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lesotho promiseI must tell you that I am impressed to see that the business is really strong in Antwerp for the GOOD things, like this Lesotho promise, that will bring some money back to this poor African country. This was also the reason they called it the Lesotho promise. It sold for more than 12 millions dollars in Antwerp, and when cut in pieces it will bring 20 millions of dollars. Some of this money will come back through the taxes back to Lesotho. 

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Photo: David Hecht/IRIN

DRC: Diamonds, children and witchcraft

MBUJI MAYI, 17 Jul 2006 (IRIN) - Diamonds, the top export in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), are mostly extracted from the middle of the country at Kasai Oriental Province. Yet people there are among the poorest in the DRC and diamonds seem to be tearing apart their society. Children do much of the work and many are killed in accidents or in fighting over diamonds. Distrust is feeding superstition and causing a strange and terrible phenomenon: thousands of children are being accused of witchcraft. read diamond children Full report

news: Botswana urged not to depend on diamonds

found at April 16, 2006

South Africa Economist Professor Owen Skae has doubts of whether Botswana is proficient enough to compete in the global market.

His observation was that Botswana should not only be seen as a beacon of democracy, but rather as a number one country in the region where investors would prefer to put their money. The weakness of Botswana as he sees it was that there was a lack of skilled manpower, and as such he proposed that the shortage of skilled manpower be identified.

“The time has come for Botswana to identify where it is lacking in skilled manpower. Those areas should be identified and the government should assist in training people in specialised areas” he said.

Skae believes that university graduates should be encouraged to create employment for themselves by starting businesses of their own. “When people graduate from the University, the government should be able to assist them with the necessary finance to commence a business,” he advised.

He said many countries failed to diversify their economies because people left those countries in search for greener pastures.

“In my opinion people should be encouraged to invest in their own countries for the simple reason to keep skilled manpower in countries such as Botswana” he said.
Gayland Kombani, Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Trade and Industry called upon Batswana not to be too dependent on government handouts.

He said there will come a time when the government would be unable to provide for the citizens and cited that many businesses would fall.
Kombani said the ‘Bazezuru’ community in Botswana were a classic example of people who were innovative and enterprising.

“This community do not depend on anybody. They use their hands to make a living they do not wait for anybody to give them hand outs” he said.
He said even the Zimbabwean community in Botswana are innovative. He said they made a living out of Batswana’s ignorance. Kombani said the weakness in Batswana was that they did not value information and networking.
“A Motswana entrepreneur would have many business ideas and fail to even implement one. My advice is to have a business idea and concentrate on it.” He concluded

Source: The Voice

His worry was that the Botswana market was too small and such there was a need for the country to review its trade policies. Skae said Botswana should be visible in both the SADC region and International market.

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