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Tlou Energy records significant increase in gas reserves

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Coal bed Methane mining company, Tlou Energy recorded significant increase in gas reserves from 3.9 billion cubic feet to 40.8 billion cubic feet. The only gas mining company in Botswana is focused on delivering power in Botswana and Southern Africa through the development of coal bed methane (CBM). The company has the most advanced CBM project in Botswana. Its current project includes the Lesedi Project and Mamba project. The Lesedi project, which is located at Karoo Kalahari Basin, Botswana already benefits from significant, independently certified Contingent Gas Resources of 3.2 trillion cubic feet (3C) and independently certified Gas Reserves.  Tlou has been producing gas at Selemo for nearly two years and says using gas at its project will reduce the company spend on diesel by about 50 000 litres per annum.  

Tlou Managing Director, Tony Gilby said this very significant upgrade in gas reserves reinforces the commerciality of the Lesedi and Mamba Projects. “The recent seismic survey and core hole drilling campaign, along with the Selemo pilot wells producing sustained gas flows for a substantial period of time, confirms that there is huge gas production potential for Tlou’s area. Ongoing work to assess this potential continues in tandem with planning for connection to the regional power grid,” said Gilby. In a statement published last week, Gilby said they believe that the Lesedi and Mamba projects represent a very valuable resource for the company. “This reserves upgrade provides continued confidence for the Company to invest in additional appraisal activities aimed at further increasing certified gas reserves.

Adding reserves, and planning for grid connection, reinforces the Company’s objective to become the first company to sell power generated by CBM gas in Botswana.” Tlou has a 100 percent interest in and operates 10 prospective CBM licences in Botswana, which are considered to be prospective for coalbed methane. However, Gilby stated that the Lesedi CBM Project currently has no gas transportation infrastructure in place because the powerline infrastructure, which is owned by the Botswana Government, exists to the east of the Lesedi Project. “Depending on the scale of any Lesedi development, this infrastructure may not be sufficient for Lesedi and additional infrastructure may be required and would be considered under any Lesedi development plan,” he said.

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Healthcare system to improve

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The Health ministry has developed a seven-point programme to guide the country in improving the healthcare system, says Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr Alfred Rabashemi Madigele.

“The seven priority areas will serve as a roadmap and a guardian angel towards improving the overall healthcare system and increasing access to health care while fighting the burden of disease that confronts us,” said Madigele at Masa Square Hotel on Tuesday.

The focal areas include decentralisation; Universal Health Coverage, Tertiary Care, Strategic leveraging on the Private sector; Supply Chain; Research as well as Staff welfare and accountability.
Point-one of the seven priority areas according to Dr Madigele is about empowering the District Health Management Teams (DHMTs) and transforming them into fully fledged Regional Health Authorities.

“In this case, they will be rationalised from 27 to 18 and have the authority to hire A and B Scales, promote up to C1 and manage micro procurement,” he said. Point two is about improving the quality of healthcare services. “The main causes of mortality and their risk factors in Botswana are Primary Health Care issues,” Dr Madigele said.

He added that “Our efforts for the attainment of Universal Health Coverage should thus focus on: Prevention; Comprehensive screening; Early treatment; and Surveillance at the community.”
This he said, would require revamped grassroots efforts in which adequate numbers of community health workers through partnerships with the non-governmental sector will be deployed as necessary.

According to Dr Madigele, the top five causes of death in Botswana in 2017 were HIV/AIDS, Ischemic heart disease, stroke, lower respiratory infections and Diabetes. He said compared to 2007, NCDs among these had increased in burden by an average of 34%. The top five risk factors related to these causes of mortality were unsafe sex; poor diet; high blood pressure; alcohol abuse and tobacco use.

Improving the quality of care, Madigele said will also include the safety and security of patients; attitudes of staff as experienced by patients; time taken in queues either before seeing a health worker or receiving medication and the availability of drugs.

Meanwhile, the health minister revealed that the commissioning of Sir Ketumile Masire Teaching Hospital (SKMTH) is ongoing with the facility scheduled for opening on April 24th. “This will be a phased approach commencing with some services including paediatric oncology, internal medicine, rheumatology and endocrinology, diagnostic radiology, laboratory services and pharmacy”.

A phased commissioning of SKMTH will reduce overdependence on South Africa for referrals, reduce costs and also institutionalise provision of super specialist services within Botswana.

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JUST PROPAGANDA

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Dr Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi has refuted claims that she is under the radar of the Financial Intelligence Agency. Dr Venson-Moitoi who pulled out of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) presidential race at the eleventh hour, was last week reported to have had her accounts frozen because she was being investigated by FIA.

It was alleged that the freezing of the accounts would have a negative bearing on her campaign as she could not access her funds. Responding to enquiries on the issue during a media briefing in Kang Village, Dr Venson-Moitoi said the allegations were far from the truth.

According to the former cabinet minister, all her accounts were clean and she was accessing her funds without any challenge. “The person who was saying all those things was lying. My accounts are clean as we speak. I was never confronted by FIA or anyone. As far as I know I am not under any investigations,” she said.

Linked to that, it had emerged that Dr Venson-Moitoi’s campaign was being funded from outside the country especially by the some rich families in South Africa. Reports then suggested that her source of funding was blocked through the intervention of FIA, and that even her accounts were frozen. She dismissed the reports as propaganda that was perhaps spread to soil her campaign.

“I am clean. This is why I am never mentioned in missing funds from National Petroleum Fund or those of Capital Management Botswana,” said the Serowe South Member of Parliament. Last month Dr Venson-Moitoi had reported to the Directorate of Intelligence and Security (DIS) Director General Peter Magosi that she was not happy that she is being followed around the country by security agents.

Magosi dismissed the claims on grounds that his organisation is not the only one that uses private motor vehicles.

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