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South Africa To Deport Foreign Nationals Over Protests

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African Department of Home Affairs on Friday said it was on the verge of deporting over 20 foreign nationals who embarked on protests outside the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Cape Town last year.

Siya Qoza, Spokesperson for the Minister of Home Affairs, said the deportation of asylum seekers and refugees had been confirmed by courts. They would be deported due to their immigration status.

“The affected foreign nationals have already been transferred to Lindela Repatriation Center for deportation purposes,” he said. The department also appealed to citizens to stop taking the law into their hands after businesses belonging to foreign nationals were ordered to close in Durban this week.

“There are foreign nationals who are in the country legally and are allowed to conduct business in terms of the applicable laws of the country. As such, they should not be unfairly targeted simply on the basis of their nationality,” the department added.

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South-Africa

Zimbabwe Bids Farewell To Hunger After Bumper Harvest

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Zimbabwe has reported a bumper harvest of maize and other grains capable of feeding for the next one year the country’s 14.65 million people.

According to Zimbabwe’s  Second Crop and Livestock Assessment report, traditional grains production for the ending season is estimated at 347 968 tonnes compared to 152 515 tonnes harvested in 2019/2020. The increase in production has been attributed to the amount of rainfall and its distribution.

The report has revealed that most districts in Zimbabwe are harvesting enough maize and traditional grains to last more than 12 months with only a few areas having enough to cater for six months and below.

“In addition to the good rainfall season in the 2020/2021 season, the practice of climate proofed technologies significantly contributed to the increased yield levels supported by well-coordinated input programmes.

The report says, “There was marked improvement in maize yield across the country as a result of increased amount of rainfall and good distribution from the onset of the season in November 2020 to the end of February 2021.”

Under the President Mnangagwa government, new innovations have been implemented to revamp agriculture production. Some of the innovations include; the practice of climate proofed technologies (Pfumvudza/ Intwasa).

Pfumvudza is a crop production intensification approach under which farmers ensure the efficient use of resources (inputs and labour) on a small area of land. This farming concept aims at ensuring food, nutrition and livelihood security at household level.

Pfumvudza involves the utilisation of small pieces of land and applying the correct agronomic practices for higher returns. The approach can be used in marginal areas and still give high yields.

A total of 202 037 hectares were put under Pfumvudza maize and 1 066 755 tonnes are expected from that while 50 016 tonnes of sorghum are expected from the 10 634 hectares put under Pfumvudza.

Meanwhile, last week President Emmerson Mnangagwa vowed to propel Zimbabwe to reclaim Africa’s Breadbasket crown through implementing a series of adjustments in the country’s Agriculture systems.

He was speaking at a high-level dialogue on feeding Africa , under the theme “Leadership to scale up successful innovations”.

“In Zimbabwe between 2020 and 2021, crop yield is expected to increase by 199% for maize harvest, 128% for the harvest of traditional grains (and) 94% for cotton harvest,” President Mnangagwa said last week.

President Mnangagwa targets to shift Zimbabwe into a “Prosperous and Empowered Upper Middle Income Status by 2030.”

According to President Mnangagwa, Zimbabwe’s Agriculture and Food Systems Transformation Strategy launched last year premised on achieving a US$8,2 billion agriculture economy by 2025, is anchored on climate-smart technologies, extension services and increased innovations.

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How A Career In Public Relations Helped Shape An African Royal

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To some, it might seem like an unusual career trajectory, but for Ewetse Khama, working in the Public Relations industry in Africa has been the perfect preparation for the next step in his unique journey.

From today, Ewetse is stepping down from his role at APO Group, the leading pan-African communications consultancy and press release distribution service, to serve his country and his people.

This year, Ewetse’s father, Sekgoma Tshekedi Khama, retired from active duty in the Bamangwato tribe. This made way for the eldest son, Ewetse to assume his father’s role as a Kgosi – a Batswana term meaning ‘Chief’, ‘King’ or ‘Elder’ – in the Khama Family, one of Botswana’s most prominent royal families.

The Khamas have a long and illustrious history in Botswana. Ewetse’s paternal uncle, Sir Seretse Khama, served as the country’s first President after independence in 1966, and was the subject of a Hollywood blockbuster – A United Kingdom – about his marriage to English woman Ruth Williams. Sir Seretse’s eldest son, Lieutenant General Seretse Khama Ian Khama was Botswana’s 4th President from 2008-2018.

Botswana is one of the most peaceful countries in Africa, which Ewetse attributes partly to the role that traditional leaders play as a conduit between government and the people, especially in promoting harmony and understanding. 

That might be one of the reasons the PR industry has been such a good fit for Ewetse, helping prepare him for the big challenges that lie ahead.

“I felt that I needed to do things for myself and forge my own career, instead of relying on my name or status,” Ewetse says. “As a Khama, I had so much choice in life because many doors were always open to us, I could do or be anything I wanted. But I have always felt strongly about communications and working with people, so PR seemed like the perfect choice.”

Working within the PR Agency division of APO Group has given Ewetse a grounding, and a sense of normality. It has also broadened his horizons internationally, and given him new perspectives on Africa after being educated in Europe. Ewetse believes his PR career – and his time at APO Group – will help make him a better leader.

“I’m a good listener, which is essential in PR. You listen to what somebody has to say, then you help them develop their ideas, and connect with their audiences. The key appeal to me is that Public Relations is really about creating opportunities for people.” 

Ewetse’s work with APO Group has certainly helped him do that. He has offered a guiding hand to many multinational organizations looking to navigate the diverse African media landscape. His experience and local knowledge has enabled those companies to succeed in markets that are often difficult to crack. Like all his APO Group colleagues, Ewetse is passionate about Africa, and provided customers with ‘on-the-ground’ networking and support.     

As APO Group Founder and Chairman, Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard explains: “Not everyone in our team is from African royalty! But they are all deeply attuned to the people, country and region in which they live and operate. Ewetse’s extraordinary story epitomises our commitment to local expertise, and is also a testament to APO’s talent pool across Africa.”

APO Group holds a unique position in the Public Relations industry in Africa. Formerly known as the African Press Organization, it has been providing content to media in all 54 African countries since 2007. Journalists in Africa know and trust APO Group, making them the perfect partner for companies looking to develop their presence on the continent.

Ewetse is now looking to bring the communications skills he honed in the PR industry into his new role as a Kgosi – a Batswana term meaning ‘Chief’, ‘King’ or ‘Elder’ – where his responsibilities include fostering local consensus and governance while also promoting social welfare and the economic empowerment of disadvantaged groups.

“My time at APO Group has been an important part of my career, and I am proud of the work we have done to help our multinational clients and drive business into African economies. I have great memories of the people and the experiences I’ve enjoyed along the way. They will stand me in good stead as I take this next exciting step!” 

Even though Ewetse has now moved on to serve his community and country, he will be remembered fondly by his former colleagues.

“Ewetse will always be a valued part of the APO Group team – a colleague and a friend,” Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard says. “We will miss him, of course, but APO Group’s loss is Botswana’s gain. His nation is lucky to have him. I am grateful for the fact that, thanks to our fantastic team, our clients across Africa will continue to receive a royal standard of quality service!

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South-Africa

Zimbabwe Vows To Reclaim Africa’s Breadbasket Crown

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President Emmerson Mnangagwa has vowed to propel Zimbabwe to reclaim Africa’s Breadbasket crown through implementing a series of adjustments in the country’s Agriculture systems.

He made the remarks on Thursday while presenting at the high-level virtual meeting on feeding Africa , under the theme “Leadership to scale up successful innovations”.

This high-level dialogue was attended by Heads of States and Government.

Mnangagwa said African countries must share experiences on technology and innovations to transform agriculture.

“Once more we shall become the breadbasket of Africa. In Zimbabwe between 2020 and 2021, crop yield is expected to increase by 199% for maize harvest, 128% for the harvest of traditional grains (and) 94% for cotton harvest,” President Mnangagwa said on Twitter.

President Mnangagwa said his Government launched the National Development Strategy 1 aimed at attaining a “Prosperous and Empowered Upper Middle Income Status by 2030,” whose main thrust is to achieve food and nutrition security and accelerate value addition and beneficiation.

According to him Zimbabwe’s Agriculture and Food Systems Transformation Strategy launched last year premised on achieving a US$8,2 billion agriculture economy by 2025, is anchored on climate-smart technologies, extension services and increased innovations.

“To alleviate the challenges associated with agriculture financing, the Agricultural Finance Corporation has been established. Models of strengthening existing contract farming arrangements are constantly reviewed to increase overall agriculture productivity, profitability, and fairness, over and above the access to finance aspect.”

Mnangagwa said there was a need for bold and decisive leadership to climate-proof agriculture against the vagaries of the weather as well as pandemics such as Covid-19.

“It is imperative that we ensure the existence of a well-functioning agriculture knowledge, technology and innovation ecosystem, anchored on requisite agronomic and animal husbandry practices.

“My Government has identified an array of key programs and projects for the transformation of agriculture. These include the climate-proofing Pfumvudza/lntwasa concept; design, construction, rehabilitation and expansion of irrigation infrastructure; adoption of efficient water use technologies; promotion of the highly nutritious traditional grains; agriculture mechanisation; as well as soil conditioning and fertility management, among others,” the President said.

The virtual meeting was also attended by the president of the African Development Bank (ADB), Dr Akinwumi A Adesina, president of the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD), Dr Gilbeft F Houngbo, executive chairman of the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, Right Hon Tony Blair and chief executive officer of the Dangote Group, Mr Alhaji Aliko Dangote.

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