Environment Botswana News Archive is a collection of the News chapters appearing in the previous monthly Environment Botswana Newsletters (News from newsletters published in 2002 only).

Please note that the contact details in these pages are not being updated!

The newsletter is brought to you by IUCN Botswana to facilitate the sharing of information of the environment in Botswana. Please note that news and information is what is brought to our attention by our readers and other sources and is not necessary reflecting all environmental news in Botswana. IUCN is not responsible for the factual correctness of the information. Views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of IUCN.

Archive 2002

  • December 2002
  • November 2002
  • October 2002
  • September 2002
  • August 2002
  • July 2002
  • June 2002
  • May 2002
  • April 2002
  • March 2002
  • February 2002
  • January 2002
  • Click here to go to the latest 'Environment Botswana News'.

    December 2002 NEWS

    Batswana have been advised to use natural resources in a sustainable manner in order to prevent their depletion. MP for Lentsweletau warned that reckless use of the resources could precipitate drought and poverty rather than reduce or eradicate them. " Our country is blessed with a wide variety of plants and animals which should be treated as a a heritage that has evolved over millions of years", hes said when officially opening a four-day Kweneng District Conservation held under the theme of "Conservation of natural Resources, our responsibility" at Sojwe. Its objectives were to promote community participation in natural resource conservation, raise awareness on environmental issues and impart participants with environmental conservation methods. General Pheto said government continues to support conservation management and sustainable development of natural resources through mechanisms and institutional frameworks such as the National Conservation Strategy Agency.
    (Botswana Daily News, December 9th, 2002, pg.5)

    The agony of waiting for years to be allocated a plot likely to be a thing of the past if government can adopt recommendations of the Draft Final Report on Botswana National Land Policy. Compiled Natural Resource Services (Pty) Ltd and Land Flow Solutions (Pty) Ltd, the report calls for a land allocation system that is predictable, reliable, consistent and free of delays. In addition it addresses a wide range of issues, including urban management and land use planning, urbanisation and its effects in Botswana, management of peri-urban settlements; land use and physical planning. It has 134 recommendations that seek to eliminate all distortions in land allocation in both urban and rural areas. Also, they are expected to help improve the performance of Ministry of Lands and Housing and its constituent departments, as well as facilitate land-related development programmes of both government and the p[private sector. With regard to land rights, the report suggests that the country's land tenure system must accommodate new rules to cope with changes brought about population and economic growth, transformation of settlement patterns, new land use practices and technology.
    (Botswana Daily News, December 6th, 2002, pg.5)

    On the 17- 18 October 2002, IUCN Botswana held a Land Policy Issues Workshop organized for the Civil Society to make an input in form of submissions and recommendations to the Review of Botswana National Land Policy. The Civil societies noted that land issues are of growing importance in Botswana as pressure on the land and related resources is ever increasing. The Workshop participants indicated that Civil societies should take it upon themselves as the "foot soldiers" of land reform, that the new land policy is fair and good for all. Recommendations were made under the following topics of discussion: Rural Land Issues, Urban Land Issues, Land Rights For Women and other issues. The recommendations made at the end of the workshop are as follows:
    Rural and land issues
    · Recommendation 1: Resource tenure should be decentralised in order to address the management problems associated with open access
    · Recommendation 2: the access of rural poor to land and natural resources should be protected
    · Recommendation 3: In order to address issues of land rights for minorities, the land Policy should include other land use practices in the policy that promotes and improves livelihood strategies that are wildlife and natural resource management based. Relocation and compensation should be closely discussed and agreed with the affected communities. As stated in our constitution the compensation should be "fair, just & prompt".
    · Recommendation 4: Government should actively acquire freehold farms for community allocation to address the problem of skewed land allocation/ownership and shortage of land for communities in some areas i.e Tuli Block area
    Urban Land issues
    · Recommendation 5: Communities should be given joint control over the sustainable management of resources such as sand and other non precious minerals (management rights)
    Recommendations on "Land for the urban poor" were also formulated.
    Land rights for women:
    · Recommendation 6: DOL and other actors [i.e. Women's rights organizations] should proactively raise awareness on women's land rights and establish guidelines. The Department of Lands should.
    Other Recommendations: In view of the crosscutting nature of land issues and the need to harmonize the land policies of different ministries civil society recommends that an Inter-ministerial committee on land should be established and given the overall mandate to oversee the implementation of the land policy [especially areas needing a collaborative effort].

    For more information on the Recommendations formulated during the workshop please read the attached document Land Issues Recommendations.doc
    (IUCN Botswana, iucn@iucnbot.bw)

    Three Southern African leaders signed a treaty to bring into existence the world's largest game park. Presidents Joaquim Chissano (Mozambique), Thabo Mbeki (South Africa) and Robert Mugabe (Zimbabwe) gave their assent to the Great Limpopo National Park, which traverses the borders of the three Countries. The 95,000 Km2 Park joins together the Kruger National Park in South Africa, the Limpopo National Park in Mozambique and the Gonarezhou National Park in Zimbabwe. At a signing ceremony in the Mozambican resort of Xai Xai, Chissano called for an alliance between the states, the private sector and the local communities for the success of the park. This park will differ from traditional ones in that permanent settlements and wildlife will coexist within its boundaries. Chissano said the area, which is rich in natural resources and is home to a wide variety of species could play an important role in job creation and economic development within the three countries. Tourists will be able to cross from one country to another with a single visa. The Kruger and Gonarezhou parks are already operating, so most of the development planning is focussed on the Limpopo Park, where infrastructure and wildlife were almost wiped out during Mozambique's civil war that ended late 1992. The Great Limpopo Park is said to have the potential to become one of Africa's top eco-tourism destination.
    (Mmegi, 13-19 December 2002, pg. B10)

    Zambia is seeking a non-commercial buyer for 17 tonnes of ivory, which has accumulated in its stockpiles since 1992, a wildlife officer said. Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) director general told reporters that the southern African country was looking for a buyer who will not use the ivory for commercial purposes. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) last month rejected Zambia's request to sell the ivory commercially, saying it had not provided sufficient guarantees that it could thwart illegal trafficking. Kabeta also said that once the ivory is sold, part of the proceeds would go to compensating communities that have suffered from elephant trampling their crops or houses. Zambia has a population of 22.000 elephants, but faces a serious problem of poaching leading to massive depleting of animals in national parks.
    (Mmegi, 6th - 12th December, 2002, pg.B13)

    Fonsag informs that as from the 1st of January 2003 it will be operating from Thusano Lefatsheng. The new address will be: Fonsag at Thusano Lefatsheng Trust, Private Bag 00251, Gaborone, Botswana. Tel: ++267/399170, Fax: ++267/399171 email: fonsag@global.bw and the contact person Mr Kevin George.

    Much practical, specialist wildlife information is not published because of the small, dispersed market and the uncertainty of being able to dispose of stock once it is printed. As a result, valuable experience, expertise and advice is not shared as widely as it should be. WildlifeDecisionSupport.com is uniquely positioned to collate such specialist information. Once a publication is identified we will then circulate the opportunity to purchase the publication at a pre-publication special price. Similar opportunities occasionally arise relating to already printed material made available at a special once-off price for a bulk order.
    First opportunity - Capture and Care Manual Reprint run-ons. Following the recent reprint of The Capture and Care Manual a few run-on copies are available on a first-come, first-served basis at a cost of R825 including postage outside Africa R585 including postage in South Africa or R695 including postage for the rest of Africa. For more information on the book visit http://WildlifeDecisionSupport.com/orders.
    Furthermore, The Wildlife Group of the South African Veterinary Association has just released the proceedings from the Symposium "Relocation of Large African Mammals" that was held last year. New techniques and equipment are described. A must for all game capturers, vets, animal keepers and game ranchers. Price: R150.00 / US$17 excluding postage.
    If you would like copies of the above publications, please reply to ranger@wildlifedecisionsupport.com


    November 2002 NEWS

    Regional Phane politics wormed its way into Parliament on Tuesday afternoon courtesy of Tonota MP Pono Moatlhodi. Moatlhodi's constituency has vast swaths of Mophane tree forests, which are habitat of the seasonal phane worms. Through a question directed to the Ministry of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism, Pelonomi Venson, Moatlhodi raised the concern that Zimbabweans "raided" harvesting areas and "scrambled for phane, denying Batswana their right [to harvest]". From Venson answer, it became apparent that South Africans were also competing with Batswana for phane. Venson assured Parliament that the process of drawing up legislation in that direction was already in train. Venson's ministry is putting together a policy on Community-based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) whose purpose is to rationalize the use of all veld products including phane. "The thrust of the policy is the involvement of Batswana in the management of veld resources. The policy will create the framework to implement a permit and licensing structure, and will therefore help regulate access to and introduce controls into harvesting of veld products", Venson said. She also told Parliament that some parts of the Agricultural Resources Conservation Act are to be reviewed in order to address problems pertaining to the use of veld products. "In the interim, the Agricultural Resources Board will closely monitor the harvesting of phane and educate the citizen phane harvesters on sustainable methods of harvesting as well as seek their advice on developing methods which will limit access by foreigners to the resource" the minister said.
    (The Botswana Guardian, November 15th, 2002, pg.5) and respectively (Botswana Daily News, November 14th, 2002, pg. 3)

    Southern African delegates to the 12th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) came out of the talks a disappointed lot. This was after their proposal to be allowed to trade in elephant products were shot down by European and American government delegates supported by their animal rights group and other African countries. Botswana along with Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Zambia sought to amend CITES annotation 604 on elephant populations for the purpose of trading in elephants and elephant products. According to Botswana's Minister of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism, Pelonomi Venson, Botswana specifically sought to be allowed to trade in hunting trophies for non-commercial basis; trade in live animals for commercial purposes; trade in registered stocks of raw ivory of Botswana origin; trade in elephant hides; trade in leather goods for non-commercial purposes and trade in ivory carvings for non-commercial purposes. Briefing parliament Venson said at a pre-conference dialogue of African elephant range States in October, to discuss, among others, the Southern African proposals with the view to obtain a consensus, Botswana's emphasis was on sustainable use of the country's natural resources, in line with the theme of the recent World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD). Venson said the African consensus was reached only after Botswana removed a proposal to trade in worked ivory or ivory carvings, a step she said that was of no significance since Botswana does not have a domestic ivory carving industry. At CITES, in the end, while Botswana failed to win on all its initial proposals, the country was allowed to sell 20 tons of its stockpiled ivory. Venson told parliament that selling will take place after 18 months to allow for adequate preparations, including identification of a CITES-approved buyer. The initial amount of not more than 20 tons of ivory will be followed by annual export quotas of not more than 4 tons from the year 2005 onward. Namibian and South African proposals were also approved while those of Zambia and Zimbabwe were not.
    (The Botswana Gazette, November 20th, 2002, pg. 9) and respectively (Botswana Daily News, November 18th, 2002, pg. 3)

    The disturbing sight of littered roads in Botswana is a national concern, and the Gaborone-Kanye road is no exception. Common litter includes beer cans and bottles, plastic bags, and food containers. This is obviously facilitated by the existence of popular bars along the road and in nearby villages. To most of us, it is easy to see that litter is a menace to society as it degrades human integrity, and threatens human, plant and animal health through exposing them to disease and injury. It is unfortunate that some still do not appreciate the dangers posed by litter.
    Following numerous calls by the First Lady for all Batswana to contribute towards cleaning our environment, Thusano Lefatsheng has started Monthly Clean-Up Campaigns near its premises. The Management and Staff of Thusano Lefatsheng had realized the threats posed by litter to their offices near Mankgodi T-junction, and decided to invest in producing a clean and productive environment along the road passing near them. During these half-day outings, litter is picked for 500 meters on either direction from the organization's entrance gates, which means a stretch of one kilometer is covered. In addition, the residential and warehouse plots are also cleaned.
    The initiative was first undertaken end of October, when refuse totaling sixty (60) bags was collected. In November, only twenty five (25) bags were collected. This may be taken as good news, but given the small distance currently covered by the initiative, it is apparent that there is limited awareness among the general public about the impacts of poor waste management practices. Thusano Lefatsheng has therefore taken upon itself to educate residents between Kolobeng River and Ramaphatle about waste management. Although currently limited by resources, the organization intends to spread its campaign to the villages of Kumakwane, Mankgodi and Ramaphatle. For more information about the initiative, please contact: The General Manager, Thusano Lefatsheng, Private Bag 00251, Gaborone, Tel/Fax: 5999170/1, E-mail: thusanol@info.bw

    Water Affairs station manager, Neo Singo, says Botswana is a semi-arid and drought-prone country, thus making it necessary to conserve water. Singo said water was an essential ingredient for life and development potential for the nation "it is important to carefully plan its development, management and utilisation system". She said assessment and development of water resources in Botswana was costly, mainly "due to flat topography leading to poor dam site and high evaporation rates", environmental constraints in some areas, very low recharge rates for ground water and saline water in much of the western corridor of the country. Singo said there was, therefore, need for planning tools and measures to utilise the scarce water resources in most beneficial and optimal ways and adopting technical measures to cut losses and boost efficiency in water use. The Department of Water Affairs aims to work with other organisations, agencies and individuals to help to save the nation's precious resource.
    (Botswana Daily News, November 11th, 2002, pg. 2)

    Forecast summary: This seasonal forecast was derived using statistical models for the past three years as well as studying the likely effect that the steadily evolving El Nino might have on our weather. Rainfall regions for the first part of the season i.e. October, November, December and the second part of the season i.e. January, February, March are each divided in three regions. Generally for October, November, December the country is expected to experience normal rainfall with a tendency towards below normal in the eastern parts (Northeast, Southern central, Southeast, Kgatleng and most of Kweneng and Southern Districts). For January, February and March the Kgalagadi and some parts of Gantsi District will experience normal to below normal rainfall, while the rest of the country is expected to have normal rainfall. More information is included in the article in particular figures on "Expected rainfall outlook for each region during October, November, December" and "Expected rainfall for each region during January, February, March". Careful utilisation of this information is highly recommended, as seasonal forecasts do not provide the temporal distribution of the rainfall within a forecast period. Local and month-to-month variations may occur. Users are advised to contact the Department of Meteorological Services for monthly updates and evaluation.
    (Botswana Daily News, November 1st, 2002, pg. 4)

    A two-day regional workshop on Policy Formulation and Implementation Processes in Southern Africa was held on July 9 and 10 2002 at the Randburg Towers Hotel, Johannesburg, South Africa as part of the Regional Networking and Capacity Building Programme (NETCAB), which is co-ordinated by IUCN-Harare in Zimbabwe.
    NETCAB was launched in October 1995 through a collaborative agreement between USAID's Regional Centre for Southern Africa (USAID/RCSA) and IUCN's Regional Office for Southern Africa (IUCN-ROSA). The objective of NETCAB is to enhance the capacity of southern Africa's government institutions and NGOs to address environmental policy and management issues relevant to increasing natural resource productivity through co-ordinated regional initiatives and networks. Capacity-building is supposed to be at all levels (community, NGOs, national and regional).
    The programme has a number of specified inputs and outputs, responsibilities for which are divided between institutions in the region. The Regional Workshop on Policy Formulation and Implementation Processes in Southern Africa falls under the organisation's Regional Policy Programme. IUCN-ROSA had commissioned six case studies to assess the policy formulation and implementation processes in Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Workshops were held with key stakeholders to discuss the case study findings and to formulate recommendations on how policy formulation processes could be made more effective.
    The studies focused on the level of stakeholder involvement in the development of the following policies: Botswana: National Conservation Strategy; Mozambique: Natural Resource Management policies; Malawi: Forestry Policy Act 1997; South Africa: National Environmental Management Act; Zambia: Wetland Strategy and Action Programme; Zimbabwe: Environmental Management Bill.
    The Johannesburg workshop brought together 32 key stakeholders in the policy formulation and implementation process from Southern Africa, including experts, representatives from civil society and industry, government personnel and IUCN. The main objectives of the workshop were: To share experiences and lessons from the six case studies and from other countries in the region among governments, NGOs, community representatives and the private sector. To develop recommendations on how to influence national and regional policy formulation processes so that they are more effective and inclusive.
    To view the "Proceedings of the Regional Workshop held at Randburg Towers, Johannesburg, South Africa: 9 -10 July, 2002" please click on the following Proceedings of the Regional Workshop


    October 2002 NEWS

    Environment, trade and Tourism Minister, Pelonomi Venson was in Brussels to drum up international support to sell raw ivory, despite a ban aimed at protecting endangered elephants. Botswana and four of the 14 members of the SADC want to sell about 80 tonnes of ivory, arguing that their elephant populations are so large that they are causing environmental damage and destroying vegetation other animals need to survive on. "We have reached a consensus at the SADC head of state summit to support member states and what we need to do now is talk to countries outside the region, especially those who are opposed to the proposal" SADC executive Secretary P. Ramsamy told at a press conference. The move is opposed by countries like Kenya, which have yet to recover from massive poaching in the 1960s and 1970s. The Convention on International Trade on Endangered Species (CITES) is due to consider the Botswana proposal at its November 3rd-15th Conference in Santiago del Chile, Chile. Botswana and Namibia won permission from CITES in 1999 to sell 60 tonnes of their ivory stockpiles, mainly top Japan.
    (The Botswana Guardian, October 11th, 2002, pg. 7)

    Also Botswana's Civil Society is trying to make a difference at CITES. A Conservation Officer of KCS (Kalahari Conservation Society) and a community member from the Chobe Enclave Conservation Trust will be attending the Conference of the Parties to be held in Santiago de Chile from the 3rd-18th of November. During the last few months effort of the CBNRM Support Programme has gone into a series of short articles on why the Botswana Proposal on Elephants should be supported by all the participants at CITES. Briefs were send to all relevant embassies and national/international newspapers in an attempt to properly inform on how important the elephant resource is to Botswana's communities and how well Botswana has been able to manage the elephant population since the 80ties (40.000 elephants in 1980-120.000 elephants in 2001). For more information please also visit the CBNRM website at www.cbnrm.bw.
    (CBNRM Support Programme, October 2002)

    Department of Wildlife and National Parks will spend P30 million to fence Makgadikgadi National Park in a bid to prevent wild animals from devouring livestock form nearby cattle post. Minister of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism, Pelonomi Venson told residents of some villages in Boteti Sub-district, that the project will go to tender in December, while construction is scheduled between March and April next year. The minister informed meetings in Khumaga, Moreomaoto, Rakops and Mopipi villages, that the boundary of the fence will be at Seokwane cattle post near Rakops Village instead of Tsoi cattle post.
    (Daily News, October 28th, 2002, pg. 2)

    The Kalahari Conservation Society (KCS) has financed research and education projects with more than P15 million during its 20 years of existence. Mr Nchindo, chairperson of KCS, said KCS is a product of the spirit of volunteerism and patriotism to Botswana. He said KCS has worked with government and other institutions on conservation related activities. These include management plans for Chobe National Park and Moremi Game Reserve; the management plan for the Gaborone Game Reserve; the establishment of the Harry Oppenheimer Okavango Research centre; fund raising for the Khama Rhino Sanctuary and the Nata Bird Sanctuary. A trans-boundary community conservation project called "Every River has Its People" for the Okavango River basins are among KCS on-going projects. With the above mentioned project KCS intends to promote community participation in the management of the Okavango River Basin, which Nchindo defined as great trendsetter for the region. Nchindo also said the departure of donors from Botswana because it is a middle income country could result in some non-governmental organisation closing down. "We need to develop strategies to assist NGOs", he said. "I have been informed that the government is open to negotiations on this issue and this is encouraging."
    (Daily News, October 22nd, 2002, pg. 3)

    African and European researchers have launched an ambitious international 'information mobilisation' project in Nairobi, to disclose the existing knowledge of useful plants of tropical Africa. The project focuses on promoting plant resources as a basis for sustainable land-use. It is committed to the conservation of biodiversity and rural development of tropical Africa. At the first Plant Resources of Tropical Africa (PROTA) workshop, held in Nairobi, Dr S. Kakakhel (deputy executive director of UNEP) said, "Africa holds more than 25% of the worlds biodiversity. It is a tragic paradox that marginal agriculture forms the greatest threat to biodiversity, while diversity could be on the basis of sustainable development". During the next 10 years the researchers will survey and critically review existing knowledge on an estimated 7000 useful plant species. The project will limit itself to the Africana countries and islands between the tropics of cancer and Capricorn excluding Morocco, West-Sahara, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Egypt, South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland. At the workshop in Kenya a Precursor handbook was presented. It deals with 39 samples from 16 commodity groups, for example West-African okra, Ethiopian cardamom, African rice, morula, raphia palm, sausage tree etc. Information on these sample species and on the project are available on the PROTA website www.prota.org.
    (The Botswana Gazette, 23rd October 2002, pg. E3)

    Botswana and South Africa share a unique relationship that has not been forged anywhere in the world as exemplified in the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park. South African minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism, Valli Moosa, said at a business breakfast to mark "South Africa Week" in Gaborone: "In 2000, Botswana and South Africa made history when our presidents formally opened the first Transfrontier Park in Southern Africa, the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, also opening a new economic gate for SADC as a whole….By establishing the Park Botswana and South Africa stand to benefit through guaranteeing the long-term conservation of the valuable wildlife resources in the southern Kalahari, thus helping to maintain the integrity of the entire Kalahari ecosystem". Another exciting initiative involving the two countries and other SADC partners is a multi-country Coast-to-Coast Tourism Initiative, which is set to significantly boost Africa's global status as a unique tourism continent. Coast-to-Coast is a 3000Km stretch connecting the Indian Ocean from Maputo, Mozambique to the Atlantic in Walvis Bay, Namibia. Tourists could travel the distance crossing Swaziland, South Africa and Botswana.
    (Daily News, October 11th, 2002, pg. 3)

    Gantsi Craft Trust has been given a grant totalling P159180 to chart out long-term development path that track into cognisance the issue of financial and organisational sustainability. In addition the trust will develop a sound marketing strategy for San crafts, in order to ensure its long-term business viability. The vision that motivated the creation of the organisation was the plight of the San communities and the interest in promoting their social and economic empowerment. Through effective business strategies, capacity building, technical training and awareness building strategies, it seeks to contribute to the empowerment of Basarwa communities to take charge of their own development. With the ADF/GOB funding, Gantsi Craft Trust is assisted to carry out the following capacity building endeavour: Participatory Needs Assessments and Strategic Planning Workshops; Organisational review and development of a 5-year organisational strategy; Organisational sustainability planning; market study and project auditing.
    (The Business section of Mmegi, 25-31 October 2002, pg. B20)

    Veld Product Research and Development (VPR&D) has received P549000 grant form the African Development Foundation to help rural farmers to start commercial guinea fowl production. Through the project VPR&D intends to develop the needed technical expertise in Botswana and demonstrate the economic viability of the enterprise. The project will also serve to identify and test potential products, markets and marketing channels. By the end of the project VPR&D hopes to develop a business plan for further development of the sector. Target groups are the less advantaged rural communities.
    (Daily News, October 10th, 2002, pg. 3)

    The Forestry Association of Botswana relocated to Kumakwane village, along the Kanye Gaborone Highway on the right just before Kolobeng River Bridge if you are coming from Gaborone.
    The contact details have also changed due to this relocation, and they are as follows:
    Telephone / Fax number: (+267) 5998018
    Postal Address: P. O. Box 21456, Bontleng, Botswana
    E-mail Address: fab@info.bw (still the same)
    Physical Address: Kanye-Gaborone Highway just before Kolobeng River, Kumakwane village.

    Gender mainstreaming in integrated water resource management
    The IIAV is part of the Gender and Water Alliance. Their task within the Alliance is to collect information on the successes and failures in gender mainstreaming in integrated water resource management. In a large international project, the IIAV and its partners have organized an e-conference from January till September 2002) in four languages, each with its own mailing list (English, French, Spanish and Portuguese). The information will feed into the advocacy work of the Gender and Water Alliance, into grass roots activism and into the Third World Water Forum in Kyoto in 2003.
    Synthesis reports of the e-conference "Successes and failures in gender mainstreaming in integrated water resources management" are available at:
    The conference dossier of the "international conference sustainable development and water in an international gender perspective" (Rotterdam 2000) is available online .


    September 2002 NEWS

    The Government of Botswana and the World Conservation Union have signed a letter of intent toward the development and implementation of the Okavango Management Plan. The Minister of Lands, Housing and Environment, Jacob Nkate, who signed on behalf of Botswana said during the ceremony that as custodians of the largest Ramsar Site, the government was committed and obliged to preserve or even restore the delta to some of its original beauty. He said an integrated management strategy was vital to preserve the delta as the backbone of the country's tourism industry, which has become an alternative engine of economic growth. Not only is the delta home to various species of flora and fauna, it is also a source of livelihood for thousand of people, he said. Achim Steiner, the director general of IUCN, said the agreement demonstrated that there could be co-operation on water management without North/South divide. He said water was tied to sustainable development as populations needed to be provided with the resource. The letter of intent is to create a board framework of cooperation in development and implementation of the Okavango Management Plan. According to the letter Botswana will oversee the preparation of the project in consultation with other stakeholders by facilitating, coordinating and supervising the planning process. The IUCN will provide technical staff and also assist in the preparation of the integrated resource management for the delta's long-term conservation and ensure that its resources are sustained for future and present use.
    (Daily News, September 6th, 2002, pg. 1)

    The Botswana government and the World Conservation Union (locally known as IUCN) have signed an agreement to work together on improving management of water resources. This agreement will be carried out under the umbrella of IUCN Water and Nature Initiative. The government and IUCN will work closely together on the management of the Okavango Delta.
    This partnership was presented in the context of the World Summit for Sustainable Development, and signifies a concrete commitment to find solutions to the looming water crisis. In the Okavango Basin, the initiative is developing a management plan in consultation with all stakeholders to set the path for the development of the region. It is hoped that this path maintains the ecosystem so that users may continue to reap its immense benefits.
    The project is a partnership between local authorities, NGOs, the Botswana Government, private sector (tourism enterprises) and the Delta communities. The planning exercise will directly contribute to Okavango Commission's endeavour to develop a basin wide management regime.
    The Minister of Lands, Housing and the Environment, Jacob Nkate, who signed the agreement on behalf of the Botswana government during the ceremony said," The Okavango Delta is more than beautiful: it provides a major source of income for the country, the delta communities and indeed the individual residents. It is hard to imagine Botswana without the Okavango Delta. Indeed for many, Botswana is the Okavango Delta. We have a responsibility as the government and the people of Botswana, together with our development partners, to make sure that this amazing resource is utilised in a sustainable and responsible manner".
    The signing of the agreement is an expression of the parties' recognition of the importance of healthy ecosystem as the basis for livelihoods and of improved ecosystem and water management for reducing poverty and creating prosperity. These were the two main issues under debate in Johannesburg.
    Apart from the Botswana government and IUCN WANI, there are other donors who will be involved in the funding of the project and these are SIDA, DED,DANIDA. The Initiative consists of 28 projects in over 40 countries, with 7 demonstration basins where the ecosystem approach will be put into practice and 21 supporting projects on governance, participation and finance. It is hoped that it will bring together organisations from the global to the local level to maintain healthy ecosystems.
    (IUCN Press release, September 2002)

    The new Ministries portfolio includes:
    Environmental policy and management; Forestry; Meteorological Services; Research permits (sector specific); Tourism development and Wildlife. Statutory authorities supervised by the ministry and other organisations with portfolio responsibilities related to the ministry are: Agricultural Resources Board, Botswana Wildlife Training Institute, National Conservation Strategy Agency, National Conservation Strategy Board, Tourism Board.
    The Minister of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism is Minister Pelonomi Venson
    (Government Gazette, Extraordinary, Vol. XL, NO.59, Gaborone, 6th September 2002, pg.3220)

    The UNDP Global Environmental Facility - Small Grants Programme (GEF-SGP) has recently funded a project, executed by the Birdlife Botswana Crane Working Group to monitor numbers, distribution, breeding success and promote community involvement in the conservation of Wattled Cranes (Mogolodi) in the Okavango Delta.
    The BirdLife Botswana Crane Working Group (BLBCWG) networks with major institutions concerned with crane and wetland conservation in the country, and provides an opportunity for interested and concerned citizens to contribute to conservation initiatives. It is currently volunteer-run and based in Maun. After only one year of operation, the CWG has proved to be a committed and effective organisation. In August 2001, the BLBCWG completed the first ever, comprehensive survey of Wattled Cranes in the Okavango Delta. This formed part of a subcontinent-wide survey of Wattled Cranes co-ordinated by the International Crane Foundation (ICF) and the South African Crane Working Group (SACWG). The Okavango survey revealed that the Botswana population of Wattled Cranes is approximately 1,220 - somewhat less than the 1,400 to 3,500 previously estimated for the country (Urban, 1996). Nevertheless, it is now clear that the Okavango Delta supports the largest single population of Wattled Cranes in Africa.
    The objective of the project is to support capacity development and training of BirdLife Botswana Crane Working Group members; to monitor the numbers and distribution of the Wattled Crane in the Okavango Delta; to monitor the breeding success of the Wattled Crane in the Okavango Delta; to explore and implement effective means to ensure community participation in conserving and monitoring the Wattled Crane; to network with and disseminate information to existing organizations and conservation programmes in the Okavango Delta.
    The Wattled Crane is a globally threatened water bird distributed across 11 range countries. The principle threat facing the species is the loss, transformation, and degradation of wetland habitat. Recent surveys in countries that were long-thought to be the stronghold for Wattled Cranes - Botswana, Mozambique, Tanzania, and especially Zambia - suggest significant declines in the population of Wattled Cranes over the past 20 years and highlight the need to conduct ongoing survey work to cover all range countries.
    Until recently there has been no concerted effort to accurately establish the population status of Wattled Cranes or other large waterbirds in Botswana. With the formation of the BirdLife Botswana Crane Working Group this has all changed.
    It is often asked why BLB chose to be involved with Wattled Cranes. Research work in Mozambique has demonstrated a clear link between the breeding success of the Wattled Crane and the diversity and productivity of a wetland system, and the impact of altered flooding. The distribution of Wattled Cranes is closely tied to a tuber-growing sedge, which is their main food source. Seasonal flooding patterns control the annual cycle of the tubers' growth and production. Where hydrological conditions remain relatively untouched, the tubers growth is evident, as are Wattled Cranes, and where hydrological conditions are affected by factors such as contamination by chemicals, channel-clearing, nutrient seepage from tourist camps, the tubers' growth is affected. This impacts directly on the presence of Wattled Cranes in the area.
    Over the last few years, pollution, introduced species, low flood levels, fishing, a growing tourism industry, increasing local populations and widespread insecticide spraying are increasingly impacting the aquatic ecosystems of the Okavango Delta, creating an urgent need to assess the aquatic ecosystem throughout the Delta (Conservation International, 2000). The Wattled Cranes can serve as an indicator species confirming the healthy hydrology and productivity of the Okavango. The fact that the Okavango Delta has the largest single population of this species is an indication that this wetland is still relatively pristine, and it is the aim of the Crane Working Group to ensure that it stays that way.
    (Botswana Crane Working Group, September 2002)

    Mr Menezu Roberto, project manager of the Environmental Working Group (GTA) of Mozambique said his organisation is implementing GTZ-funded CBNRM projects in Mabalane District of the Gaza Province. Mabalane District is near Coutada 16 Hunting Area, which is now part of the historic 50.000Km2 Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park. "We are implementing the sustainable use of forests in Mabalane" and that CBNRM had resulted in greater conservation of natural resources in the District, he said. With greater control of their natural resources, Mabalane District residents are now realising more benefits from the sale of charcoal, timber and trophy hunts. Communities are now confident in developing and implementing natural resource management plans. For example they are able to set their own hunting quotas. Elsewhere, GTA now faces a new challenge involving the communities that are being moved from Quotada 16 to Mabalane District, to allow implementation of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park. The people from Quotada 16 have not yet been exposed to CBNRM approaches. They are involved in unsustainable harvesting of natural resources such as poaching. It is against this background that GTA has called for the need to teach communities to reduce pressure on the environment and warned against the destructive practices of harvesting natural resources.
    (Africa Resources for development, Newsletter of the SADC Natural Resource Management Programme, Issue n.10, June 2002, pg.3)

    The South African Government is working towards introducing a formal CBNRM policy next year, before the 2003 World Parks Congress to be held in Durban, South Africa, said Dr. Hector Magome, director of South Africa National Parks Conservation Services. He said they have been working towards introducing a CBNRM policy for the Southern African country for the past two years. Mr Julien Sturgeon, national manager of South Africa's Department of Environmental Affairs responsible for the special development tourism and related initiatives said South Africa's CBNRM policy is not formal, but is embedded in a range of existing environmental acts. Dr Magome, said the main reason why there was a delay in introducing CBNRM in SA is because there are limited forestry areas in the Eastern Cape, areas like Punda Land and Dwesa Cwebe. He said although there were opportunities for forestry development around Mpumalanga for the communities, the potential areas were either under state control or private ownership and "this is where the source of conflict is".
    (Africa Resources for development, Newsletter of the SADC Natural Resource Management Programme, Issue n.10, June 2002, pg.7)

    1. We, the representatives of African Civil Society Organisations/NGOs, meeting during the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa from August 26 - 4 September 2002 reaffirm our demand for and commitment to the achievement of equitable sustainable development in Africa.
    2. The Rio Summit marked the international commitment to providing political, financial and technological support for its vision of achieving the interlinked goals of human centered, environmentally sustainable and culturally sensitive development, and, poverty reduction.
    3. A decade later, it is evident that the state of development situation, particularly poverty, in Africa has worsened. There has been an insufficient commitment by African governments to the ideals of Rio and inadequate financial and technological support by development partners for Africa's development priorities. The capacity of the people of Africa to lift themselves out of poverty, food insecurity and illiteracy has been undermined by many factors, including declining levels and terms of trade, increasing debt burden, declining Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) and private investment flows, increasing marginalisation in world relations from globalization, unfavorable prescriptive donor policies, environmental deterioration, partly from increased exploitation of the natural resource base of the continent, HIV/AIDS prevalence, and, armed conflicts and wars.
    4. We resolve to fully utilize the opportunity offered by the Johannesburg Commitment on Sustainable Development to work towards ensuring urgent and renewed commitment, by African Governments and Development partners, backed by time-bound implementation actions, monitorable deliverable and identified sources and levels of resources, that will assure the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and Targets in Africa and accelerate the realization of our sustainable development vision for Africa within the next ten years.
    5. We, the civil society organizations of Africa, envision an African society, characterized by unity in diversity, equality and equity, that guarantees the fundamental needs of its people, is participatory and accommodates the interests of all stakeholders in decision-making processes, including the empowerment of women, youth and children in all areas, and ensures democracy and human rights and in which poverty is reduced to a minimal level through knowledge-based, culture-based and people-centered development that is environmentally, socially and economically sustainable.
    6. We recognize the UN Secretary-General's WEHAB initiative as a contribution to the Draft Plan of Implementation of the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) which it seeks to provide focus and impetus to action in the key thematic areas of Water, Energy, Health, Agriculture and Biodiversity that are integral to a coherent global approach to the implementation of sustainable development.
    7. We call for clear processes and transparent working criteria to be defined and adopted through participation of all stakeholders in the implementation of partnerships emerging from the Johannesburg Summit.
    8. We urge all Governments, especially African Governments to commit themselves to the challenges posed in "The Earth Charter".
    9. We acknowledge that for the WSSD to ensure the achievement of our vision of Africa stated above, it should address the following key issues: (a) poverty eradication; (b) emergence of African regional groupings and alliances including the African Union (AU), and the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD); (c) human resource development (d) education, (e) health (f) combating HIV/AIDS; TB, Malaria and avoidable diseases of poverty (g) Africa and globalisation; (h) sustainable agriculture and food security; (i) water and sanitation; (j) responsible natural resource management, (k) desertification and land degradation; (l) energy; (m) science and technology; (n) democratic governance; (o) rule of law, respect for human rights and freedoms (p) gender equity and equality (q) armed conflict and warfare (r) and ending of armed conflict and proliferation of small arms, (s) peace, (t) indigenous knowledge, (u) legal recognition of the rights of local communities.
    10. We call for a commitment by all governments to reach agreement for a timetable for the phasing out of harmful subsidies for fossil fuels and agree on targets and timeframes for increasing the share of renewable energy in the energy supply in Africa.
    11. We recognize that achieving our sustainable development goals requires a supportive international environment, particularly in the areas of macro-economic policy making, market access and fair trade, debt cancellation, ODA and conditions for leveraging private capital flows, human development, technology transfer, capacity development and full implementation of multilateral environmental and sustainable development Conventions and their Protocols.
    12. We recognise that while globalisation may bring new opportunities and challenges for sustainable development in Africa, the uneven distribution of wealth further marginalizes the continent. We demand that, where such benefits do accrue, the grassroots communities should be the main beneficiaries.
    13. We reaffirm our engagement with NEPAD, despite our insufficient and inadequate level of involvement in its formulation, and urge African leaders to partner with African Civil Society Organisations in all processes for its refinement, implementation and monitoring. We urge that NEPAD does not replicate Structural Adjustment Programmes (SAPs), which have increased poverty and inequality on the Continent.
    14. We acknowledge that peace is a pre-requisite for sustainable development and call on African governments and the international community to adopt measures at the Summit to ensure a peaceful and stable environment for Africa's Sustainable Development.
    15. We reaffirm that sustainable development requires active participation of women and men on equal footing and at all levels of decision-making, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. We call for the integration of gender equity and equality in all activities encompassed within Agenda 21, the Millennium Development Goals and the Johannesburg Commitment on Sustainable Development.
    16. We reaffirm the unconditional need for African governments themselves to initiate appropriate steps to ensure democratic good governance based on popular participation as a major prerequisite for sustainable development.
    17. We, Africa Civil Society Organizations, commit ourselves as partners in the implementation and monitoring of Agenda 21, the Millennium Development Goals, and the Johannesburg Commitment on Sustainable Development through existing and new African Regional, National and Local CSOs/NGOs Coalitions on Sustainable Development.
    (Circulated by NESDA on behalf of the African Steering Committee, dated this Thursday, 04 September 2002 in Johannesburg.)

    Early on Tuesday morning, September 3rd, (3:45am), KRST received the first black (hook-lipped) rhino to return to Botswana. She is a female - about 20 years old - in the prime of her life. The Rhino was captured by the Department of Wildlife and National Parks and the Botswana Defence Force and was then escorted to Khama Rhino Sanctuary! For the time being, she is kept in a "boma" or enclosure (built of posts almost as thick as telephone poles), where she is being monitored day and night and will not be released into the Sanctuary until more about her is known. Khama Rhino Sanctuary also has some newly born white rhinos, bringing the number of white rhino to a total of 21. This successful breeding indicates that the rhinos are happy in their surroundings and that their welfare is being managed correctly. Furthermore, Fourteen warthogs have been released on Sunday, Sept 8th. They had been captured during an event at the Orapa Game Park and were transported immediately to Khama Rhino Sanctuary, where they were released in the presence of three of the white rhinos at Malema's Pan.
    (Khama Rhino Sanctuary, September 2002)

    The eclipse of the sun that the northern part of Botswana is expected to experience in the first week of December is bound to bring a lot of business to the tourism industry, and those in the business are already gearing themselves up for the day. Nata Leisure and Tourism village, which is situated where the eclipse will be seen, is one of those citizen owned businesses, which is putting everything in place to reap from this historical experience. Paul Ramaloko, manager of the village explains that they are hard at work organising entertainment activities for people expected to flock to the place. Information reaching the Botswana Guardian indicates that tourism sites in areas, which will experience the eclipse, are daily registering bookings for the day. Moremi Game Reserve and Chobe National Park are so far leading in registering tourists coming for the eclipse.
    (The Midweek Sun, September 18th, 2002, pg.27)

    Government is planning to construct proper sanitary landfills in towns and big villages to improve waste management in the country. Officiating at the Kgalagadi Intra District Council Village Health Committee choir competitions at Werda, Frank Molaletsi, environmental health Officer for Gaborone City Council, said the facilities will have areas for sorting waste. The purpose of doing so will be to select materials that can be recycled or reused as a way of giving earth a chance by reducing depletion of natural resources. Molaletsi explained that the construction of the Tshabong landfill has started and is expected to be operational by May 2003. He said the three pillars of sustainable development comprise economic growth, social development and environmental protection. The global theme for this year World Environment Day is: "Giving earth a chance" which calls on countries to put issues and activities that promote sustainable development at the forefront. The cleanest village title this year was won by Strizendam, Kolonkwaneng scooped the prize for the cleanest medium village, while Makopong came top in the big villages category.
    (Daily News, August 29th, 2002, pg. 2)

    A series of workshop for the training of local authorities on legislation and policies affecting CBNRM in Botswana have been held in Maun and Ghanzi. These workshops have been funded through the IUCN ROSA Policy Programme, they have been coordinated by the IUCN Botswana office and facilitated by private consultants and the PTB Ghanzi office. The objective of the workshops was to build the capacity, knowledge and skills of personnel whiting the CBNRM in one specific core area of environmental law that affects natural resources. The first series of workshop were held in Maun and was developed in 2 modules: Module I for decision-makers (24th -26th July 2002), this first module targeted Councillors, Tribal Administration and Land Board members, and gathered 8 participants. Module II for planning and technical assistance staff (29th -31st July 2002)- had congregated a group of 15 planning and relevant technical assistant staff of District Council, Land Board and District Administration. Both modules were satisfactorily developed, and well appreciated by the participants.
    Following one of the recommendations of the previous workshops held in Maun, a single module workshop was developed and held in Ghanzi on 5th-6th September. The workshop brought together decision makers, technical assistants and planers from local government who with their enthusiastic participation made of this a productive and interesting gathering.
    All the reports and final Training Manuals are in process and should be available soon.
    For more information please contact E-Sofia Figueroa at the IUCN Botswana office Tel/Fax 3971584 or iucn@iucnbot.bw.


    August 2002 NEWS

    Once inhabiting the entire continent the king of Africa's mammals is set to disappear from all but the south and east environmentalists warn. Already exterminated in Northern Africa, lion populations in West and Central Africa seem to small to secure predator's survival there. Eastern and Southern Africa, with its extensive protected areas and strict conservation regimes, are the only areas where the survival of lions seems secured. According to studies published in "New Scientist" and "Science", the lions' reproduction efforts are jeopardised in other parts of the African continent. Data produced by a study led by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) showed that there did not exist any lion population in West and Central Africa, big enough to secure long time survival. Biologists assessed that a population of between 500 and 1000 animals is necessary to safeguard the long-term survival of lions in an area. Even the biggest populations in West and Central Africa are far below the estimated minimum size. These include an isolated population in Bouba Ndjida in Northern Cameroon and another population in the Fouta Jallon highlands on the border between Senegal, Guinea and Mali. Both populations are estimated at some 200 animals and human settlements are constantly encroaching on their habitat.
    (The Botswana Gazette, 28th August 2002, pg.11)

    The availability of water in Botswana is rapidly becoming the single most serious limitating factor to economic development in the country, says minister of minerals, energy and water affairs, Boometswe Mokgothu. Mokgothu was officially launching the water conservation education campaign dubbed "Thothi" in Gaborone. The launch marked the beginning of a very aggressive water conservation campaign. Botswana's first national water conservation plan which was completed in 1992 identified water conservation as an issue of great importance in Botswana because of its limited water resources and high cost of development. Thoti, which literally means a drop, is part of the recommendations of the plan and is jointly funded by Danish and Botswana governments. The overall aim of the project is the development and management of Botswana's water in equitable, economic and social manner, without compromising the sustainability of the resource and the vital ecosystems it supports.
    (The Botswana Guardian, 23rd August 2002, pg.32)

    Okavango MP, Joseph Kavindama, has advised residents of Kauxwi, Xakao, Ngarange, Mogotho and Sekondomboro to form a community wildlife management trust. Addressing a series of kgotla meetings in his constituency, Kavindama said that way they would be given an area to manage and generate revenues from game trophies and licenses. Kavindama also urged the youth to utilise government assistance schemes to open businesses. He stated that a programme such as CEDA was suited to set up businesses operations in rural areas and avoid migration to towns.
    (Botswana Daily News, 26th August 2002, pg. 5)

    The devil's claw (Harpagophytum spp.) is indigenous to the arid Savannah areas of Botswana, Namibia and the Republic of South Africa. It has significant medicinal properties and a substantial trade in dried plant tubers currently takes place from Botswana, Namibia and South Africa. The indigenous San and Khoi peoples of Southern Africa have used devil's claw tuber for medical purposes for centuries. European s discovered the tuber's medicinal properties from local people in 1907, and since 1962 this plant has been exported to Europe and used in the production of herbal medicines to treat mainly arthritis and rheumatism. A marked increase in export levels of the devil's claw to Europe over the past five years and a number of reports of populations being severely reduced by unsustainable harvesting practices led Germany to submit a proposal to include the genus Harpagophytum in CITES Appendix II, but the proposal did not sufficiently address the social and economic impacts that such a listing would have. The range States Botswana, Namibia and South Africa opposed the listing, and the Conference of the Parties instead adoption Decisions 11.63 and 11.111. These Decisions called on range and importing States to submit all available information concerning the trade, management and biological status of Harpagophytum species, regulatory measures applying to them, and directed the Plants Committee to review the information, summarise the biological and trade status of the species subject to international trade, and prepare a report for consideration at the 12th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (to be held in Santiago del Chile from 3 to 15 November 2002). The case of the devil's claw is unusual for CITES as the species trade has a life long history that makes it predisposed to sustainable harvesting from the wild (fast growing secondary tubers are harvested and these are not required for plant recovery). It provides a form of land use in the arid Kalahari that is non-destructive, and is the only means of survival for thousands of rural people. Often the listing of plants on the CITES Appendices drives the trade to reliance on cultivated material. Should this happen with the devil's claw, it would endanger the livelihoods of these rural poor. For more information on CITES please visit the website at www.cites.org
    (CITES World Official Newsletter of the parties, July 2002, pg.11)

    The African Protected Areas Initiative (APAI) idea was to first mooted during the Convention on Biological Diversity at UNEP, Nairobi, in Kenya in May 2000. Protected areas are the principal means for conserving biodiversity in Africa, with over two million square kilometres (circa 9% of the land area) set aside for this purpose. The APAI Workshop was held in Nairobi, from July 22-24, 2002 with financial assistance of the GEF/UNEP and Conservation International. Distinguished experts from 23 countries across Africa were joined by representatives from international and national non-governmental organisations including WWF, CI and IUCN. The multilateral agencies, GEF/UNDP and the World Bank were also represented. The meeting was called to facilitate dialogue between experts from different countries and institutions in Africa, to share views and experiences on the challenges facing protected areas and to build consensus on the way forward. The main outcomes of the workshop were: besides defining issues related to APAI's internal operating system, APAI was formally launched as a Pan-African process with a proposal that it operates under the Algiers Convention and the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD); an APAI vision was developed; a list of priority protected areas issues to be addressed through APAI was identified; a statement addressed to the WSSD urging African governments and other stakeholders to give protected areas the highest level of political and financial support was prepared. For more information and details please contact hkk@iucnearo.org
    (by Humphrey Kisioh, National Park International Bulletin, August 2002, pg.16)

    A warning that South Africa's biodiversity status is "sliding down an unsustainable path" is contained in a report published by the Green Trust, a subsidiary of WWF South Africa in partnership with Nedbank Green, and the Endangered Wildlife Trust. The Biodiversity of South Africa 2002, Trends, Indicators, Human Impacts uses a conceptual index in which the environmental pressures caused by the average per capita consumption of natural resources, and resultant waste, is expressed in terms of global hectares of biologically productive space. This indicates that on average South Africans consume four global hectares per capita per annum, whereas the country's biologically productive capacity is only 2.4 global hectares per capita per annum. These figures compare with a worldwide average consumption of 2.8 global hectares against available 2.2 hectares of biologically productive space. The report indicates that South Africa's current consumption of renewable resources far exceeds its domestic replacement capacity and that doubling of the country's population over the past 30 years has resulted in a halving of the amount of biological resources available to each person. The impacts of this are widespread, not just for the natural flora and fauna of the country but also from a human capacity perspective, especially in the fight against poverty.
    (National Park International Bulletin, August 2002, pg. 22)

    A US Wildlife Conservation Society scientist working in the Udzungwa Mountain National Park has rediscovered a carnivore that has remained undetected for the last 70 years. Captured on film by a camera trap, the Lowe's servaline genet, a 90 cm long relative of the mongoose family, was previously known only from a single skin collected in 1932. WCS researcher, Daniela de Luca, who was conducting a carnivore survey in the park said she now hopes to be able to find out more about the animal and thus help ensure its survival.
    (National Park International Bulletin, August 2002, pg. 22)

    Lagos declaration on Land and Resources rights in Africa - July 16th 2002
    1. Recognising that:
    · Most people in Africa still live in rural areas and derive their livelihoods primarily from land and natural resources
    · Neo-liberal development policies and programmes promoted by northern donor countries, agencies, and multilateral institutions, which underpin the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD), do not give adequate recognition to the land and natural resource rights of the rural poor. They are premised on opening up African economies to external investment by multi-national corporations, and on securing the property rights of foreign capital
    · Across the continent the land and resource rights of the poor are threatened by inappropriate policies and institutions, unequal social, political and economic relations, and the actions of powerful vested interests
    2. We, the members of the Pan-African Programme on Land and Resource Rights (PAPLRR), a network of scholars, advocacy groups and practitioners from across the continent, call on all parties at the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) to acknowledge and confront the problematic situation in respect of land and resources in Africa, and to make this a starting point for sustainable economic development and rural transformation.
    3. We affirm our belief that rural development in Africa should be based on enhancement of the productive capacities of rural people and the regeneration of local economies. Economic efficiency must be subordinate to, and supportive of, social efficiency. Markets, including land markets, can be promoted if they enhance local productive relations and do not lead to inequitable concentrations of wealth. Securing the land and resource rights of the rural poor is a necessary, if not sufficient, condition for economic renewal.
    4. Policies, laws and programmes to secure these rights are an urgent necessity across the continent. This must include the recognition of customary norms in tenure relations and their integration into national policy and legal frameworks. Governments must also allocate sufficient resources for effective implementation of these policies and laws.
    5. Equity must be a fundamental goal of all such policies. Policies must promote gender, class, race, generational, and ethnic equity as a basis for people-centred sustainable development. In particular law, policy and practice must secure the rights of women, who are the main users of land in most parts of the continent. Historical injustices must be addressed and land redistribution programmes implemented where needed.
    6. Processes of rural transformation must be accompanied by the democratisation of institutions that govern land and resources, at all levels of state and society. This will entail both devolution of decision-making authority, and the allocation of adequate resources to decentralised institutions.
    7. In a globalising world in which the interconnectedness of nations is increasing, the accountability of all actors, including developed countries and development partners, is imperative in the quest for the realisation of meaningful land and resource rights. This must be accompanied by concerted and targeted efforts to build the capacity of African countries to enable them to address the challenges of globalisation, in favour of social equity for the poor. We also call for an end to the hypocrisy of those wealthy nations that require the developing world to liberalise markets but subsidise their own farmers and industries and protect them from competition from the South.
    8. We recognise that some international agreements (e.g. the Convention on Biological Diversity - CBD) can enhance the rights of local communities to land and resources while others (e.g. the Agreement on Trade-related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights - TRIPS) directly and indirectly encroach on these rights. There is an urgent need to implement and enforce treaties that promote local communities' rights, and mobilise a common African voice against those that endanger these rights.
    9. The people of Africa are beginning to organise themselves into social movements to resist the negative effects of inappropriate policies, and to develop alternatives. This is to be welcomed as pressure from below, which is essential for democratisation and the adoption of policies to secure the rights and livelihoods of the rural poor. We declare our support for these movements and commit ourselves to working closely with them. We call on progressive government officials, NGOs and researchers to provide them with meaningful material assistance.
    10. We urge researchers and practitioners to acknowledge that land and resource issues are multi-dimensional and cannot be reduced to a single disciplinary or sector-specific approach. Researchers and practitioners must build strong and equitable partnerships among NGOs, civil society and academic institutions.
    11. The central issue of land and resource rights has been grossly neglected in forums such as WSSD and initiatives such as NEPAD. However, sustainable development in Africa will never be achieved without the securing of these rights in law, and their realisation in practice through concerted efforts at all levels of society.
    This declaration was adopted at the Pan-African Programme on Land and Resource Rights (PAPLRR) Second workshop, held in Lagos, Nigeria from July 15-16, 2002. More than 30 participants participated at this meeting. They represented 17 African countries altogether
    For details, comments or queries please contact the PAPLRR Coordinator at the Programme for Land & Agrarian Studies, School of Government, University of the Western Cape, P. Bag X17, Bellville 7535, South Africa, E-mail: msaruchera@uwc.ac.za Fax: +27-21-959 3732.

    The Millennium Seed Bank Project is intended to enhance conservation of threatened and useful wild plants in Botswana through the design and implementation of an ex situ conservation programme in Botswana. "Ex-situ" means collecting seeds and plant material, and protecting them in special seed banks or other facilities, as opposed to protecting them "in situ" i.e. where they are found. The project, to start late this year, will be a joint effort involving the Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew, UK, and from Botswana, the National Plant Genetic Resources Centre, the National Herbarium and Botanical Garden, and Veld Products Research and Development.
    The project is financed through the Millennium Fund, UK, and will last initially for five years, with a further five years provisionally planned thereafter.
    The partners will target to collect seed from up to 400 threatened and useful species over five years. Seed will be stored long-term in duplicate collections in Botswana and the UK. Botswana will retain ownership of all seed collected.
    The project has long-term conservational objectives with regard to bio-diversity, but shorter-term benefits include data exchange, technology transfer, and training.
    The project will also enable experience to be gained by the National Herbarium and Veld Products Research and Development in the propagation of threatened and useful species.
    The total budget for the five year project is about P2,315,000.
    For more information please contact Mr David Inger, Managing Director Veld Products Research and Development, inger@botsnet.bw

    The panel addressed networks and specific networking initiatives related to natural re-source management (NRM). Based on selected case studies, the panel discussed the increased networking initiatives among various stakeholders on societal levels, from project, sector to global. The panel presenters discussed how the networks operate and the constraints and opportunities they have experienced. The presenters observed that networks have always existed as loose connections of like-minded professionals who communicate and share information and experiences on a regular basis. The development of networking programmes has largely resulted out of the need to formalise relations between individuals, institutions and programmes, and also to develop more effective vehicles for advocacy. The advent of globalisation has led to a search for more effective modes of communicating between people. The development of information and communication technologies (ICTs) has provided the necessary equipment to undertake this networking. The uneven distribution of ICTs has also meant that there is differential access to information disseminated through electronic networks. The presenters discussed an alternative networking initiative that uses theatre and arts as a means of networking and that also reaches different beneficiary groups. The presenters discussed the following four electronic and one theatre/arts networks: o CASS/PLAAS CBNRM programme being implemented in southern Africa; o IASCP West Africa network, o National Forum on CBNRM in Botswana, o the global CBNRM-Net and Community Outreach Programme in Southern Africa.
    (Commons Southern Africa, Vol.4 Part1 August 2002)

    For those who are interested in community-based tourism in Botswana, we are glad to inform you that you can now surf to the community-based tourism page of the CBNRM Support Programme website http://www.cbnrm.bw and open the map to undertake a virtual journey through Botswana. The map displayed at your screen will lead you through the most interesting web sites and pages of various communities involved in tourism in Botswana. Travel well!
    For more information please contact Nico Rozemeijer, CBNRM Support Programme, at information@cbnrm.bw

    A letter from the Ministry of Agriculture, M. K. C. Modisaotsile (for Chief Land Utilisation Officer), addressed to FONSAG informed that: "United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification Secretariat advises that each country party to the Convention should develop and submit projects to combat desertification, mitigate effects of drought and alleviate poverty, to UNCCD office as a depository for seeking funds from donor community by the later. You are therefore requested to share this information with the rest of the NGO community and also encourage them to develop and submit projects through our office for subsequent forwarding to the Secretariat." For more information please contact Diana Mompoloki (FONSAG) at fonsag@global.bw or Tel: 307506

    On the 4th December this year the path of a total eclipse will pass through the Northern parts of South Africa, an area called Venda. WildlifeDecisionSupport.com has formed a partnership with the local communities to provide temporary accommodation over this period. The area is rich in culture, myths, sacred forests and lakes and close to the renowned Kruger National Park. For more information go to http://thelandoflegend.com


    July 2002 NEWS

    Sixteen wildlife officers have been posted to the Boteti Sub-district to strengthen the Department of Wildlife and National Parks' problem animal control unit in the area. The Minister for Trade, Industry, wildlife and tourism told parliament that some of the activities that had been undertaken by the problem animal control unit in Boteti include driving or scaring elephants and other problem animals away from livestock and arable farming areas. The minister also said that in June the problem animal control unit, with the use of helicopter, drove elephants that were roaming the Eyoake and Toromoja cattle posts back to the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park. The exercise was carried out in response to reports from farmers and since then no reports of elephants have been received from these areas. Furthermore, the envisaged construction of an electric perimeter boundary fence around Makgadikgadi Pans National Park, which is to commence during this financial year, will further curtail the spillage of elephants and other wild animals into the Boteti livestock and arable farming areas.
    (Botswana Daily News, July 26th, 2002, pg.3)

    The Kweneng District Council and Permaculture Trust of Botswana (Local NGO) have entered into a five -year contract costing 2.4 million Pula to provide extension support and training to residents of Kaudwane in self-help projects. Kgosi Kgari III Sechele of Bakwena said when officially opening integrated projects at the settlement that the success of the project depends on hard work and called on residents to take it seriously and give their unqualified support. The objective of the project is to provide residents in the settlement with skills that will enable them to sustain themselves economically. The contract provides for the construction of 60 housing units, establishment of 30 backyard gardens, 30 backyard poultry projects, craft making activities and creation of jobs through Community Based Natural Resource Management as well as RADP project appraisals. For instance, beneficiaries will be supplied with cement and building materials, while they will have to mould their bricks and build their houses and toilet units. They will also be supplied with garden materials and taught how to grow vegetables using water saving techniques. (Botswana Daily News, July 26th, 2002, pg.4)

    Botswana has submitted a proposal for trade in live elephants to acceptable buyers to the secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES). Among others, Botswana proposal calls for trade in hunting trophies for non-commercial purposes and trade in live animals for commercial purposes to appropriate and acceptable destinations (and as determined by the national legislation of the country of import). Director of Wildlife and National Parks, Joseph Mathlare, said in a statement that the proposal also seeks permission for trade in registered stocks of raw ivory (whole tusks and pieces) of Botswana origin owned by the government for commercial purposes only to CITES approved trading partners who will not re-export the ivory. The proposal will be considered by the 12th Conference of Parties scheduled from Nov.3rd-15th 2002 in Santiago del Chile, Chile.
    (Botswana Daily News, July 22nd, 2002, pg.2)

    Ratholo councillor, Oageng Modikwa has expressed hope that CITES will allow Botswana to cull its elephant herd. Speaking in the on-going session of the Central District Council, he expressed the concern that the animals were destroying the environment, property and posed a threat to people's lives. Botswana's elephant population is estimated to have increased to over 110 000 following the moratorium on their hunting by CITES.
    (Botswana Daily News, July 10th, 2002, pg.4)

    Government has been requested to give Batswana preferential treatment in the game ranching industry. Boteti MP Slumber Tsogwane said Batswana lack in skills to venture into the tourism industry, and they should be assisted to benefit from their wildlife resources. Commenting on the draft game ranching policy when Parliament resumed the debate, Tsogwane said foreigners who want to invest in the country's tourism industry should form joint ventures with Batswana. The Boteti MP said in order to create employment opportunities in rural areas tourism industries must set-up in wildlife areas. Tsogwane also complained about the exportation of live animals, saying the practice will ultimately kill the local tourism industry, as recipient countries would breed their own stock. The Okavango MP Joseph Kavindama said if Batswana were not assisted to acquire skills in the tourism industry, foreigners would be the sole beneficiaries of the policy.
    (Botswana Daily News, July 17th, 2002, pg.3)

    Despite reservations by a number of MPs, Parliament adopted the Game Ranching Policy. While members of the ruling party BDP saw the policy as a step in empowering Batswana, opposition MPs said that like many others before, it will only benefit a few well off people. The BNF MP for Kanye said this was not the first time that ranching was discussed. He stated that in the past Tribal Grazing Land Policy was discussed and agreed. "Some ranches were demarcated in Gangwaketse but some just disappeared into thin air. Some of them are owned by foreigners," he said. He added that there is no way Batswana will succeed in game ranching since they failed in cattle farming, which is something they are accustomed to. The Minister of Health, Joy Phumaphi said the policy was going to increase opportunities for Batswana. She said the policy intends to make better use of the land.
    (Mmegi, July 19th-25th, 2002, pg. 4 news)

    African Civil Society organisations, after meeting at Port Shepstone, rejected the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) initiative.
    During a press conference in Durban, the representatives of church, trade union, non-governmental organisations and other civil society movements said NEPAD ignored efforts by Africans to resolve the crisis plaguing the continent. "We do not accept the NEPAD plan as a process and its content. We are committed to joint efforts for Africa's development and emancipation and we call upon all African people, organisations and movements to continue their existing efforts to produce sustainable, just and viable alternatives that will benefit all the people of Africa", the groups said in a declaration after the four-days meeting in Port Shepstone. They said that NEPAD was mainly concerned with "raising external resources, appealing to and relying on external governments and institutions".
    (Mmegi, July 12th-18th, 2002, pg. 2 news)

    Teaching people new ways of caring for natural resources is one of the pre-requisites to achieving sustainable development in the 21st century, Felix Monggae, the chairperson of the Botswana Civil Society Committee, said in Gaborone. Addressing a news conference, Monggae said the conservation and management of natural resources should be put at the forefront of all development initiatives to avoid the depletion of the earth. He also said that deforestation, pollution, hazardous wastes, solid wastes and sewage are some of the factors that contribute to poverty. Monggae's news conference was partly called to present the nation, the position of the country's civil societies to present at the World Summit on Sustainable Development. Monggae announced that Botswana civil society has set-up a committee that will seek and come up with measures of alleviating poverty without harming natural resources.
    (Botswana Daily News, July 18th, 2002, pg.3)

    Consultations between Botswana, South Africa and Zimbabwe over the establishment of a transfrontier conservation in the Shashe/Limpopo (Shalimpo) rivers confluence and the Tuli block area are still at preliminary stage. The Transfrontier Park, the second for Botswana will include some areas in Zimbabwe and the Vhembe/Dongola National Park in South Africa. The Minister for Trade, Industry, wildlife and tourism, Pelonomi Venison said her ministry has entered into preliminary consultation with the two neighbouring countries on the possibility of establishing a transfrontier conservation area centred on the confluence of the Shashe and Limpopo rivers and straddling the international boundaries of the three countries. Venson said the envisaged transfrontier conservation area will be a unique venture in that it involves a partnership between governments of three countries, the private sector and local communities. Other benefits will include employment creation for rural communities, both in terms of direct employment and in facilities for marketing traditional crafts, extension of the range for animals in particular elephants that are at present mostly found in Botswana. Through the project there will be improved management of shared resources through the development of joint management and tourism plans, undertaking joint marketing strategies and joint research and monitoring activities and thereby pooling the financial resources together and sharing experiences.
    (The Botswana Guardian, July 19th, 2002, pg.19)

    Scientists and environmental groups often paint grim pictures of a world with a substantially altered climate. But the fact is, even if we start reducing our emissions today, we can't stop global warming in its tracks because the warming has already begun. It will take centuries before some effects, such as sea level rise, stop entirely. This leads to a common complaint some critics raise against the Kyoto Protocol, the only international framework set up to reduce the emissions that cause climate change. Alone, it will do little to curb the problem, so what's the point?

    On July 11th 2002, the third national CBNRM Forum has been held at the Kagisong Centre, Mogodisthane. Representatives of all CBNRM Stakeholders of Botswana, including Government, national community-based organisations, non-governmental organisations and the private sector attended the meeting. The Forum discussed relevant CBNRM issues and followed-up on recommendations of previous Conferences, Forums, Steering Committee meetings and other CBNRM related events. One of the main achievement was the approval by the Forum on the Final advice from the National CBNRM Forum to DWNP on the reviewed joint venture guidelines ( to be found on the CBNRM web page). For more details on the outcomes of the Forum contact Cathrine Wirbelauer at the Secretariat cathrine@iucnbot.bw or Nico Rozemeijer, CBNRM Support Programme at information@cbnrm.bw or visit the CBNRM web page http://www.cbnrm.bw/ .

    As from 1st August 2002 Mr Machana Shamukuni will be CEO of CWT. CWT will also have a new EE Officer, Mosweu Mukuwa. As such, all CWT officers will be local and originally from Chobe District, which will greatly enhance CWT's understanding of and capacity to deliver CBNRM to the local communities.
    Furthermore, CWT are now recognised by SADC EE Attachment Programme as a provider of courses on CBNRM and Transboundary NRM. The first course will be held in September this year. Please contact Machana Shamukuni on cwt@botsnet.bw for further details. There are a few places left for the September course.
    Finally and as recommended at the last CBNRM National Forum, CWT now has an HIV/AIDS policy and, where appropriate, coordinates the CBNRM work with the fight against HIV/AIDS.

    The IUCN Botswana office is starting a new project in the area of TBNRM, which will feed into IUCNROSA regional activities on TBNRM and which will be funded by USAID and Ford Foundation. The project, "Review and Broad consultation process for TBNRM in Botswana" will have duration of 10 months starting from July 1st 2002 and will be implemented in collaboration and partnership with CWT (Chobe Wildlife Trust), relevant Government Departments and other TBNRM Stakeholders. Its main goal is to facilitate an improved understanding and implementation of TBNRM in Botswana in order for stakeholders to derive increased benefits. The project is looking at bringing all TBNRM stakeholders together and, through a comprehensive review of TBNRM in Botswana, start a broader consultation process. This exercise will not only unite the stakeholders towards common goals and joint efforts, it will also aim to establish a foundation for a "Forum" where common issues related to TBNRM in the Country will be discussed. The initial consultation process will help in identifying the relevant areas of TBNRM in Botswana and to distinguish those objectives that can be achieved more effectively by working collaboratively across borders from those where internal actions (in Botswana) alone should suffice. Cooperating across borders increases the complexity of stakeholders. Diversity of interests can be very high, covering ecological, socio-cultural, economic, institutional and political issues. Ensuring adequate stakeholder participation and seeking win-win situations take time but are essential for success. Consultations shall, besides the above also help in identifying the best way forward and collaboration within Botswana. The process should be inclusive of, and transparent to, all stakeholders. Its main objectives are: to facilitate a common agreement on objectives/outcomes for TBNRM in Botswana and to develop and implement communication, networking and information sharing tools on TBNRM in Botswana. For more information on the project please contact Eva Sophia Figueroa-Salas at iucn@iucnbot.bw or Cathrine Wirbelauer at cathrine@iucnbot.bw.

    Pretoria-based publishing house WildNet Africa has announced the launch of its latest virtual community website called http://MyEarthSummit.org. Operating under the slogan "Real People, Real Issues", the purpose of "myEarthSummit.org" is to enable individuals from across the world to have their say on issues relating to the upcoming Summit. One of the opportunities is for people to say whether or not they feel that the heads of state of their respective countries should indeed bother to attend the Summit on their behalf. Or whether other engagements should take priority. Other opportunities to express an opinion include: How the citizens of individual countries feel their governments have fared in their commitments under Agenda 21; How we as the Global Village have fared on our commitments made in the Rio Declaration; How the delegates are likely to fare on the short agenda identified by Secretary General Kofi Annan: Water. Energy. Health. Agriculture. Biodiversity, and whether so-called "Big Issues" are indeed as important as they are made out to be.
    "myEarthSummit.org" also includes an online presence for the 9th Cathay Pacific Wilderness Experience which is due to take place at Entabeni Game Reserve in South Africa at the end of July. UNESCO and ASPnet are affiliates of this well-established environmental education initiative.(http://myEarthSummit.org/cathay2002)
    For more information visit the web page at http://myEarthSummit.org


    June 2002 NEWS

    Local environmental watchdogs are having the same bad dream. In it, there is blood on the ground: underground water is polluted, fishes are dying and a host of Batswana are plagued by water borne diseases. This may not be pure fantasy, something similar may actually happen if Botswana authorities do not act swiftly to regulate the booming "bush mechanics" industry. " we have a serious problem in this country; a problem of uncoordinated mushrooming of business" said Oarabile Serumola, Principal Water Engineer in the department of water affairs. The main worry is the mushrooming of bush mechanics who spill toxic used oil everywhere. "Ideally, oil should not be allowed to sink into the ground. One drop of oil pollutes underground water to the size of a football pitch," she says. Although it is mostly underground water, which is susceptible to pollution, even surface water can be contaminated. Ecology aside, fish eater run the risk of eating fish which has been contaminated by toxic used oil which has been left to find its way into the surface water. It is already evident that the barba fishing is feeling the effects of water pollution, says Somarelang Tikologo's environmental officer. Gaborone fishermen are running a roaring trade selling barba fish.
    (The Botswana Guardian, June 28th, 2002, pg.10)

    Giving a keynote address for the commemoration of the World Day to combat desertification recently, Masunga pointed out that the choice of the venue was made last December. This was in recognition of the good initiatives by the Matsiloje people in the fight against desertification and drought as evidenced by their agro-forestry project. The theme for this year's commemoration was "Reducing land degradation through poverty alleviation and sustainable use of land". Masunga said the theme was relevant as it brought out in the minds of the people a natural drive for conservation, which is consistent with the goals and objectives of a number of Government policies. He mentioned the National Conservation Strategy, national Development Plan 8, Vision 2016, Rural Development Policy and the National Settlement Policy. These policies emphasise sustainable economic diversification, sustainable economic growth and development, the conservation of natural resources, development and improvement on the quality of life for people in Botswana. He also remarked that lack of income for investments and protection of natural resources by the poor is often characterised by lack of replenishment, which leads to increased resource degradation.
    (Mmegi, 28 June-4 July 2002, pg. 14)

    A late but very special Christmas present-two presents in fact, as two rhino calves were born in the Khama Rhino Sanctuary Trust bringing the total number of white rhinos to 20. Rhinos are breeding extremely well at KRST, with four calves born since January last year and a fifth expected. The capacity of the Sanctuary has been calculated at 30 rhinos, so within a few years the KRSY will be able to start selling rhinos to other nature reserves, generating the much needed revenue for the Sanctuary and helping re-introduce the rhinos back into their original range throughout Botswana.
    (Mmegi, 28 June-4 July 2002, pg. 20)

    Since they were introduced in Botswana about end of First World War, camels were solely utilised by the police force for riding and as pack animals on patrols in the west and southwest. The animals were kept at Tsabong. In early 1999, the Police decided to auction all the camels citing high maintenance costs. The ministry of Trade, Industry, Wildlife and Tourism and other stakeholders in the tourism sector negotiated with the Police to halt the auction, arrangements were being made to give animals to Rural Area dwellers in the Kgalagadi. A consultancy team of camel resource people from Kenya carried out assessments of the herd. There were 39 trainees drawn predominantly from the rural areas and community based organisations within the Kgalagadi, trained during 7 weeks. The total camels examinated were 130, they were placed under the custody of MTIWaT, through DWNP, with the aim of ensuring that they benefit rural communities whilst supporting the development of new tourism products and activities in the west and southwest. The Department subsequently transferred the camels to rural communities in order for them to benefit from the use of these multi-purpose animals. It is considered that by developing community managed camel safaris much more marginal tourism areas southwest of Botswana would be of interest to regional and international tourists. This intervention will provide income and employment opportunities for communities living in the area. Now that the camels have been distributed, the recipient communities are developing some new tourism concepts such as trekking, game viewing, hunting and camping with camels. Of course they can also be used for carrying water (up to 200L), pulling loads and ploughing. However the development of this new tourism product in Botswana should enhance the local skills of gathering veldproducts, hunting, bush craft, and other aspects of culture being combined into one interesting package for visitors form overseas as well as local people.
    (Mmegi, 28 June-4 July 2002, Arts/culture pg. 3)

    The Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources has been urged to build a fisheries centre in the Caprivi Region to promote fish farming. In the National Council Swapo MP, Peter Mwala, said subsistence fishing was crucial to life of communities in Caprivi. To ensure sustainable utilisation of fresh water fish it is proposed that the Ministry of Fisheries should establish a fisheries centre in Katima Mulilo. Such a centre would also provide fish farmers with stock and carry out extension support programmes in order to encourage local communities and individuals to set up their own fish farms.
    (Mmegi, 07-13 June, 2002, pg. B6; The Namibian)

    Last week Mickael Kra was still putting last touches to his own haute couture jewellery show in Milan, two days later and 10.000Km south, he was conducting a workshop with ostrich egg shells and porcupine pieces made by San women from the Kalahari desert in Botswana - two opposite worlds that need to be linked: ancient heritage of the San and modern lifestyle of Europe. Twenty-three San women from remote areas in the Kgalagadi and Ghanzi District and from Namibia, have been invited to a workshop by the NGO Kuru, Ghanzi and Zhutswa Craft under the umbrella of the D'Kar Kuru Trust. For the marginalized San in Botswana and Namibia the main source of income is their age-old famous artisan skills producing jewellery and craft from leather and ostrich shells. The constraints however, for many years, have been the market imperatives of the world of the 21st century. To bridge this cultural gap between African and Europe and to improve traditional product without loosing its authentic touch, Kra with his multicultural background has proved to be just the right person. A follow-up workshop should secure medium and long-term sustainability of the culture-conform product up grading and the generation of a basic income for the San women in Southern Africa.
    (Mmegi, 14-20 June 2002, Arts/culture pg. 2)

    President Festus Mogae has declared the Country drought stricken following unfavourable weather spell with debilitating effects on farming activities, rangeland, and overall food security at household level. In a statement Mogae said the on-going drought relief measures should be continued with effective from this Monday to June 30, next year. They will take the form of labour based public work programmes whose wage rates should be increased from P8 per day to P10 per day for casual labourers and from P10 to P16 per day for supervisors. The bulk of the money will be for labour based work programmes, and about 9% will go towards the purchase of additional strategic grain reserve stocks, while 7% will be shared between the feeding programme, the free seed issue and free botulism vaccination.
    (Daily news, June 27th, 2002, pg.1)

    The Department of Water Affairs plans to spend about P6 million to remove papyrus reeds and other aquatic weeds choking the flow of water in the Okavango Delta. Water Affairs principal hydrological engineer Baraedi Jay said at a Kgotla meeting in Maun that his department was currently consulting stakeholders on the planed project. Jay said there was need to remove the aquatic weeds because if left to grow unchecked, some waterways and channels would be completely closed, thus limiting access to various areas and inhibiting the flow of water. The treatment he said, was not to dredge the river or create any new channels. He said that currently Water Affairs could not reach some monitoring stations to gauge the quantity and quality of water flowing into the area from the Angolan highlands, where the Okavango River originates. Jay was also concerned that human activity in the delta was contributing to the fast growth of the weeds. He said that if stakeholders gave it the go-ahead, an American company, Aquarius Systems, would be engaged and most of the funds spent on buying equipment and the training of machine operatives.
    (Daily news, June 19th, 2002, pg.3)

    Within the IUCN project "Assessment of present status of policy formulation and implementation processes in southern Africa" with the objective to develop participatory approaches to policy formulation that adequately addresses the local realities in southern Africa, a Regional Policy Workshop is being organised from 9 to 10 July in Johannesburg. The workshops main objectives will be: To share experiences, challenges and lessons from the country policy assessments among governments, NGOs and private sector; To develop recommendations on how to influence national and regional policy formulation processes so that they are more effective and inclusive. The target group (circa 40 participants) will be: Study authors, IUCN Country Offices, SADC (ELMS, Water, Forestry, Acting Director -SADC FANR), Government, NGOs, Community leaders, Private Sector, Policy Centres (SAPES, Namibian Economic Policy Research Unit) Commission Members, and USAID. The workshop will have linkages with other initiatives as: TBNRM, EIA, ZIMOZA, Water Programme, etc. It is proposed that these linkages be captured in the keynote address and in the discussions.
    This initiative falls under the Networking and Capacity Building (NETCAB) Project and is coordinated by the Regional Policy Programme (RPP). In collaboration with IUCN ROSA's Country Offices six case studies were commissioned to assess the policy formulation and implementation process in Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The case studies were based on the concern that policy formulation and implementation processes do not adequately address the concerns of the various stakeholders. The case studies focused on the following policies: Botswana: National Conservation Strategy; Mozambique: NRM policies; Malawi: Forestry Policy Act 1997; South Africa: National Environmental Management Act; Zambia: Wetland Strategy and Action Programme; Zimbabwe: Environmental Management Bill.
    National workshops were held with key stakeholders to discuss the case study findings and to formulate recommendations on how policy formulation processes could be made more effective. Up-dates on the results of the workshop will be posted in the July or August edition of this Newsletter.


    May 2002 NEWS

    First Lady, Mrs Barbara Mongae, launched the first NGO Strategy on the environment 2002-2007 on Thursday May 2nd. The strategy contains plans for Forestry and Veld Products, the Okavango Delta, Urban Environment and Wildlife. The NGO strategy on the Environment seeks to identify goals, areas and activities for joint action and implementation during the period 2002-2007. The first lady said: " It is appropriate for the environmental sector to have a clear strategy and action plans that will enable us to achieve over all successful conservation and prosperity", and stressed that to accomplish the strategies, NGOs must have suitable financing. In this regard she also informed that IUCN is facilitating the feasibility of setting up an Environmental Trust Fund in Botswana, to assist NGOs to achieve their long-term vision. Mrs Comfort Tetteh, UNDP deputy Resident representative, commended the environmental NGOs for having espoused the concept of sustainable development, which is the bedrock of all UNDP programmes and reiterated UNDP commitment for continue collaboration with NGOs and other civil society groups.
    (The Botswana Gazette, May 8th, 2002, pg.4)

    The new and young programme now has a website!. Although still under "construction" the first pages can viewedon the following URL address; www.cbnrm.uwc.ac.za/paplrr. You will notice there is not much information for now, but if you keep an eye on the space you will notice the new materials lined up for the coming months.

    Pretoria-based publishing house WildNet Africa has announced the formation of the three-way Land of Legend Partnership between itself, the community of the Mutale Valley in Venda (Limpopo Province) and Isaac Rambauli, local tour operator based in Thohoyandou. The purpose of The Land of Legend Partnership is to ensure that benefits flowing from the 4th of December total solar eclipse accrue to the local community. These benefits include the opportunity to derive income from the tourist influx expected at the time of the eclipse. Of greater importance is to ensure that the area derives longer-term benefits from the advent of the eclipse phenomenon.
    "The eclipse represents an opportunity as well as a threat," says founder of WildNet Africa, Dr Andrew McKenzie. "Unless we are pro-active in ensuring that communities derive some benefit from this event, they will simply see it as yet another invasion of their privacy and their land." "With its established focus on tourism, WildNet Africa is ideally positioned to ensure that the opportunities represented by the eclipse are funnelled down to community. The partnership with Rambauli ensures that local operator expertise is effectively deployed at the same time," he added.
    The Land of Legend Partnership has secured camping sites, viewing sites, former army barracks and a community craft centre within the Mutale Valley. The craft centre will serve as an entertainment venue as well as an outlet for the arts and crafts of the area. Places to explore before and after the eclipse includes potholes, caves, sacred forests, a botanical reserve and a sacred lake. Besides individual accommodation opportunities in the form of the barracks and tented accommodation for individuals and families, the Partnership is actively promoting the allocation of areas of community land for use by overland operators and corporate camps. "We are finding that a lot of companies see this as an opportunity for a very special year-end function" added McKenzie. WildNet Africa itself will be hosting people from the tourism and conservation fraternities in a designated area set aside for this purpose, ensuring that those in the industry are not left out when it comes to experiencing this very special event. The Land of Legend opportunities will be advertised via a dedicated website at TheLandOfLegend.com and on the official eclipse website EclipseLine.co.za which is run by WildNet Africa in association with Limpopo Province Tourism and Parks Board. For more information call Lana Lemmer at 021 991 3083 or on 082 785 3500, South Africa or refer to http://EclipseLine.co.za for more information on the 2002 eclipse.
    (Wildnet Africa, 13th May 2002)

    The Botswana Crane Working Group was established recently as an active branch of BirdLife Botswana. It is Maun-based, with easy access to major crane habitats in the Okavango and Makgadikgadi regions, and is driven by a group of citizens and long-time residents of the area. Thanks to the commitment and generosity of one of its members, the Group already has a fully furnished office complete with a computer on which a comprehensive database is being established. Two members of the Botswana Crane Working Group recently attended a workshop of the South African Crane Working Group in order to tap into the expertise that exists within the Southern African region, and to co-ordinate plans with other crane workers.
    The Botswana Crane Working Group is using an updated version of the Action Plan developed at the 1993 Maun Workshop as the basis for its activities. An immediate priority is organising an aerial survey of wattled cranes is scheduled to take place later this year, this time coinciding with similar surveys in Mocambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe - countries that share these birds with Botswana. This will provide vital information on numbers and distribution - important baseline parameters when dealing with endangered species.
    However, the Group is also concerned with identifying and addressing existing and potential threats to cranes within the country. A project has been established to monitor breeding success of wattled cranes during the re-instated aerial spraying programme for the eradication of tsetse fly - which could directly and indirectly impact on cranes and other waterbirds. In this context, cranes are once again likely to be flagships for wetlands and the diversity of species they support.
    The challenges facing the Group are as enormous as those facing the birds themselves. However, Group members subscribe to the view that cranes have a vital role to play in bringing people together to solve broader issues that relate not only to the survival of cranes but, ultimately, to the survival of our own life-support system. For more information contact Pete Hancock at pete@info.bw.

    The Global Peatland Initiative (GPI) started in spring 2001 with seed funding from the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and is planned for a period of six years. IN the autumn of 2001 the IMPESA-project was initiated as the first and up to now, sole GPI project on the African Continent. IN the present phase the project covers Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Swaziland and Zimbabwe. It is intended to extend the collaboration with other African countries in the next project phases. The project phases are: Framework development, resource evaluation and training of the Southern African Peatland Group (SafPG) until July 2002; Completion of the peatland inventory, following in 2002/2003. The main goals of the project are: A peatland inventory followed by the identification of key peatland areas in southern Africa and the development and promotion of a network of local, national and international initiatives. A peatland is a landscape area with a layer of peat at the surface. Peat is partly decomposed dead plant material that has accumulated in situ as a result of waterlogging. Mire is a peatland, which supports vegetation that is normally peat forming. For more information on the project please contact Dr. Jan Sliva sliva@wzw.tum.de.

    Botswana is one of the first countries in Africa to develop an ecotourism strategy, prepared by the Department of Tourism. The final draft of the Botswana National Ecotourism Strategy will be officially launched on September 27th, 2002 to coincide with the commemoration of the World Tourism Day according to principal tourism officer, Mr Wazga Tema. The final draft stipulates as its objectives the importance to ensure that tourism development does not exceed the carrying capacity of host areas, to monitor and develop greater understanding of the impacts of tourism on heritage sites and host communities to alleviate potential negative impacts. Other objectives include ensuring that the activities of tourists, tour operators and other stakeholders do not compromise the sustainability of heritage areas and to encourage tourism activities focussing on Botswana's natural areas to contribute directly to their conservation.
    (The Botswana Guardian, pg.27, Friday May 17th, 2002)

    Botswana and other regional countries, which are lobbying for trade in elephants and elephant products face tough battle, following the renewal of the anti trade lobby group war chest. Dr. Richard Leakey, who as director of the Kenya Wildlife Service introduced stringent anti-poaching measures in the late 1980s, says a new market for ivory has arisen and the species is at risk across the world. Asian elephants have suffered horrendous losses in the last decade, he says, and fears that African elephants will be targeted next. Botswana and countries in the pro trade group are expected to come up against this argument at the next CITES meeting, where the two sides will pit strengths again.
    (The Botswana Guardian, pg.31, Friday May 17th, 2002)

    The future of 30% percent of about 20.000 people who live in the buffer areas are recently declared Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park in Massingir, in Mozambique's southern province of Gaza, was the centre of discussion at a consultative meeting on management plans for the park's natural resources, recently held in the capital Maputo. The Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park is one of the world's largest conservancies, straddling parts of Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe. The park is currently inhabited by about 20,000 people, 6,000 of whom may have to be moved from the buffer areas regarded as fundamental for the development of tourism and the conservation of biodiversity. The park is to be fenced to prevent a conflict of interests between these families' agricultural activities and the principles of wildlife conservation. IN general terms, all communities consulted expressed concern with the improvement of their living conditions, without, however, considering the creation of the park as a major opportunity to improve their standards of living. Such a plan seeks, among other objectives, to define precisely what activities will be undertaken by communities living within and in the immediate vicinity of the park, in order to ensure the maintenance of the biodiversity.
    (Mmegi, 17-23 May 2002, pg. 17)

    The Kruger National Park, a game park in South Africa about the size of Wales, is symbolically for sale to buyers across the world in an effort to promote conservation, a conservationist said. Commemorative bricks-representing an acre (0.4Ha) of land in the poark and costing from 49 up to 500 US$- will be for sale at 340 outlets in South Africa. They are already for sale on the Internet and the project for the park in northeastern South Africa has raised 500,000 Rand since it was launched four months ago. "My acre for Africa is an attempt to raise 200 million dollars over three years for conservation and education in southern Africa" said Pyne-James, chief executive officer of the project. "My acre for Africa has the potential to be one of the world's greatest initiatives for achieving sustainable financing for the region's unique biodiversity".
    (Mmegi, 17-23 May 2002, pg. B13)


    Please find copy of the Report by the Consultants regarding the National Ecotourism Strategy: National Ecotourism Strategy - Final Report.pdf


    April 2002 NEWS

    First Lady, Mrs Barbara Mongae, launched the first NGO Strategy on the environment 2002-2007 on Thursday May 2nd. The strategy contains plans for Forestry and Veld Products, the Okavango Delta, Urban Environment and Wildlife. The NGO strategy on the Environment seeks to identify goals, areas and activities for joint action and implementation during the period 2002-2007. The first lady said: " It is appropriate for the environmental sector to have a clear strategy and action plans that will enable us to achieve over all successful conservation and prosperity", and stressed that to accomplish the strategies, NGOs must have suitable financing. In this regard she also informed that IUCN is facilitating the feasibility of setting up an Environmental Trust Fund in Botswana, to assist NGOs to achieve their long-term vision. Mrs Comfort Tetteh, UNDP deputy Resident representative, commended the environmental NGOs for having espoused the concept of sustainable development, which is the bedrock of all UNDP programmes and reiterated UNDP commitment for continue collaboration with NGOs and other civil society groups.
    (The Botswana Gazette, May 8th, 2002, pg.4)

    Community-Based Tourism shows that Africa is not only about scenery and animals, but people and culture, says Margaret Taylor of the Regional Tourism Authority of Southern Africa (RETOSA). RETOSA is made up of 14 national tourism authorities in the SADC. Tourism revenue dropped an average 10 percent across the region in the past year, dimming some governments' hopes of improving their gross domestic product by attracting foreign currency spender. A coast-to-coast regional tourism initiative was launched last week, however, aimed at developing tourism corridor from Walvis Bay, at Namibia's Atlantic Shore, to Maputo, Mozambique, on the Indian Ocean. Centred along the Trans-Kalahari Highway, the initiative hopes to duplicate for tourists the experience of travelling the Explorer Highway in Australia or Route 66 in the United States. "People, Culture and Crafts" is the central theme the initiative's managers plan to exploit. In this sense, an example of community-Based Tourism is the Mlawula Nature Reserve, created by Swazi villagers who open their homes to visitors for a unique opportunity to experience traditional life. Another example is the Warmbad Museum in Namibia, the third community museum in the country launched by NACOBTA. The Museum is managed by the Bondelswarts people, a sub-group of the Nama tribe of Namibia.
    (The Botswana Gazette, April 24th, 2002, pg. B5)

    Government has revised the rural development policy to diversify the economy of rural areas from small-scale agriculture. Finance and development minister Gaolathe says the revised national policy for rural development will pursue objectives of poverty reduction and promotion of sustainable livelihoods. These objectives will be achieved by stimulating rural employment and income generation through identification and exploitation of profitable alternatives additional to livestock and arable agriculture, such as rural industries, services and crafts, attraction of skilled youth and promotion of private sector initiatives. Other initiatives would include increasing agricultural productivity, improving the rural development extension services and reducing, where socially acceptable, the livelihood dependency of people of government, whilst maintaining appropriate social protection. There will be a need of promoting participatory rural development process, through the involvement of local communities, non-governmental organisations, community based organisations and the private sector. There will be a need for development of comprehensive and integrated land plans and water management strategies, which are gender and environmentally friendly, targeting suitable potential growth areas.
    (The Botswana Guardian, April 5th, 2002, pg. 17)

    More than 50 rhinoceroses have reportedly been snared or killed by cartels working in cahoots with newly resettled villagers on farms adjacent to wildlife conservancies, a state daily reported. The animals killed included both white and black rhinos. Nearly 100 million Zimbabwean dollars worth of wildlife have been lost to poaching, illegal movement of wildlife, over hunting and commercial poaching in ranches and other game areas recently. The Herald quoted Environment and Tourism minister as saying that there has been unprecedented level of poaching on some farms over the past months by people taking advantage of the country's land reforms.
    (Mmegi, April 19th-25th, 2002, pg. B30)

    The water act should be amended and strengthened to impose stiff penalties on people who waste water, Mmadinare's Member of Parliament, Kedikilwe, said. Kedikilwe called for the intensification of the water conservation campaigns, starting at primary school. He said Batswana should be encouraged to build water tanks alongside their houses to harvest rainwater. The desalinisation programme should also be intensified. Small dams should be built to diversify the provision of water. He underscored the tradition of sharing national resource despite when a specific part of the country is endowed with such a resource.
    (Botswana Daily News, April 23rd, 2002, pg. 2)

    Parliament has resolved to request government to stay the implementation of the statutory instrument No. 69 of 2000 issued by the Minister of Trade, Industry, Wildlife and Tourism pending the outcome of the agreed consultation process on compensation vis-à-vis predators. Kedikilwe said the main issue is the extent of the protection of problem animals given that they make Batswana poor by killing their livestock. Modubule said consultation with the public would ensure that a reasonable consensus could be reached. He added that few lions could be kept in parks for tourists. However, presidential affairs and public administration minister Daniel Kwelagobe opposed the motion, saying it was calling for increased killing of lions when their number are dwindling for various other reasons. Kwelagobe said lions and cheetahs will be endangered if Parliament adopted the motion. Kgoroba said, young predators, especially lions, die of starvation because their mothers, who do hunting, most of the time would have been killed by farmers and their prides. He also said that supporting the motion would not be in the best interest of conservation of natural resources and tourism.
    (Botswana Daily News, April 23rd, 2002, pg. 3)

    Leopard is one of the animals classified as dangerous in the ninth schedule of the Wildlife and National Park act, for which compensation for damage to property is payable. Trade, Industry, Wildlife and Tourism minister Venson said in Parliament that she has a difficulty of where to draw the line regarding the cheetah and all other species that causes damage to property. Venson said there have been numerous requests for inclusion of other wildlife species; the fundamental question is whether the inclusion of additional species is sustainable and affordable in the long-term. The whole issue of compensation would therefore need further study and consultation.
    (Botswana Daily News, April 3rd, 2002, pg. 2)

    Department of Tourism as part of its tourism awareness decided to use drama to reach Botswana communities. The department has therefore warded Phutologo Drama Group from Gaborone a tender of tourism awareness promotion to market tourism under the theme "education through entertainment". "After every performance there is always tie for questions and comments and this will help Batswana to always welcome tourists in Botswana" said Letsididi, tourism information officer at Pandamantenga kgotla. She noted that the department of Tourism wants Batswana to be part of tourism staff by assisting them to conserve natural resources.
    (Botswana Daily News, April 4th, 2002, pg. 5)

    A planned release of a mixed group of African Wild dog (painted wolf), Lycaon Pictus, will mark the first relocation of wild dogs to a South African National Park. Marakele National Park in the Waterberg Mountains, western Limpopo Province, was identified by the Wild Dog Action Group as an important area for the conservation of this endangered species. Five males originally caught wild elsewhere in the Limpopo Province and three females donated by the North West Parks and Tourism Board and the De Wildt Cheetah and Wildlife Centre were moved to a newly built predator boma at Marekele to form a new pack which will be released later this year.
    (NBIP, National Park International Bulletin, Issue n.4, April 2002, pg.23)

    Dear Readers, as you may know the registration process for the conference is about to begin and several activities related to the WSSD are already running.
    For specific information's please contact maureen@worldsummit.org.za or tel: 27-11-4034 119

    Furthermore and for those interested IUCN has presented a specific paper at the "Preparatory Africa Meeting for World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) held in Dakar, Senegal, from 23-25 April, 2002. The full text of "GREENING THE NEW PARTNERSHIP FOR AFRICA'S DEVELOPMENT - NEPAD What Role for IUCN-The World Conservation Union?", can be found on http://iucn.org/wssd/docs/africa/dakar_nepad.pdf.


    March 2002 NEWS

    North West District Councillors have criticised the Department of Wildlife and National Parks for drawing up national parks management plans that favour foreigners. Councillors made their comments after the presentation on the draft Management Plan for the Chobe National Park River front by Chobe Park Manager. Speaking in a full Council meeting the councillors charged that some foreigners, mainly whites have been given exclusive rights to land usage in the Chobe District. The problem is created by plans that are biased in favour of foreigners at the expense of Batswana operators who are just establishing themselves in the lucrative tourism industry. Also community based organisations were said to not serving their purpose as they have been reduced to mere land lords who collect their rent and having no say in how their lands is being utilised.
    (Daily News, 11 March 2002, pg.5)

    Phuthologo Theatre is taking tourism to the community. Department of Tourism has commissioned Phutologo theatre group on a countrywide tour in a bid to educate Batswana about the importance of wildlife and tourism to everyday lives. It's one production that should be recommended to be taken beyond the borders. The title is echoing the efforts of the initiative to educate and economically involve local communities in investment opportunities within the tourism sector.
    (Bokamoso, March 2002, pg. 3)

    From August 26 to September 4 2002 the UN will hold the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg. It will follow up the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, and will seek to map out an agenda for sustainable use of natural resources, preservation of the environment and reduction of poverty. What are we doing about this forthcoming world summit on "people, planet and prosperity"? Who will be attending? What will we talk about there? There are very opposing views on the impact of development and of technology on the world's social and material environments. One view is that "the seas are being polluted, the forests devastated, species are being driven to extinction at record rates, the rain is acid, the ozone layer vaporising, and the rivers are so poisonous that fish are floating on the surface dead". A conflicting view is that "rivers, seas, rain and the atmosphere are getting cleaner. The total amount of forests in the world is not declining, few species are being made extinct, and many that were endangered are thriving again". Environmental degradation is usually dealt with as a largely technical issue, with technical solutions often proposed. However decisions about activities that are potentially environmentally harmful, are in fact taken on economic and political grounds. They are as much a socio-political as a technical matter. Government needs to initiate discussion of the issues to be raised at the coming conference so that people are aware of them and that Botswana adopts a defensible position that the public, by and large, is aware of.
    (Mmegi, 15-21 March 2002, pg. 32)

    Botswana's elephants, whose number has grown to 120 000, make life difficult for Batswana because they destroy crops and property, Mmadinare MP Ponatshego Kedikilwe said in Parliament. Debating the 2002/2003 budget proposals for the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Wildlife and Tourism, Kedikilwe said Botswana should approach the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES) for permission to sell some of the elephants. He said Botswana should sell its elephants before they destroy the vegetation they live on. Slumber Tsogwane of Boteti called on the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Wildlife and Tourism to collaborate with the ministries of agriculture as well as lands, housing and environment to ensure that the coexistence of animals and people takes place without on prejudicing the other.
    (Daily News, 14 March 2002, pg.2)

    The Kissama Foundation, along with the Angolan government, is relocating 150 elephants and eight other species of game from Namibia and Botswana to Quicama National Park in Angola. This massive undertaking will set the elephant and other wildlife on an incredible journey over land and sea in an operation that requires the very best professionals, equipment and planning that Africa has to offer. Some operations have already taken place during 2001 more will take place in 2002. If you would like to somehow participate to Operation Noah's Ark or if you want more information's, please contact Laurette at info@kissama.org or visit the website at www.kissama.org

    One of FFM's new year's expansion projects for improved services for support and training facilities is that they have moved to:
    Gaborone International Commerce Park - Lot 99, Unit 7. PO BOX 1761. For more information's you can contact FFM Botswana at Tel: 307444, Fax: 373086 or on email: info@ffmbots.com


    February 2002 NEWS

    The government has finished preparing for the promulgation and enactment of an overarching National Conservation Act. According to the Ministry of Lands Environment and Housing, the proposed law will be formulated within the general guidelines and objectives of the National Policy on Natural Resources on Conservation and Development, Government Paper No.1 of 1990. The main thrust of the policy is to introduce new and strategic approaches to achieve the integration of conservation of natural resources into the development process. The Ministry said the specific tasks of the consultancy are to prepare and draft instructions for the Attorney General to prepare an overarching National Conservation Strategy Act (Environmental Management Act) and also recommend the appropriate title to the proposed legislation. Amongst other things the proposed Act will ensure that there is legislative basis for the National Conservation Strategy (Coordinating) Agency; it will also harmonise or rationalise the existing environmental legislation and institutions with international instruments on environment.
    (Mmegi, 22-28 February 2002, pg.13)

    Soaps, Moisturising oils, jams and jellies made locally from Morula fruit are filling the shelves of shops countrywide. The products are made by Kgetsi ya Tsie (KyT) Community Trust in the Tswapong area. The project was started in 1997 as a social and economic empowerment vehicle for rural women. The project started with only 5 people, but now has 600 members' mainly women from 17 villages. The moisturising oil is manufactured from Morula nuts (dikgeru) and is good for skin moisturising and reducing skin redness while Morula jelly is high in vitamin C content. KyT also packages traditional medicine, monepenepe, dried vegetables from Setswana beans, Mopane worms and Gala-la-tshwene, a traditional herb. The annual income of Kyt has increased by 500% since its inception, said Moetapela, marketing coordinator and community development officer of the British high Commission. Besides the British High Commission the project has also been sponsored by USAID and the Department of Women's Affairs.
    (Botswana Daily News, 14 February 2002, pg.3)

    Southern Africa has a variety of tropical and temperate zones, but is comprised mostly of arid and semi-arid regions and desertification and drought are already threatening many areas in the sub-region. The primary element in desertification is the non-availability or near-absence of water resources, which renders the ecosystems in the area fragile. Rain is the key source of moisture in most of the world's dryland regions, and is augmented by other inputs of moisture such as dew and fog. Rainfall is unreliable and the southern African area is afflicted by frequent and severe droughts, yet most rural people rely heavily on agriculture and natural resources for their subsistence. Since most of the agricultural drylands are already degraded to some degree it is not surprising that the highest incidence of poverty occurs in the drylands. When people live in poverty they have little choice but to over-exploit the land and when the land is no longer viable to farm, they are often forced into internal and cross-border migrations, which in turn can further strain the environment and cause social and political tensions. There is an increased awareness of the relationship between desertification, migration and conflict. Many people have become displaced within their own countries or forced to move because of drought and dryland degradation and have limited access to decision making processes, resources and support systems. Ultimately, the rural poor are faced with a conflict between the short-term need for immediate food production and use of fragile resources, and the long-term requirements of conserving natural resources such as soil and forests to maintain production levels for future use.
    (Globe Southern Africa, Issue 5, Sept-Dec 2001, pg.4)

    The first event of Globe Southern Africa's Earth Summit Campaign took place in the South African parliament on 23-24 October 2001. The conference brought together over 120 delegates, including 25 parliamentarians from the South African national and provincial legislatures and a small Danish delegation. Representatives of civil society organisations and members of both the South African and international press also attended. The conference introduced parliamentarians to issues that will be deliberated in the lead-up to this year's World Summit. The political profile of the WSSD was raised and a process initiated to keep parliamentarians abreast of developments over the next year. Information's on the conference and on the Earth Summit Campaign can be found on www.globesa.org/earthsummit
    (Globe Southern Africa, Issue 5, Sept-Dec 2001, pg.1)

    Environmental Education: Chobe Wildlife Trust have just launched their Environmental Education Programme for 2002-2004 for the Chobe Sub-district. This is made of an EE Club for out of school primary children, Curriculum Support Material for Secondary schools and finally Youth Action Groups. The topics covered by the three components are wildlife, habitat management, biodiversity, CBNRM and Transboundary CBNRM (TBNRM). The Programme helps implement objective "A" and "B" of the Governments "National Environmental Education Guidelines". The annual cost of the programme is in the region of P140,000.
    CBNRM: CWT have been putting into practice some of the recommendations that arose out of the National CBNRM Conference held in November 2001. In fact, CWT have started the process of entering into a formal agreements to work on behalf of CBOs. CWT have now been sanctioned by KALEPA CBO and CECT CBO to support and empower communities to implement their CBNRM projects. The conference also recommended the establishment of CBNRM regional forums. With this in mind CWT are in discussions with BOCOBONET and the CBOs to facilitate the Chobe Sub-district CBNRM Forum. Finally, the conference recommended action on HIV/AIDS. CWT are in the process of drawing up a policy statement on HIV/AIDS for further consideration by its Trustees.
    Furthermore, Chobe Wildlife Trust are developing part of their office into an interpretation and information facility. This will include information on the work of the Trust, research in Chobe National Park and a reference library open to the public. CWT also believe that Environmental NGOs should promote each other and are planning to have a display on NGO across Botswana, their areas of work and how they can be contacted. If you would like your organisation to be included in this display or if you would like any more information on the work of CWT please contact Stephen Austin, Chief Executive Officer, at Tel 6250516 or email to cwt@botsnet.bw

    IUCN Commission on Ecosystem Management is firmly based in Botswana. The Commission Chair, Dr Hillary Masundire, Head of Biological Sciences at the University of Botswana, took full charge of the Commission in October 2001 following his election by the IUCN Council. The election became necessary after the then Commission Chair, Mr Hein Asperen of the Netherlands resigned for personal reasons. Dr Masundire becomes the first black African person to chair an IUCN Commission in the 54-year history of the Union. Dr Masundire can be contacted at masundh@mopipi.ub.bw
    Furthermore, Ms Barbara Ntheeleng Dithapo was appointed Programme Officer for the Commission from beginning of February, 2002. She works from the IUCN - Botswana Office. Her duties are to provide the day-to-day administrative functions for the Commissions and to function as the hub for the whole of the Commission. Barbara can be contacted at cem@iucnbot.bw.

    The Mokolodi Rehabilitation Centre is one of three wild animal rehabilitation centres in Botswana, and the only one in the South of the country. It opened in 1992, to provide a place where injured, orphaned, displaced and confiscated wildlife can be cared for and released back into their natural habitat. The Rehabilitation centre has the full support of the Department of Wildlife and National Parks, who requested that Mokolodi build this facility and acknowledge the provision of a valuable and integral service to nature conservation in Botswana. Since opening it has treated a wide range of wildlife, including monkeys, antelopes, striped polecats, civets, mongooses, genets, cheetah, leopard, hyena, a variety of birds including owls and hawks, snakes including pythons, cobras, among others. Furthermore, any non-releasable animals are housed in the sanctuary area, where they are cared for in enriched enclosures, representing their natural habitat. Here, they provide a valuable service for conservation education, providing a close up, interactive experience of their species for local schools, the community and visitors. This creates respect and understanding for wildlife that is so essential for the future of the natural environment.
    The Mokolodi Rehabilitation Centre has enclosures of varying sizes and designs in order to accommodate a range of wildlife, i.e. predators, birds, reptiles, etc. All this is in a large enclosed area, incorporating natural vegetation and trees. Also, there is a larger bush enclosure which houses 2 orphaned cheetah, as well as a separate transit station for relocating problem predators. Services to remove snakes from areas where they may become a problem are provided by the Centre, this is giving people the option not to kill them. Taking care of all this are a team of staff, including a volunteer wildlife biologist and veterinary. The facilities are used to the care for animals within the reserve and for those brought to the centre from all over the country. At Mokolodi, there is a breeding population of 7 white rhino, which constitutes one quarter of the entire population in Botswana and other vulnerable species, including mountain reedbuck and brown hyena. So far in 2002 Mokolodi Rehabilitation Centre has already released mountain reedbuck, which were confiscated by the Department of Wildlife and National Parks and sent to the centre for rehabilitation and 4 pythons that were relocated from human habitations. These individuals would probably have died or been killed without the facilities available at Mokolodi but now they are adding to the gene pool of these vulnerable species on a 3000ha protected reserve.
    So if you see any injured, orphaned or displaced wildlife please call Rebecca at Mokolodi Nature Reserve on 561955/6 or Kyle at 585348 or 71656782 and they will come out and assist. Be careful to make sure that the animal is truly disadvantaged before you remove it, some birds and antelopes leave their young alone for long periods of time and they may appear to be abandoned. If you are unsure just give Rebecca and Kyle a call.
    For more information's on Mokolodi visit the website www.mokolodi.com

    Alien plants have probably been resident within the Kruger National Park (KNP) since its proclamation some 100-years ago. However, the effects of these non-indigenous plants and their potential threats were most likely not fully recognised at that time. It was not until 1956 that the first control efforts were made. Despite the ongoing and intensified efforts, alien plant populations have steadily increased to the present situation where 214 alien plant species have been recorded in the KNP with an additional 150 non-indigenous species found in camps and personnel villages. These include a suite of aggressive invasive aliens that have invaded riverine zones (including Lantana camara, Melia azedarach, Mimosa pigra, Chromolaena odorata etc), aquatic plants such as Pistia stratiotes, Eichhornia crassipes, Azolla filiculoides invade dams and rivers, while terrestrial areas are invaded by Opuntia stricta. Since 1993 Biological Control agents were released onto the water lettuce infesting the Sabie River, since than the infestation is successfully controlled, with only a few plants visible along the edges of the river. Strategies used to deal with invasive plants in the KNP encompass many different aspects, aimed at not only reactive (i.e. clearing of invasions) but proactive work efforts are also being launched. For more information's on the matter contact Llewellyn Foxcroft LlewellynF@parks-sa.co.za
    (Aliens, n.13, 2001, pg.14)

    The SADC Rhino Programme webpage has been opened recently. For all those who would like to keep themselves up-dated on Rhino programme activities and gather information's please visit the webpage at www.rhino-sadc.org


    January 2002 NEWS

    Tsodilo Hills has been given the status of a World Heritage Site along with world famous landmarks like Robben Island in South Africa - a first for Botswana. The World Heritage Committee meeting in Helsinki, Finland, last month agreed to elevate the tourist area with Bushmen rock paintings to an international landmark. Ticky Pule, director of the National Museum, describes this development as a "success story, unique, since it is the first time in history of this nation that we have had a heritage site recognised internationally".
    (The Botswana Guardian, pg.2, January 11th, 2002)

    The Parliamentary Select Committee on Foreign Affairs, Trade and Security will hold a series of meetings on the draft of Botswana Tourism Board Bill from February 4th. The Terms of Reference of the Committee are to consult with appropriate stakeholders on issues raised in the draft bill, including functions, composition, authority and powers of the board. The committee will also review and investigate issues likely to impede the implementation of the desired improvements relating to tourism, as one of the engines of growth in line with the country's policy of economic diversification. According to the release, members of the public who wish to make representations are invited to a meeting on February 8th at the Parliamentary Village, Gaborone, starting at 9 in the morning.
    (Botswana Daily News, pg.2, December 16th, 2001)

    Former Botswana Technology Centre (BTC) managing director David Inger, has been appointed managing director of Veld Products Research and Development (VPR&D) with immediate effect. Inger believes that natural resources and bio-diversity are going to be amongst the key development issues in the next decade. His vision for the organisation is to see it develop into an outstanding research centre, which enables more and more communities to develop their own strategies to successfully utilise their natural resources on a sustainable basis. VPR&D is a non-profit making company formed in 1994 aimed at the sustainable utilisation of natural resources for the benefit of rural communities, noting that the emphasis is on non-timber products such as foods, medicine, gums, resins, essential oils and insects.
    (Botswana Daily News, pg.3, December 16th, 2001)

    Despite wild and domestic animals causing a lot of accidents in Kgalagadi, all major roads in the district will not be fenced in the near future. Addressing Kgalagadi council meeting, Molebedi Khuduego said, due to environmental and other factors the roads will not be fenced. He said that some of the roads are on the migratory path of wild animals and fencing them will cut off the animals from their historic migratory routes. The road Kang-Hukuntsi will not be fenced because it will cut the free movement of wild animals from the Central Kalahari Game Reserve all the way to the Trans-Frontier Park.
    (Botswana Daily News, pg.3, December 17th, 2001)

    Government is to cut off water and other essential services to several hundred Bushmen still living in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. Aside from basic water supplies, mobile health clinics and handout packages for orphaned children and the aged will also be stopped. The government is urging them to move to relocation camps but rights groups and Bushmen say they have a right to remain where they are and pursue their traditional nomadic hunter-gatherer existence. "Obviously if you have no water to drink and you have no water to give your children, you will be forced to go to the next place where water is." Molale reiterated the government argument that it was too expensive to provide services for people scattered over such a wide area. "We are not cutting water supplies. We are stating that if people need water they should know where to get the water from" he said.
    (The Botswana Guardian, pg.9, January 25th, 2002)

    Veld fires that have been ravaging Botswana appear to have negative impact on tourism sector, which is the second largest foreign exchange earner after diamonds. Some parts of the Central Kgalagadi and Kutse Game Reserve have been engulfed by fierce veld fires and vegetation has been destroyed leaving a scar of black blanket covering the desert sands. Tubers and melons, upon which wildlife depend during the dry seasons, have also been destroyed by fires, the situation which could result in migration of wildlife to better areas. Veld fires were reported at Gope, Xade, Matswere, Kighao and Kutse. Wildlife might migrate or die because of drought and this could have a negative impact on tourism sector. Although the resident wildlife is fairly sparse, large numbers of wildebeest and hartebeest used to migrate through the reserve at certain times of the year.
    (Kutlwano, December 2001, Volume 39, Issue 12, pg.42)

    How can tourism make a greater contribution to poverty reduction? Recent research assessed practical examples of 'pro-poor tourism strategies' in order to identify lessons and good practice.
    Pro-poor tourism (PPT) is tourism that generates net benefits for the poor. Rather than aiming to expand the size of the sector, pro poor tourism (PPT) strategies aim to unlock opportunities for the poor - whether for economic gain, other livelihood benefits, or engagement in decision-making. Such strategies are needed to harness the potential of tourism for pro-poor growth and poverty reduction. However, there is little experience on how to make tourism pro-poor. Recent work assessed six case studies, of which 2 are in South Africa and 1 in Namibia (http://www.propoortourism.org.uk/ppt_casestudies.html), of pro-poor tourism interventions, in order to identify good practice and assess effectiveness.
    For further information also visit: http://www.propoortourism.org.uk

    The ten countries of Southern Africa host more than 30.000 known plant species in an area of 16 million km2 . In spite of this abundance, the direct and growing dependence of the region's people on their natural resources has led to the rapid decline of many important commercial and medicinal plants. Over-exploitation, poor land-use management, and habitat loss are the major causes, but invasive plants, refugee influxes and urbanisation, inappropriate transport networks and mining also take their role. The Southern African Botanical Diversity Network (SABONET) initiated the Southern African Plant Red Data List Project to compile an account of the region's threatened p[plant diversity. Secondary objectives are to establish a regional network of persons aware of threatened plant throughout the region, and to develop competence in compiling inventories of threatened flora. South Africa's National Botanical Institute is responsible for the overall management of SABONET, which is funded through the Regional Networking and Capacity Building Initiative for Southern Africa of IUCN's Regional Office of Southern Africa. Co-supported from the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the Project is implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). For searchable databases and a guide to Southern African Red Data Lists, visit www.sabonet.org.
    (Janice Golding; The IUCN Bulletin, n.3, 2001 - Keeping an eye on the Threatened species, the IUCN Red List)

    South African Louis Liebenberg, scientist turned expert tracker, has over the past five years begun to revolutionise conservation and wildlife management techniques with the aid of a hand-held computer. At a time when the bow-and-arrow is dying out, the device is enabling southern Africa's legendary Bushmen to preserve their vanishing tracking skills and turn their unrivalled knowledge of nature's vast biodiversity into a tool for conserving species. Liebenberg's objectives are threefold: to empower the dwindling and socially marginalized Bushmen by creating employment opportunities; to revive the dying art of tracking by developing it into a modern science; and, most importantly, to create a tool for nature conservation. "To cope with unpredictable changes in various ecosystems, new innovative ways to monitor the environment are needed", explains Liebenberg. "The Cyber-Tracker field computer system integrates traditional knowledge with state-of-the-art computer and satellite science, yielding important benefits for conservation and anti-poaching programmes as well as tourism".
    (for Enterprise, The Rolex Award Journal, N.13, Winter 2002, pg.14)

    "Many people regard access to drinking water and sanitation to be a human right" (Bonn Recommendations for Action). The problem is that many people and governments do not. China for obvious reasons, the USA for less obvious reasons. To some of the more cynical of us, the Bonn Conference represented a real attempt to walk the thin line between polarised viewpoints, and to chart a real way forward. This too is the challenge for the World Summit on Sustainable Development. The International Conference on Freshwater was held in Bonn from 3 to 7 December 2001. It was an experiment in international dialogue in the sense that five major groups were identified _ NGOs, Trade Unions, Local Government, Farmers and Business _ as being key to the water sector debate. Unlike previous United Nations fora, these major groups were allocated equal status as the government delegates and therefore played an active role in the multi-stakeholder dialogue sessions, the three working groups and the plenary negotiations regarding the formulation of the "Recommendations for Action". These Recommendations for Action represents the conclusions of the Conference and was an attempt to transform the debate from policy proposals to practical actions that can be implemented.
    Outcomes of Bonn - A remarkable level of consensus was reached on the Recommendations for Action, whilst a number of critical points of contention remain. One of the key achievements of the NGO inputs was to extend the millennium target of reducing the number of people without access to water by 2015, to include halving the proportion of people without access to adequate sanitation. Other highlights of the Recommendations for Action include: * the issue of corruption was targeted; * water should be prioritised for basic needs and ecosystem purposes; * cost recovery should not be a barrier to poor people's access to water and sanitation; and * "private sector participation should not be imposed on developing countries as a conditionality for funding". Much of the debate was linked to the role of the private sector in water delivery, with a call from NGOs, Trade Unions, some industry delegates for a global evaluation of the experiences with respect to privatisation to date. This was echoed by governments, such as Yemen and Mauritius, who felt that privatisation was being imposed on them through international financial arrangement. They argued that privatising the water sector was not a sovereign decision as suggested by other delegates. Due to the repeated calls for a global evaluation of private sector involvement, the German Government concluded with their commitment to oversee the initiation of such an evaluation. The Process: To start a conference by making space for all major stakeholder groups to say exactly what they want to say is a very empowering process. It is also strategic in terms of developing the parameters of the debate for the days to come. The two dialogue sessions were on: A: Equitable Access and Sustainable Supply of Water for the Poor B: Strategies for Sustainable and Equitable Management of Water Resources (all documents are available on the web) The dialogue sessions were followed by one and a half days devoted to debate within the three working groups tasked with looking at governance, mobilising financial resources and capacity development and sharing knowledge. Both the dialogue and the working group sessions depended on good and impartial facilitators. The information was used to prepare a new draft of the Recommendations for Action, which were then debated for nine hours in plenary with equal participation by the stakeholder groups and government. Our Criticisms: Whilst the stakeholders were supposedly on an equal footing, some are "more equal than others". When the USA argued, they were heard. Others were not. A number of key points put forward repeatedly by the NGO group are absent in the outcome document: * Access to Water is a human right * Water is a common good * World Commission on Dams recommendations should be adopted * Water is not a tradable good. Many of us went to Bonn quite cynically expecting that at best, lip service would be paid to participation and that at worst Bonn would just be a guise for the promotion of the private sector involvement in water delivery. We were wrong, and this was refreshing. The German Government, which hosted the Conference, illustrated their commitment to the process and thereby demonstrated that the different sectors can work together in a spirit of partnership. For more details contact Liane Greeff, Water Justice Programme Manager, Environmental Monitoring Group Tel: (021) 448 2881 Fax: (021) 448 2922 Cel: 083 415 2365 PO Box 13378 Mowbray 7705, Cape Town, SA


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    Last Updated:February, 2002
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