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WANIFRA empowers women in the media



Over 30 female journalists in leadership positions attended this year’s World’s Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WANIFRA) Women In News course last week in Johannesburg.

The gesture is a partnership with the School of Journalism at Wits University in South Africa. Under the arrangement, female journalists in leadership positions and those aspiring to be leaders attended one week training at the beginning of the programme. The second week of the training will be conducted towards the end of the programme.

There are take home assignments and workplace assignments that need to be taken as part of the certification. The course introduces the participants to management principles, finance for finance managers, people management, marketing and advertising, research and new technology, strategic planning and governance.

The theoretical principles are presented in the context of how they apply to the effective management of media organisations. Meanwhile women that attended the first leg of the training were empowered to be bold and resilient in their journalism career.

Co-founder of Jozi FM Kanyi Mkhonza came up with the notion of ‘Own it,’ under which she encouraged women to stamp their authority and to set up their own culture at work. She also taught on Design Team Agreement, under which she questioned the kind of atmosphere that managers want to create in their places of work. Among some of the human resource principles, Mkhonza encouraged leaders to share information and responsibilities, identify potential, coach and mentor talent, reward staff and handle confrontations maturely.

Mail and Guardian founding Editor Anton Harber encouraged women to take risks. “Success stories have an element of failure in them. Admit your mistakes and move on,” he said. Paul Fray, managing director of Fray Intermedia encouraged women to embrace the simple style of writing, saying it is the best. Editor of Moneyweb Holdings Ryk Van Niekerk said newsrooms must have a budget and that managers should only keep the best people.

In an interview with The Midweek Sun, chief Sub-editor of The Star newspaper in Kenya, Wanjiru Kinoti said she had learned that gender is not a standard issue, but rather pervasive. She said that almost every issue in news has a gender dimension. “For instance, transport is a gender issue. The lack of a good, reliable and safe public transport system can restrict women’s movements and activities and hence hamper their contribution to the economy,” she said.

Bureau chief of Mwananchi Communications in Tanzania Sharon Sauva, said she had learned how to manage people. “Before, managing people was a big issue for me because companies always give people positions without any training on people management,” she said.

WANIFRA is a global organisation of the world’s newspapers and news publishers, representing more than 18 000 publications, 15 000 online sites and over 3000 companies in more than 120 countries. It exists to promote media freedom and the economic independence of news media as an essential condition of that freedom.

Women In News works with newspapers and their high potential female employees to overcome the gender gap in management and senior editorial positions.

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BMC secures beef market in Seychelles

Dikarabo Ramadubu



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



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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