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ILO and Media join forces to fight labour & social injustices

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The International Labour Organisation’s (ILO) Country Director for Zambia has said that employment and labour issues are central to survival of communities and governments.

Alexio Musindo was speaking at the ongoing training course for media professionals in Livingstone, Zambia. He said employment and labour issues are central to all political campaigns and as ILO they believe decent work is the route for sustainable development, for assisting people work out of poverty.

The four day workshop in Livingstone brought journalists from SADC countries of Zimbabwe, Botswana, South Africa and Mozambique to equip them with knowledge on international labour standards. Objective media reporting on labour and social matters which can further public understanding and in turn, strengthen the application of ILO at local level so as to advance human rights at work, he said, can advance opportunities for women and men to obtain decent and productive work in conditions of freedom, equity, security and human dignity.

President of Zambia Union of Journalists (ZUJ), Shamaoma Musonda urged journalists to remember that they still have the workers out there to fight for to ensure all get decent work and a decent wage. “And this is where this training course becomes extremely important.” He said the cost of human labour has turned into something employers are not appreciating properly and get to come up with all sorts of aggressive moves to ensure they pay workers close to nothing. This has led to abuse of staff especially those vulnerable because of immigration issues, poverty and joblessness among others.

“As a media, we are naturally inclined to make sure we play our part in stopping this evil and when an organisation as big as the ILO identifies the media as a key player in fighting this injustice, it turns into a win-win situation for both,” added Musonda.

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BMC secures beef market in Seychelles

Dikarabo Ramadubu

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Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) will soon start to sell its beef to the Island of Seychelles. Not only will they sell frozen raw meat, but will also send corned beef for trial in the Island.

All this is thanks to last week’s visit by President Mokgweetsi Masisi who included in his delegation executive management of the BMC, led by Chief Executive Officer, Dr Akolang Tombale.
The agreement signed between BMC and two leading Seychelles companies, will see BMC exporting at least 48 tonnes of raw beef to the island possibly from October. The names of the two companies that BMC signed an agreement with are Seychelles Trading Company which is a quasi-government organisation, and Rosebelle Company which is privately owned.

Although both have agreed to trade with each other, BMC cannot start immediately, as they have to wait for the green light from Seychelles companies who still have to apply for import permits in accordance with the law of their republic.

Speaking to The Midweek Sun, Tombale expressed gratitude that they managed to get good business in Seychelles through the assistance of President Masisi. “We are ready to export any time from now. As you know Seychelles is an island surrounded by mountains and cannot produce much if not anything. “They therefore depend much on imports even from as far as Brazil and Europe. Their economy is driven by tourism and they do not differ much with the European market in terms of the demand for beef as most tourists come from Europe and United States.”

Dr. Tombale said they agreed with the two companies that since “we are not sure about the logistics we will start by selling 24tonnes to each company per month, meaning we will be supplying the Island with a total of 48 tonnes per month. The idea is to start small and grow bigger as the people get used to our beef.” BMC has also negotiated to sell small stock meat to Seychelles and successfully negotiated for local chicken farmers to start selling their range chicken to Seychelles as well.

According to Tombale, he negotiated the deal after being approached by local chicken farmers amongst them Kgosi Mosadi Seboko of Balete, who requested that “we should try to find a market for chicken farmers as we go around the world searching for the beef market.” Tombale revealed that for a start both range chickens and small stock will not be supplied in tonnes or large quantities as they will be sold on a trial basis.

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G-west community reunion-walk a resounding success

Keletso Thobega

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Multitudes turned up for the Mosengwaketsi community walk and braai session this past Saturday in Gaborone West. The walk was held in the morning and was preceded by football games and a braai session that went on until late in the evening.

According to the event director Tshenolo Palai, the aim of the community day event was to revive community spirit and address crime and social ills. “The Mosengwaketsi community reunion will be held not only to create a platform to build unity but also address the social ill of passion killings,” he said.

Palai said that they had also invited health stakeholders for a wellness segment because they had realised that there are many health related conditions that affect the quality of people’s lives hence they had joined forces with religious organisations, the business community, neighbourhood outreach policing and other stakeholders in the area to encourage a culture of unity and create dialogue between all the parties.

He noted that they had wanted to create a relaxed environment conducive for different people to engage and strengthen their networks. He said they were also concerned with the high rate of crimes of passion in Botswana and also wanted to create a platform for both men and women to open up on issues that affect them because most people tend to be more relaxed in a social setting.

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