Joint Mind Consult (JMC) Country Managing Director Dr Patrick Molutsi says the country needs to develop its research profile since evidence-based research is the only way to measure progress or failures.
Molutsi said that research is taken for granted in Africa and it is sad that very little money has been invested in research and technology. He told a press briefing on Monday that as JMC they are bringing research leaders to conduct research seminars on Research Data Management. He said that instead of the usual talk about the transformation to technology there should be action to complement it.
Giving an example of the recently ended Botswana Golden Jubilee celebration, he said research should have been carried out to determine how far we have come in terms of our economic journey, our road accidents statistics and many other indicators to show our real journey and evaluate.
He said if research was not done to see how Botswana has been performing and as a result there won’t be any change in the next coming 50 years. Molutsi who once headed the Human Resource Development Council (HRDC) said even through limited budget he pushed to have research done at the institution and even convinced the board to have a department of research and statistics.
On JMC he said they exist to aid even tertiary institutions to conduct research with them and evaluate how many of their graduates are getting absorbed in the industry and they also have services for students who want to pursue their education further. Their seminars will be conducted at Botswana Institute for Technology Research and Innovation on the 7th of October as well as the University of Botswana and Botswana International University of Science and Technology on the 10th of October.
The speakers will include Dr Ross Wilkinson of Australia National Data Service, Dr Mark Parsons, Secretary General of Research Data Alliance, Professor John Wood Secretary General of Association of Commonwealth Universities and Dr Simon Hodson Executive Director of the Committee on Data for Science and Technology.
Gov’t swiftly acts on BMC
Government has moved swiftly to place Botswana Meat Commission under the care of a management firm; the move is meant to put the Commission into shape both operationally and financially.
This was disclosed by Finance and Economic Development Minister, Dr Thapelo Matsheka, further stating the BMC is technically insolvent despite having received nearly P1billion as a bailout in recent times. The new management company will run BMC, which is based in Lobatse starting on the 2020/2021 financial year.
The finance minister made it crystal clear that, the move to appoint a caretaker firm for BMC was made to protect the interests of all stakeholders, including farmers. According to Matsheka, the Minister of Agriculture Development and Food Security, Dr Edwin Dikoloti will provide more details on the BMC changes in due course during his committee of supply speech. Government is also proceeding with the conversion of BMC to a company under the Companies Act following the approval of BMC Transition Bill and subsequent repeal of the old Act.
The repealing of the BMC Act has since eliminated the monopoly of the Commission when it comes to beef and cattle export. The repeal has also enabled government to establish a beef regulator which will be responsible for regulating the beef and the cattle sector. “Another aspect of the transition is the ultimate privatization of BMC.
The objective of the privatization of BMC is, among others, to engage the private sector in the ownership and management of the BMC to achieve operational efficiency and profitability, as well as reduce Government’s future financial commitments in the entity. This would be an important process in the transformation of the beef and cattle sector,” noted Matsheka. BMC which is 100 percent owned by government has been operating with losses for many years due to internal and external challenges such as poor supply and Foot and Mouth Disease(FMD).
BSE invite companies for CSD project
Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) has intentions to implement a new Central Securities Depository (CSD) system by the second quarter of next year.
Authorities at the bourse have already put out a call for companies to perform a post migration data verification and quality assessment from the current depository system to a new depository system set to go live in the first half of 2020.“As part of the project, the BSE is to migrate master data and reference data from the current system to the new CSD system,” said BSE in a statement released this week.
According to BSE, the project will include comprehension of the BSE Data Migration Strategy and Plan and data mapping design and rules, review of the data migration ETL processes, data quality verification completeness, accuracy, consistency, definition and scope of data to migrate. In addition, BSE said it will migrate only active or open transactions in the current system to the new system. The scope of open transactions includes active or running corporate actions, active investor accounts, investor account balances above zero, active participants, active issuers and active instruments.
Meanwhile, BSE Chief Executive Officer, Thapelo Tsheole is on record citing that the new CSD system comes with functionalities such as securities borrowing and lending (SBL), management of the settlement guarantee fund, initial public offering (IPO) processing, e-voting for listed entities, repo management and online investor access.
Commenced in the first quarter of 2019, the project is also an integral element of the ongoing single CSD project pioneered by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, Non-Bank Financial Institutions Regulatory Authority and BSE.
The system is also expected to help increase the CSD system ratings by Thomas Murray, an assessment of which will be conducted once the system has been commissioned in early 2020.