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The BDP of President Mokgweetsi Masisi won the election in October with 38 seats - automatically making their candidate president.
Botswana court dismisses challenge to October election result
26 December 2019, 9:49 AM

Botswana’s high court has dismissed petitions filed by the main opposition parties against the election result that returned the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) to a parliamentary majority.

President Mokgweetsi Masisi’s BDP party won the election in October with 38 seats, while the opposition Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) got 15 seats and two smaller parties got four between them.

October’s election was the first time there had been any doubt about whether the long-ruling BDP would return to power, after a spat between Masisi and former President Ian Khama, who backed his rival, seemed to throw the contest open.

“On the face of the petitions, it cannot be deduced that the people or institutions which allegedly committed the corrupt and illegal practices are election or polling agents,” Justice Mercy Garekwe said. “The petitions are therefore a nullity.”

The ruling party has been in power since independence from Britain in 1966.

The country has enjoyed stability and prosperity, thanks to its plentiful and well-managed diamond resources. But its over-reliance on those same diamonds and high unemployment are now major policy challenges for its leaders.

At his swearing-in last month, Masisi promised to drive a transformation of Botswana’s economy that would create more jobs for its 2.2 million people and diversify the economy away from minerals.

One testimony after another revealed shocking details of how billions of taxpayers' money was looted from the state.
2019 Highlights: State Capture Inquiry
26 December 2019, 9:35 AM

 

For most of this year, South Africans were captivated by the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture, chaired by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

One testimony after another revealed shocking details of how billions of taxpayers’ money was looted from the state.

The commission was established following the recommendations of then Public Protector, Thuli Madonsela.

She called for a judicial commission of inquiry to investigate former President Jacob Zuma’s dealings with the Gupta family.

There were shocks, denials and concessions as those in the hot seat gave their side of the story.

SABC News takes a look at some of the highlights and key testimonies.

Watch video below for more:

Playing the first test in Centurion might just be what’s needed for the team to have a good start in the series.
Proteas to clash with England in Boxing Day test match
26 December 2019, 9:16 AM

Proteas captain Faf Du Plessis says for them to be competitive in their four-match series against England, it is going to be important that they get runs on the board.

The first test starts on Thursday at SuperSport Park in Centurion, Gauteng.

Getting runs on the board has been a challenge for the Proteas, with the top-order disappointing in the series against India in October.

Even in the World Cup in England, Du Plessis scored the team’s only century of the tournament in the match against Australia.

The Mphunyelane’s have been surviving by means of hand-outs since the sad passing of their parents.
Helping hand for poverty-stricken family
26 December 2019, 8:54 AM

Good Samaritans have opened their hearts and wallets to help a struggling family of eight living in dire poverty in Section F, a sprawling settlement of Botshabelo, east of Bloemfontein. The goodwill gesture has been extended to the family after their plight was highlighted by the SABC News last Thursday.

Life has been a struggle to the Mphulenyane family, comprising of eight members, all of them males. The youngest is 13 and the oldest is 43 years old. Two of the older brothers are both mentally-ill, which makes it difficult for them to find jobs.

The Mphunyelanes have been surviving by means of hand-outs since the sad passing of their parents.

Kamohelo Makhetha is one of the residents who was taken aback by the unfolding sad events in the Mphulenyane household. Because Christmas Day is the time of sharing and giving, Makhetha says the little he and fellow community members could do was to organise a decent meal for their less fortunate neighbours.

“There are a lot of people here who are homeless. We are going out to a shopping complex around here in Botshabelo and we are going to help these guys with some lunch today.”

And more help came in.

Household necessities such as groceries, clothes and furniture were donated. Added to that, the “Help The Disadvantaged” organisation lived to their name and expectation. The organisation’s Mookho Ranko says the little they could do was to also feed other orphans in the area.

“I feel excited and overwhelmed because we also come from disadvantaged families and helping others, it really brings joy to us seeing that their lives will change.”

A relieved 20-year-old Pitso Mphulenyane had nothing but words of gratitude.

“I want to thank all the people who came to our rescue. As you can see our house has been fitted with windows, beds and good things that we never had. All i can say is thank you.”

More people have pledged to assist the family, including taking some of the minors to school next year.

Watch related video below:

From medicine to recycling, six African start-ups doing business for good in 2019
26 December 2019, 8:00 AM

As Africa tunes into the burgeoning movement of business for good, young people across the continent are finding innovative solutions to problems from illiteracy to pollution.

There are no figures for how many social enterprises have been started across the continent, but the sector is growing with the emergence of tech hubs and accelerators even in the world’s least developed countries, such as Chad.

Here are six African social enterprises that had people talking in 2019:

 1. mPharma

Ghana-based social enterprise mPharma manages prescription inventory for pharmacies to make medicines more affordable for Africans. Started five years ago, the business expanded in 2019 with the purchase of Kenya’s second-biggest pharmacy chain and the launch of new initiatives, including a financing programme for breast cancer treatment in Nigeria.

mPharma won $1.5 million this year from Ebay billionaire Jeff Skoll and plans to eventually supply affordable drugs to public hospitals as well as pharmacies, says founder Gregory Rockson.

2. Easy Solar

Easy Solar provides pay-as-you-go solar-powered lighting and charging systems to people with no electricity access in Sierra Leone. In 2019, the three-year-old company reached 15 of 16 districts in Sierra Leone and expanded to neighboring Liberia.

Founder Nthabiseng Mosia made the Forbes Africa 30 Under 30 list this year, in the category of game-changers in technology. She plans to rapidly grow the company’s reach in 2020, she said, after passing 300 000 users this year.

3. Toolboksi

Started in Tanzania, Toolboksi is an online platform that aims to reduce unemployment in the informal sector by connecting people seeking carpentry, plumping or construction work with local artisans and handymen skilled in those areas.

The two-year-old company has facilitated over 3 000 transactions so far.

In 2019, Toolboksi won Best Social Impact Start-up for its growth this year at the Southern Africa Start-up Awards.

4. SiyaBuddy

SiyaBuddy is a recycling and waste management company in South Africa that aims to create jobs while helping the environment. The start-up buys waste from local collectors, mostly women, and sells it to recycling companies.

SiyaBuddy gained recognition and funding this year when it won the World Export Development Forum young entrepreneurs pitch contest in Ethiopia. Since 2017, it has created 21 jobs and supported over 1 000 waste-pickers.

5. Farmcrowdy

Farmcrowdy is a digital lending platform in Nigeria that connects farmers with small investors who can sponsor them during a season and collect a small return when they harvest. It aims to reduce hunger and poverty by increasing food production.

With over 25,000 small-scale farmers involved, Farmcrowdy has been growing quickly since it launched three years ago. It gained momentum in 2019, winning a number of awards including Africa’s Innovative Business of the Year by the British Awards for African Development.

6. Eco-Warriors

Launched in Mauritius in 2019, Eco-Warriors is a mobile game application that teaches children about climate change and conservation. It includes monthly comic books distributed for free if young players participate in recycling household waste.

Eco-Warriors is a few months old and has won several prizes and the support of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco). It aims to teach sustainability throughout the Indian Ocean region, including in Reunion Island and Madagascar.

What's your Favourite level of Eco-warriors™: Rodrigues Adventures? Comment with your Screenshots!

Posted by Eco-Warriors on Thursday, 17 October 2019

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