIDS Day Observance in Letlakane.
Also during the month, H.H. the Vice President will be attending on H.E. the President's behalf the UN World Summit on Information Society in Tunis (16-18/11/05) and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Malta (25-28/11/05).
C. OP Press opportunities for the week ending 5/11/05:
Tuesday (1/11/05): In the afternoon, at the Office of the President, there was a cheque presentation towards the Masiele Trust Fund from Choppies Super Stores.
Wednesday (2/11/05): In the afternoon H.E. the President toured the expanded and upgraded DMB-Star Diamond Group Diamond Cutting and Polishing factory in Gaborone. In the evening he attended and addressed the DMB Silver Jubilee reception [D1].
Friday (4/11/05): During the afternoon, H.E. the President received the credentials of the incoming High Commissioners of the United Kingdom, Sierra Leone and Malawi, and the Ambassador of Brazil [D2]. In the evening he attended the annual Kalahari Conservation Society Dinner.
Saturday (5/11/05): During the day, H.E. the President toured the Gweta Constituency.
D 1) REMARKS BY HIS EXCELLENCY MR. FESTUS G. MOGAE, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF BOTSWANA ON THE OCCASION OF DIAMOND MANUFACTURING BOTSWANA (Pty) Ltd. 25th ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION, Gaborone (2/11/05).
Director of Ceremonies,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
1. It is a pleasure for me to be able to participate in this milestone event in the development of our local diamond cutting and polishing industry.
2. Today is a milestone for two reasons. On one hand, we are this evening marking a quarter century of diamond cutting and polishing in Botswana. And, on the other hand, we earlier this afternoon inaugurated the new Diamond Manufacturing Botswana (DMB) factory here in Gaborone, which should ensure a significant expansion of its operations.
3. Back in 1980, DMB was the first company to be granted a local gem cutting licence. It was followed by such other pioneers as the original Teemane factory in Serowe and the Lazare Kaplan (now Schacter and Namdar) plant in Molepolole.
4. Of course, until recently, the output of each of these operations was relatively modest. But, as a result of both the ongoing restructuring in the global diamond market, and technological transformation in the way that diamonds are being cut and polished, new opportunities for the local beneficiation are now emerging.
5. In this context, I am further encouraged by the fact that DMB has secured a major international partner to increase its own competitiveness. The entry of the Star Diamond Group into our market, as the major shareholder in DMB last year, was yet another milestone in the diversification of our diamond industry.
6. Over the past five decades, the Star Group has successfully established itself as a major global player in both the production and marketing of diamonds. In this respect, I am informed that its interests can now be found in virtually all aspects of the industry from mining, to distribution of rough through a diversified client network, to cutting and polishing to jewellery manufacturing and branding.
7. The Star Diamond Group, moreover, has evolved interests beyond diamonds, though that remains its core business. Over the years it has also diversified into such other activities as leisure and sports, biotechnology and agriculture.
8. Regarding the latter, I am further informed that the company has recently completed a feasibility study for a dairy farming project near Lobatse. I can only hope that this is a harbinger for further investment.
9. As I said, today is a dual celebration in that besides being DMB's Silver Jubilee we have inaugurated a new cutting and polishing factory, which represents a capital investment of about one and a half million U.S. dollars, or nearly seven million pula. We are assured that the resulting facility has been designed for optimal workflow, efficiency and productivity. To further ensure that this occurs additional investment is being made in the area of human resource development. Whereas the old DMB had an average employment level of less than 100, the new plant is expected to employ between 250 and 300 workers.
10. Ladies and Gentlemen, to take full advantage of the changes in the diamond industry, of which I have already alluded, we are in the process of establishing the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) Botswana, which will sort, value and market all of Debswana's diamonds. DTC Botswana will also sell rough diamonds to local cutting and polishing factories through the sight system.
11. I am pleased to report that, addition to the DMB - Star Group, and the other three already locally established diamond cutting and polishing companies - Diarough (Teemane), Schacter & Namdar and Eurostar, there are also others in the industry who are showing active interest in setting up in Botswana. As the largest diamond producer by value we are of course eager to encourage this trend with the important proviso that those companies who do locate here must bring with them the necessary experience, human and technical resources, and above all integrity.
12. Ladies and Gentlemen, in conclusion let me take this opportunity to wish Diamond Manufacturing Botswana many more years of success. Pula!
D 2) Statements by H.E. the President accepting the Letters of Credence from the incoming High Commissioners of the United Kingdom, Sierra Leone and Malawi and the Ambassador of Brazil, along with the diplomat's statements (4/11/05).
Below please find copies of the full remarks given during Friday afternoon's credentials programme a State House by H.E. the President and each of the incoming diplomats of: a) The United Kingdom, b) Brazil, c) Sierra Leone, and d) Malawi.
D2a) United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
ADDRESS BY HIS EXCELLENCY MR. FESTUS G. MOGAE, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF BOTSWANA, ACCEPTING THE LETTERS OF CREDENCE OF THE HIGH COMMISSIONER DESIGNATE OF BRITAIN, MR. FRANK MARTIN (4/11/05)
1. Your Excellency, I am very pleased to accept the letters by which Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second has appointed you as British High Commissioner to Botswana. I also accept the Letters of Recall of your predecessor.
2. As you rightly pointed out, the United Kingdom and Botswana have longstanding friendship. Your appointment is therefore yet another sign of your country's determination to maintain and promote our bilateral relations. Please convey our gratitude to your Government for its friendship and solidarity.
3. Your Excellency, I am very grateful to you for acknowledging Botswana's tradition of democracy and observance of the rule of law. Let me assure you that democracy will, as it has for generations, remain part of Botswana's value system. We are firmly convinced that the modest economic strides we have made since our independence would not have been possible without the peace and stability that have been sustained by our adherence to democracy.
4. Britain has supported our development efforts in various fields various ways such as grants, loans some of which were later converted to grants, and through multi-lateral programs, amongst others. Let me therefore take this opportunity to thank the Government and people of Britain for the development assistance we receive from your country.
5. You have, rightly so, outlined some of the development challenges we still face as a nation. Amongst these are the fight against HIV/AIDS, economic diversification, human resource development, creation of employment opportunities and poverty alleviation. We therefore appeal to your country to continue its much needed support in resolving the challenges I have outlined.
6. Your Excellency, our substantial economic strides since independence have led even some of our closest friends to conclude that Botswana is no longer in need of development assistance. I wish to emphasize that by all accounts we are still a developing country that is in need of support.
7. Major challenges such as the fight against HIV/AIDS have, for example, compelled us to divert resources away from development projects. In addition, our narrow based and diamond - dependent economy needs to be diversified if we are to achieve sustainable development.
8. We therefore count on your personal support, as well as the support of your country, in ensuring that Botswana continues to benefit from all the assistance programs that are meant for developing countries. It is only through sustained development that Botswana can consolidate the peace, democracy and stability that we have enjoyed since our independence.
9. Your Excellency, we have witnessed with deep admiration, the leadership role and commitment that Britain has devoted towards the development of African and other Third World countries. Through the Commission for Africa, which we were proud to be members of, the European Union and the G8, your country has ensured that Africa's development is given the necessary priority. Please convey our gratitude to the Rt. Honourable Prime Minister Mr. Tony Blair and his Government colleagues, for their commitment to Africa's development.
10. I am grateful to you, High Commissioner, for assuring us that you will give priority attention towards the establishment of closer links between Botswana and British business enterprises. We consider both the role of the private sector and access to the markets of developed countries to be of crucial importance to our development efforts. You will, in this respect, be pleased to know that access of Botswana's beef to the United Kingdom and European Union markets has developed our beef industry into one of the best on the African continent. We will remain indebted to your country for sponsoring the access of Botswana's beef to the European Union market.
11. Your Excellency, let me once again welcome you to Botswana. I wish you a pleasant and rewarding stay.
Remarks by British High Commissioner Mr. Frank Martin, on the occasion of the Presentation of his credentials to H.E. President Mogae:
1. Your Excellency, I have the honour to present to you the Letter of commission from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, appointing me as British High Commissioner to the Republic of Botswana, together with the Letter notifying the Recall of my predecessor.
2. May I take this opportunity to convey to Your Excellency greetings and best wishes from Her Majesty the Queen.
3. The Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary, Jack Straw, and the International Development Secretary, Hillary Benn, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister for African, Lord Triesman, also send you, and your Government and people of Botswana, the warmest regard and respects.
4. It is a great honour for me to represent the Government and people of the United Kingdom here in Botswana. It is also a great personal pleasure to have the opportunity to live in Botswana, and learn more about the people, the history and the culture of this beautiful country.
5. The United Kingdom and Botswana enjoy a longstanding friendship based on mutual respect and cooperation. My Government recognizes that Botswana's remarkable economic development flows from a deep rooted regard for the fundamentals of democracy and the rule of law. Botswana is an inspiring example, within the region and beyond, of the benefits of stability, transparency and prudence. Botswana is a voice of reason, whose views on issues of mutual concern are sought and welcomed.
6. The Prime Minister, Tony Blair, has made Africa a high personal and government priority, and has already demonstrated strong support through the Commission on Africa. The United Kingdom Government's efforts have already started to make good progress. Under our Presidency, we managed a good outcome at this year's G8 Summit, which fully endorsed our proposals for debt relief. We will continue working closely with progressive leaders in Africa to promote more actively the interests of the continent. We appreciate fully Botswana's active engagement in taking forward this agenda. In particular your personal support and the efforts of the Governor of the Bank of Botswana have contributed greatly to the final report. I for my part, loo forward to developing with you and your Ministers an active dialogue aimed at advancing this agenda.
7. The Commission for Africa report has also contributed and complemented the UN Millennium Development Goals, which were discussed at the Millennium Review Summit in September. Your remarks at the UN General Assembly touched on the challenges faced by middle income countries, such as Botswana. The United Kingdom Government recognizes fully the challenges of HIV/AIDS. We commend the efforts being made by your Government, with your personal leadership, to contain the pandemic, and to treat, with all due care and sensitivity, those already afflicted. Let me assure you that the United Kingdom Government will continue to provide support to Botswana through the Department for International Development's regional HIV/AIDS and Trade programmes and through the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's small project scheme.
8. The G8 initiative on debt relief, although primarily targeted at Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC), should through the additional loans agreed with the World Bank and the African Development Bank benefit non-HIPC countries. This will have a positive knock-on effect throughout the continent.
9. We also recognize the key contribution made by diamonds, to Botswana's past and future development, but more critically in the fight against HIV/AIDS. Let me assure you that the United Kingdom Government fully shares your concern about the risk of any action that might lead to a stigmatisation of diamonds internationally. We value highly the positive contribution made by Botswana to the Kimberly Process, to establish an international certification scheme to protect the interests of legitimate diamond producers like Botswana, whilst restricting the possibility of other diamonds being used to sustain conflict in Africa.
10. Although diamonds seem likely to remain the bedrock of Botswana economic development in the foreseeable future, the United Kingdom recognizes the importance given by Botswana to diversifying the economy and to expanding employment opportunities especially for young people. We also recognize the excellent opportunities Botswana offers for investment. In this regard, I will make every effort to promote closer and more effective links between trade and business enterprises in the United Kingdom and Botswana.
11. As UK Special Representative to the Southern African Development Community, I also look forward to working closely with the newly appointed Executive Secretary and his staff to promote closer regional stability, integration and development. The United Kingdom Government through the Department of International Development will continue to provide technical assistance to the HIV/AIDS Unit of the Social and Human Development and Special Programmes Directorate and to the Trade, Industry, Finance and Investment Directorates. As the incoming chair to the SADC Secretariat, I know that Botswana shares the vision of a stronger and more effective Community.
12. The United Kingdom and Botswana share many common values and priorities. I will do my best to ensure that our friendship continues, and will look for new opportunities to strengthen our relations further. In this endeavour, the High Commission will work in close partnership, not only with the Department of International Development and the British Council, but also with the Government of Botswana and representatives of business and civil society. I look forward immensely to this challenge and opportunity.
D2b) Federal Republic of Brazil
ADDRESS BY HIS EXCELLENCY MR. FESTUS G. MOGAE, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF BOTSWANA, ACCEPTING THE LETTERS OF CREDENCE OF MR. LUCIO PIRES DE AMORIM AMBASSADOR-DESIGNATE OF BRAZIL (4/11/05)
1. Your Excellency, I am very pleased to accept the Letters of Credence by which His Excellency President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has appointed you Ambassador of Brazil to Botswana.
2. Let me from the on-set, thank His Excellency the President and the people of Brazil for the warm hospitality they extended to me and my delegation during our State Visit to Brazil in July this year. The visit has no doubt opened new avenues for closer co-operation between our two countries.
3. I am therefore confident that during your tour of service, you will ensure that the Framework of Cooperation Agreement which our two countries signed during the State Visit, is implemented for our mutual benefit. Our various Ministries are currently working on specific project proposals to undertake with Brazil under the latter Agreement.
4. Your Excellency, Brazil has made impressive strides in many areas such as the battle against HIV/AIDS, the agricultural sector, education and manufacturing sectors, amongst others. There are therefore good prospects for co-operation in the latter, amongst others.
5. You will no doubt have realized in the short time you have been in Botswana that, like in Brazil, the game of football is a national passion. Besides our national team the Zebras, Brazil football is enthusiastically supported and admired by many people in Botswana. I am therefore very grateful that the Brazil Football Academy has trained some of our football coaches. Given Brazil's world class performance on the football field, I have no doubt that through closer co-operation, our young football players will be given the necessary skills and inspiration. I appeal to you, Mr. Ambassador, to ensure that our football authorities are given all the possible assistance Brazil can afford.
6. As you have rightly pointed out, Botswana signed the SACU/MERCUOSUR Preferential Trade Agreement in March 2005. The latter should, no doubt, contribute to improved trade relations between Botswana and Brazil.
7. Your Excellency, we admire the development strides that have placed Brazil amongst the most developed Third World countries. We are above all, grateful for the leading role your country plays as an advocate of South/South Co-operation and a fairer international trade regime, amongst others. It is for the latter reason that we are convinced that Brazil can play a positive role as one of the Permanent Members of the United Nations Security Council. We give you our best wishes in that regard.
8. Finally, Your Excellency let me once again welcome you to Botswana.
Address by Ambassador Lucio Pires de Amorim of the Federal Republic of Brazil during his presentation of credential to H.E. President Festus G. Mogae:
1. Your Excellency, it is a special honour for me to be here today in order to present my letters of credence. This official function demonstrates the mutual interest of Botswana and Brazil in preserving and strengthening their good relations.
2. Africa constitutes an essential dimension of Brazilian foreign policy. The Government of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has pursued the aim of strengthening Brazil's ties with the African continent. In fact, since his inauguration, trade and cooperation between Brazil and Africa have grown significantly, and our dialogue has intensified.
3. As President Lula pointed out in his speech last July, on the occasion of Your Excellency's State Visit to Brazil, Botswana is an example of political stability and commitment to democratic values. Moreover, Botswana has played an important role for keeping peace and harmony in Southern Africa. Botswana is well recognized as one of the leading countries in Africa, boasting social indicators well above the average on the continent, as well as solid institutions and valuable resources.
4. Concerning the multilateral agenda, I would like to express the most sincere gratitude of my Government for Botswana supporting Brazil's candidacy for a permanent seat in the UN Security Council - which should be more transparent and representative, with the presence of developing countries as permanent members. Brazil understands and respects the positions adopted by the African Union and hopes that a common position between the G-4 and the African countries can be reached, so as o allow us to have a more representative Security Council, a dynamic ECOSOC and a functioning Human Rights Council.
5. In the bilateral agenda, we were honoured to welcome the visit to Brazil, in August 2004, of an important mission of the Botswana Government, headed by ambassador Ernest Mpofu, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. Moreover, in March 2005 a Brazilian mission to Gaborone explored possibilities of cooperation in the fields of health, environment, education, sports fisheries and eco-tourism.
6. But there can be no doubt that Your Excellency's visit to Brazil - in July 2005 - and the signature of the Bilateral Agreement on Technical Cooperation marked a new stage in the relations between our two countries. The Agreement is a legal framework around which future programmes of cooperation will develop in issues such as agriculture, education, and the fight against AIDS. It is worth underscoring the success that both countries have achieved in fighting AIDS by means of a programme of free and universal distribution of anti-retroviral drugs, that led to stabilization of the annual average rate of new infections.
7. In the multilateral trade sphere, our countries also share a common vision. In fact, we advocate the full integration of the countries of the South into the WTO, so that all members may benefit equally of the multilateral trade rules, by sharing equitable rights and obligations. It is worth emphasizing that, thanks to the coordination among countries from Africa, Asia and Latin America in the G-20, it has been possible to associate trade liberalisation and social justice.
8. Still in the trade area, Brazil and Botswana can certainly improve their relations with the Preferential Trade Agreement between MERCOSUR (The common Market of the South between Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay) and SACU (The Southern African Customs Union), which was concluded in Ouro-Peto Brazil, in December 16, 2004 and signed by the Botswana Government in March 2005.
9. I take this opportunity to congratulate Your Excellency for your tenure of office as current Chairman of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the host of the Silver Jubilee Ordinary Summit. I cannot forget to underscore the importance of the 2005 SADC Summit Communiqué, which, with reference to the Millennium Development goals, "called upon International Co-operating Partners to increase the level of resources being channelled to developing countries to finance education, health and social development activities," As it stated in the Joint Communiqué issued by Your Excellency and President Lula on July 26th 2005, "the full implementation of the Millennium Development Goals should be a priority of all countries.
10. Your Excellency, on behalf of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, I wish to convey the most sincere wishes for the prosperity and happiness to You and to the people of Botswana.
D2c) Republic of Sierra Leone
ADDRESS BY HIS EXCELLENCY MR. FESTUS G. MOGAE, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF BOTSWANA, ACCEPTING THE LETTERS OF CREDENCE OF MR. MELVIN B. CHALOBAH, HIGH COMMISSIONER-DESIGNATE OF THE REPUBLIC OF SIERRA LEONE TO BOTSWANA (4/11/05)
1. Your Excellency, I am delighted to accept the Letters of Credence by which His Excellency the President of the Republic of Sierra Leone, Mr. Ahmed Tejan Kabbah, accredits you as High Commissioner of the Republic of Sierra Leone to Botswana.
2. Your appointment as the first High Commissioner of Sierra Leone, just over a year following the establishment of diplomatic relations between our two countries, is clear testimony of your country's resolve to deepen the cordial bonds of friendship that subsist between our two countries.
3. We must commit ourselves to work together in order to further strengthen co-operation between our two countries for mutual benefit.
5. Your Excellency, Botswana and Sierra Leone have a lot in common. For one, we are both diamond producing countries. Our two countries are active participants in the Kimberley Process, a process that has come up with a Certification Scheme for rough diamonds with the sole purpose of curbing the spread of illicitly traded diamonds.
6. I am happy to note that, Botswana has in the past offered training to your law enforcement officials geared, towards enhancing the security of your diamonds including in the mining operations. We commend your country for the progress it has made, securing this vital resource for the development and the welfare of its people.
7. You will be happy to observe, Your Excellency that we have amongst us a number of your fellow citizens living in this country and working in different capacities including in the legal field. I hope that their presence will assist you in the execution of your assignment here. Although you are based in Ethiopia, we hope that you will have time to visit us regularly during your tenure, to explore opportunities for the advancement of our bilateral co-operation.
8. We commend the Government and people of Sierra Leone for the achievement they have made to bring peace and tranquillity to their country. Our commendation goes particularly to His Excellency, President Kabbah, who invested so much time and energy to see this come to fruition. Please convey to him my warm greetings and best wishes for his personal health.
9. Finally, Your Excellency, let me welcome you most warmly to Botswana. I assure you of our readiness to work with you in order to further strengthen our bilateral co-operation and friendship.
Remarks by H.E. Mr. Melvin H. Chalobah on the occasion of the presentation of his letters of credence to the President of the Republic of Botswana, Mr. Festus G. Mogae:
1. Your Excellency, permit me to extend to you personally, and the government and people of Botswana, warm fraternal greetings and sincere best wishes from H.E. President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah, and the government and people of Sierra Leone.
2. Personally, this is a historic day for me, being my country's first High Commissioner to the Republic of Botswana, a country which is considered as a model for democracy and good governance and the least corrupt country in Africa.
3. Mr. President, although formal diplomatic ties between our two countries were established only a year ago, our relations over the years have been characterized by sincere friendship.
4. Mr. President, during the decade long civil war in my country, Sierra Leoneans were received here in Botswana with open arms and permitted to work in institutions of higher learning such as universities and colleges, as well as in vocational areas. To date some f our compatriots are living and working in Botswana in very hospitable and fraternal conditions. In addition, Botswana has trained some members of our police force.
5. I, therefore, take this opportunity to thank the government and people of Botswana for demonstrating real friendship to
6. Sierra Leone in a difficult period of need in the history of our country. As the saying goes, one only knows his true friends in times of difficulty.
7. Your Excellency, our two economies are based among others, mainly on mining industry viz the exploitation of our diamond resources.
8. During my tenure of office I shall endeavour to exchange with the relevant authorities in Botswana the experience we have had in this sector, and hope in return to learn from the Botswana experience. It is my hope and desire that the existing bonds of friendship be further strengthened and that new areas of cooperation, which shall be beneficial to our two countries and peoples be explored during my tenure in office. I have no doubt that I can count on Your Excellency's support and cooperation and that of the government and people of Botswana in achieving these objectives.
9. I now have the honour and privilege to present to Your Excellency the letters by which H.E. Alhaji Dr. Ahmad Tejan Kabbah, President of the Republic of Sierra Leone, has accredited me as his first high Commissioner to the Republic of Botswana. Your Excellency, I thank you.
D2d) Republic of Malawi
REMARKS BY HIS EXCELLENCY Mr. FESTUS G. MOGAE, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF BOTSWANA, ACCEPTING THE LETTERS OF CREDENCE OF MR. MICHAEL B. KAMPHAMBE NKHOMA, HIGH COMMISSIONER-DESIGNATE OF THE REPUBLIC OF MALAWI (4/11/05)
1. Your Excellency, I am delighted to accept the Letters of Credence from my Dear Brother, His Excellency Dr. Bingu wa Mutharika, President of the Republic of Malawi, appointing you as High Commissioner to the Republic of Botswana. Please convey to His Excellency, fraternal greetings and best wishes for his personal health.
2. Let me take this opportunity to welcome you to our country and to assure you that the Government of Botswana will give you all possible support in your noble assignment. As you rightly pointed out, Botswana and Malawi have long standing warm and cordial relations. Your accreditation as Malawi's High Commissioner to Botswana will therefore further strengthen our two countries' friendship and bilateral co-operation.
3. Our people have interacted since time immemorial. We have in our community a significant number of people of Malawian descent who have become Botswana citizens. They have now fully integrated into our society and hardly speak a word of Chinyanja.
4. We also have a number of your compatriots who live in this country pursuing various vocations. Their contribution towards the development of our country is deeply appreciated.
5. Your Excellency, bilateral co-operation between our two countries is excellent. We co-operate in a number of areas including trade, agriculture, health and human resource development.
6. In the area of human resource development, for instance, Botswana has benefited from the Malawi College of Agriculture especially in fisheries and animal science. We have also trained a number of our citizens in Ophthalmology at the Malawi Ophthalmic Training Centre.
7. Our countries have also exchanged experiences in a number of areas including combating corruption and economic crime, public service reform, judicial matters as well as the application of customary law. You will no doubt ensure that we co-operate even closer, particularly under the Joint Permanent Commission for Co-operation which our countries established in September 2001.
8. I am grateful to you, High Commissioner, for acknowledging the modest role Botswana has played in seeking to resolve regional and African conflicts. We do so out of our deep conviction that our Governments can never deliver on their promises to those who elected them, unless there is peace, good governance and democracy.
9. Your Excellency, conflicts disrupt our development efforts and give Africa an image that negates our desire to attract the much needed foreign investment. I am therefore relieved that the majority of SADC States currently enjoy peace, and respect the will of their people. However, it remains the collective and individual responsibility of all SADC leaders, including those in Opposition, to place the welfare of their people above narrow partisan considerations.
10. Let me conclude by wishing you success in your assignment as Malawi's High Commissioner to the Republic of Botswana.
Speech delivered by H.E. Mr. M.B. Kamphambe Nkoma, High Commissioner-Designate of the republic of Malawi to H.E. Mr. Festus Mogae, President of the Republic of Botswana.
1. Your Excellency, I feel greatly honoured to present to you, sir, the Letters of Recall of my predecessor, Mr. Gamaliel Petros Bandawe, and the Letters of commission by which it has pleased His Excellency Dr. Bingu wa Mutharika, President of the Republic of Malawi, to accredit me to the Republic of Botswana as High Commissioner.
2. Your Excellency, permit me from the outset to convey to you, sir and through Your Excellency to the people and Government of the Republic of Botswana personal greetings and best wishes from His Excellency Dr. Bingu wa Mutharika. IU would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate you Sir, and your party on your re-election during the general elections which took place late last year. I also wish to congratulate, through Your Excellency, the people of Botswana for conducting themselves so peacefully during elections. This is a quality which continues to earn this country the admiration of many other countries in Africa and beyond.
3. Your Excellency, the Government and people of Malawi attach great importance to the longstanding, warm and cordial relations that exist between Botswana and Malawi. These bilateral relations have been growing in strength over the years and Malawi has the desire to sustain that trend.
4. The two countries, Botswana and Malawi, articulate the same principles, values and ideals at various international for a and enjoy common membership of the United Nations, Commonwealth, the African Uni0on, Non Aligned Movement and the Southern African Development community (SADC). In this regard, Malawi, salute Botswana for playing host to the Secretariat of SADC. Indeed, Botswana hosted so ably this year's SADC Summit, at which Your Excellency took over as Chairman of that august organization. We offer our congratulations to Your Excellency in that regard.
5. Your Excellency, as developing countries, Botswana and Malawi share common goals and aspirations for their respective peoples, most important being poverty alleviation. This is central to the Malawi Government's development endeavours. However, we realize that fighting poverty is not an easy task and to achieve success calls for closer economic cooperation between our two countries. Therefore, Malawi shall endeavour to share its experiences with her sister country and seek joint solutions to common problems, either bilaterally or multilaterally. Multilaterally - through SADC, the African Union and NEPAD.
6. Bilaterally, we would wish that trade and investment between Botswana and Malawi should be encouraged as much as possible. This would be one positive step towards widening economic cooperation between our two countries. Like Botswana, Malawi has many places of tourist attraction and an exchange of information on the development of the tourism industry would be of immense value.
7. In the field of conflict resolution, Malawi commends the role that has been played by Botswana, both individually and collectively, in seeking lasting solutions to conflicts that other countries are experiencing on the continent of Africa. We appreciate highly your Excellency's personal commitment in this regard.
8. Permit me, Your Excellency, to take this opportunity to thank you, sir, the Government and people of the Republic of Botswana for the hospitality being accorded to the Malawi nationals resident in your great country and working in various sectors of the economy. It is our desire that our nationals shall make the best possible use of their stay here and enhance closer friendly relations between the two sister nations.
9. Finally, it is now my singular honour and rare privilege to present to Your Excellency my Letters of Commission as High Commissioner of the Republic of Malawi to the Republic of Botswana. I thank you Sir.
E. OP PRESS OFFICE FORWARDING:
E 1) 2/11/05: BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC ADVISORY COUNCIL
1. The Business and Economic Advisory Council was convened on the 24th October 2005 under the chairmanship of Mr. Joannes ter Haar to formulate preliminary proposals to Government on a Strategy for Economic Growth and Diversification and agree a work plan.
2. The Business and Economic Advisory Council was established by His Excellency the President in September 2005 to research and advise Government on a comprehensive strategy for Economic Diversification and Sustainable Growth as well as identify policy decisions which will be necessary for the implementation of the strategy. The overarching strategy to be developed will be consistent with Vision 2016 ideals as well as National Development Plan objectives.
3. In its deliberations, the Council commended Government for the economic and social progress it has made up to date but emphasized the need for the economy to be transformed rapidly to become more internationally competitive and broad based in order to generate increased employment, reduce poverty and associated social ills. Council will make proposals to Government on an appropriate policy environment and draw up an Action Plan for implementation, including the identification of key projects to give initial impetus to diversification. The Council highlighted the need for Botswana and national economic agents to become more investor friendly, outward oriented and to pursue consistent and sound macro-economic policies. It also emphasized the need to eliminate lengthy licensing and other procedures as well as to de-regulate the economy in order to lower the cost of doing business in Botswana and make the country more internationally competitive.
4. The Council expressed satisfaction that Botswana has great potential to attract significant amounts of foreign direct investment and generate substantial business growth if Government makes a number of fundamental institutional, regulatory and procedural changes and improvements. It further underlined the need for bold and innovative measures and a change of mindset by all national stakeholders to support new growth areas and accept the consequences of transformation. Council noted that countries that have succeeded in transforming their economies were those where the public and private sector worked in unison with one another and that Botswana could learn from such experiences. In pursuit of its mandate, the Council will work in close collaboration with pertinent national institutions and stakeholders.
E 2) 2/11/05: REMARKS BY THE HIGH COMMISSIONER OF THE REPUBLIC OF BOTSWANA TO ZAMBIA, MRS. TUELONYANA DITLHABI-OLIPHANT, ON THE OCCASION OF THE PRESENTATION OF CREDENTIALS TO H.E. MR. LEVY PATRICK MWANAWASA, SC PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF ZAMBIA
1. Your Excellency, Allow me to convey to you, and through you to the people of the Republic of Zambia, warm and fraternal greetings from your dear brother and colleague, His Excellency Festus Mogae, President of the Republic of Botswana.
2. I regard my appointment as resident High Commissioner to the Republic of Zambia as a great honour and privilege. The Republic of Zambia and its people are held in high regard by the Government and the people of Botswana due to the long standing ties of friendship and good neighbourliness. The two countries have continued to enjoy good bilateral relations based on mutual respect and common desire for peace and prosperity both at home and in the region.
3. Your Excellency, Botswana and Zambia have a long and tested tradition of cooperation which has endured a period of almost four decades. As I present my Letters of Credence to Your Excellency today, I am confident that this will further reinforce and nourish this tradition.
4. As developing countries, with relatively similar social and economic background, it is imperative that the two countries support each other in their endeavour to attain sustainable development and security for the sake of our two nations and respective citizens.
5. The existence of the two cooperation frameworks - i.e. the Joint Permanent Commission for Cooperation; and the Joint Permanent Commission on Defence and Security - between our two countries, offer a more practical and solid base for such cooperation.
6. Your Excellency, It is pleasing to note that considerable progress is being made in the implementation of most of the programmes agreed during the last Sessions of our Joint Permanent Commissions. I must note, however, that much more still needs to be done to explore even greater opportunities that each of our countries offer in the various sectors, for mutual benefit.
7. We need to take full advantage of other prospects in the areas of trade, tourism and investment and in partnerships that would serve to advance development in our countries. The proposed construction of the Kazungula Bridge across the Zambezi River, which is eagerly awaited by both countries, would, no doubt, open up greater opportunities in these areas. We also need to advance re-negotiations on the Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA). This would allow the resumption of air links between the two countries and thereby ensure an alternative and faster form of communication.
8. Your Excellency, Botswana pays homage to your great country and its peoples for the contribution made towards the development of our country during the time of need at independence, when you opened your educational institutions to many Batswana. Our country also continues to benefit from skilled manpower from Zambia, particularly in the areas of health and education.
9. On the home front, Botswana is encouraged by positive developments that are taking place in Zambia. Most importantly, we salute you, Mr. President, for your singular resolve to use all available resources to fight the scourge of HIV and AIDS. We pray for enduring results so that successful lessons could be learned from Zambia in tackling this disease.
10. On the economic front, while there are still more challenges that lie ahead, Botswana is encouraged by the recent strides that your country has made. In particular, the positive economic growth rate and your country's attainment of the Completion Point under the International Monetary Fund's Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Initiative.
11. Botswana also wishes your country well in its endeavour to deepen democracy and good governance through its continuing efforts to review the Republican Constitution. We are confident that while the exercise is not an easy one, your efforts and resolve would yield positive results and provide a lesson for all of us.
12. Your Excellency, At the regional level, Zambia remains an inspiration, particularly the pivotal role it played during the liberation struggle. History will also record the role that your country continues to play in search for peace in most troubled spots in our Continent.
13. Your Excellency, Allow me to conclude by reaffirming my commitment to build on to the existing good relations between our two countries during my tenure. Furthermore, I shall strive to explore new avenues for cooperation to enhance our bilateral relations for the welfare of our two nations.
14. Your Excellency, I now request you to receive the Letters of Recall of my esteemed predecessor, Mr. Zibane John Ntakhwana, and to accept my own Letters by which His Excellency President Festus Mogae appoints me as Botswana's High Commissioner to Zambia. I thank you Sir.
E 3) Additional notices and forwarding from 30/10- 5/11/05:
* 2/11/05: SAPA: "S.A. might send diamonds to Botswana"
* 3/11/05: President to attend tonight's launch of Legae Investors
* 4/11/05: TravelTV: "Botswana is an African success"
F. Botswana in the Global Media in October 2005
F 1) Global on line news reports about Botswana during the month of October 2005.
Note: The numbers below are approximations and do not include all on line news reports, but rather those recent, up to 30 day old, stories that are being listed by major search engines with news categories, which were consulted for this survey. All categories are for text appearing online in the English language unless otherwise indicated.
1) & "AIDS" and/or "HIV" 279
2) & "South Africa" 871
3) & "Zimbabwe" 356
4) & "Trade" 231
5) & "President Mogae" 158
6) & "Democracy/Good Gov." 140
7) & "travel/tourism" 223
8) & "football/soccer" 171
9) & "Diamonds" 166
10) & "SADC" 100
11) & "Diamonds" & "Dev." 53
12) & "elephants" 35
13) & "Bushmen" 47
14) & "Masire" (former President) 22
15) "McCall Smith" (author) 16
16) & "Survival International" 27
F 2) Principal sources of online news reports about Botswana appearing on select major search engines for the month of October 2005:
SAPA (RSA) 33
SABC (RSA) 15
News24 (RSA) 11
Sunday Times (RSA) 8
Independent (RSA) 10
Zim Papers (Zimbabwe) 5
AFP (Agence France Presse) 8
IRIN (UN Info Network) 20
Inter Press Service (IPS) 4
Associated Press (AP) 89
Voice of America 4
Xinhua News (China) 5
Bloomberg International 7
United Press Inter. 2
Approximately 32% of the surveyed on-line reports mentioning Botswana were sourced directly from either the Botswana Press Agency (BOPA) or Mmegi. All Mmegi reports, along with another 36 additional reports, were also distributed by allAfrica.com. A mere 4% of the stories were from other identified regional, SADC, media sources. The online editions of the local Botswana Gazette, Midweek Sun and The Voice newspapers continue to not appear on the news search engines consulted for purposes of this survey.
CKGR: Journalists and other interested members of the public seeking official information and comment on the circumstances surrounding the voluntary resettlement of Botswana citizen outside of the Central Kgalagadi Game Reserve (CKGR) are advised in the first instance to contact the Director of the Public Relations, Research and Information Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mr. Cliff Maribe, at Tel: (267) 3600763 or e-mail: email@example.com. For further background information online you may also wish to browse http://www.gov.bw/basarwa/index.html.