MASERU – The LESOTHO Government has dismissed as false information alleging Prime Minister THOMAS THABANE has been in poor health, saying he is alive and healthy – with no signs of illness.

The Press Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office says the allegations are just propaganda by opposition parties to discredit the Premier.

THABO THAKALEKOALA says Prime Minister THABANE has been attending the Universal Exposition 2020 in DUBAI, the UNITED ARAB EMIRATES.

In another development, the Deputy Prime Minister has told delegates to a Cabinet Retreat in the capital, MASERU, creation of jobs, especially the youth, should be at the heart of government plans.

MONYANE MOLELEKI says the past has been painful for the nation – as it was marked by political instability, unemployment, and human harassment, which led to the current economic fragility.

He says the authorities should be determined to make a positive difference as challenges that also include insecurity and polarisation in politics left many BASOTHO vulnerable.

Deputy Prime Minister MOLELEKI says the Cabinet Retreat shows ministers are determined to achieve a peaceful environment for all.

He says a well-planned budget will allow the country to reach expected constitutional, security and media reforms; and at the end of the Retreat, they will have basic knowledge of the procedures that guide budget preparations.

The author of WHY AFRICA IS POOR – AND WHAT AFRICANS CAN DO ABOUT IT, GREGORY MILLS, has made a presentation at the gathering.

He says the nation must deal with its central challenges that include an unstable political system and a concerning security environment, in order to position LESOTHO for prosperity.

Mr MILLS says LESOTHO should consider its proximity to SOUTH AFRICA as a chance for growth and it must capitalise on its great natural wealth like water, which has the capacity to contribute to development.

The LESOTHO Cabinet Retreat was to come up with ideas for the National Strategic Development Plan Number TWO to be implemented in the next FIVE years; and to approve the priorities for the 2018 to 2019 National Budget./Sabanews/cam


Epilepsy patient killed and burned on suspicion of being a bloodsucker


LILONGWE – Widespread claims of bloodsuckers continue to haunt Southern MALAWI despite pledges by traditional leaders to end the controversial practice, which they believe is taking place.

However, the NYASA TIMES says some donors and church leaders have rubbished such declarations as mere folklores that people should dismiss.

It quotes GERMAN Ambassador JURGEN BORSCH as saying the myth is affecting development because since the claims started making rounds donor works have been unable to reach the affected areas.

The GERMAN Envoy, the DANISH CHURCH AID, and the NORWEGIAN CHURCH AID, have joined the EVANGELICAL ASSOCIATION OF MALAWI to condemn the killing of some people suspected to be bloodsuckers.

The TIMES says they have spoken on the side-lines of an information dissemination conference for the NZATONSE Project in the capital, LILONGWE, saying MALAWIANS should work together to ensure they demystify bloodsucking allegations.

Ambassador BORSCH says there is no doubt this is just a myth, and there is need to work together and say the same message that there are no bloodsuckers because the allegations are also threatening the security of many.

Country Directors of the DANISH CHURCH AID and the NORWEGIAN CHURCH AID have concurred with him, saying the allegations have the potential to spread nationwide and bring fear among the people.

They say it is vital for conferences where there are a variety of stakeholders from different backgrounds to start condemning and telling people the truth that these allegations are just mere fabrications.

A Spokesperson for the TWO religious aid groups, FINN PETERSEN, says there is completely no proof that MALAWI is having bloodsuckers.

EVANGELICAL ASSOCIATION OF MALAWI Secretary General Reverend FRANCIS MKANDAWIRE says MALAWIANS should FIRST address the root causes of the allegations to ensure they do not resurface in future.

The MALAWIAN Cleric has further suggested a commission of enquiry be instituted to established the root cause and lasting solutions to the bloodsuckers story, which has seen mobs of scared villagers killing suspected vampires./Sabanews/cam


The banned daily


DAR ES SALAAM – The government of TANZANIA has banned a daily newspaper and its on-line service for lying about the levels of HIV infections in the SADC country.

The DAILY NEWS says the TANZANIA DAIMA will not be operating for the next THREE months after it claimed 67 percent of the population was living on ARVs.

Information Services Department Director and Government Spokesperson HASSAN ABBASI has revealed the move in a statement in the commercial capital, DAR ES SALAAM.

He says the TANZANIA DAIMA Editor has apologized for publishing the misleading information, but the Minister of Information, Culture, Arts and Sports has had no choice except to act because of past events.

Mr ABBASI says the State has been issuing a number of reminders to the publication to respect the national laws and the basics governing the profession of journalism, after committed many offences.

In DECEMBER last year, had a headline saying DANGOTE Aivuruga Serikali, (kiSWAHILI for ‘DANGOTE Confuses the Government’) and told lies about the Minister of Industries, Trade and Investment – and failed to validate the information.

In mid-MAY this year, it carried yet another provocative article headed Mchanga Hofu Tupu, which defamed and mocked the government – pretending to quote Attorney General GEORGE MASAJU.

The DAILY NEWS says the TANZANIA DAIMA Editor then wrote a letter apologising to the authorities, admitting the quotes were not the words of the Attorney General.

Nevertheless, the Editor published yet another story in AUGUST this year – with a headline saying Polisi Wasaka BOMBADIER kwa LISSU (meaning ‘Police search for BOMBARDIER at LISSU’s premises’).

The headline insinuated the law-enforcement agents had gone to the home of opposition MP TUNDU LISSU to search for an aircraft, BOMBADIER Q-400, that the State bought but was seized in CANADA – which was a mockery of the government and its police force.

The authorities demanded an apology to be published on 25 AUGUST 2017, but the Editor of TANZANIA DAIMA only decided to do so on 26 AUGUST this year.

The government of TANZANIA says it has, this time, had to invoke the relevant legal instrument after the daily newspaper suggested only 37 percent of the population was free of HIV, as the rest of TANZANIANS were on ARVs./Sabanews/cam


Healthy eating requires lots of vegetables


VICTORIA – SEYCHELLES is the most vegetarian-friendly country, according to a new Global Vegetarian Index by OLIVER’S TRAVELS, an online villa-booking website.

The researchers have calculated the index based on the national meat consumption per person each year and the number of vegetarian restaurants in relation to population size.

The study, to identify the most-vegetarian countries, as OCTOBER is the World Vegetarian Month, places the SADC island nation FIRST ahead of THAILAND and MALAYSIA.

SEYCHELLES News Agency, SNA, quotes a nutrition expert from the Ministry of Health as saying the country has raised a lot of awareness on healthy lifestyles and a balanced diet among the people.

STEPHANIE DESNOUSSE says the exercise has no doubt, transcended in the food that families eat every day and in the restaurants as well; although there is need for caution with the rating.

She says SEYCHELLES has a wide variety of vegetables and fruits available but it is most likely more travellers are dining in restaurants than the locals do because of the high prices of such foods.

SNA says ONE of the hotels promoting healthy living is LE MERIDIEN FISHERMAN’S COVE located at BEL OMBRE in the northern parts of MAHE, the main island.

It quotes the Food and Beverage Manager as saying they provide a vegetarian option on all their menus and make a special dish for a guest according to his or her dietary requirements.

JULIEN JACQUIN says the hotel further offers a salad bar and vegetable soup every day, while their chef meets up with guests who have dietary requirements so they can discuss; a personalized service.

A lover of gastronomy (art of choosing, cooking, and eating good food), SONY ANTAT, has told the news agency fine dining experience in SEYCHELLES varies from ONE restaurant to another, and most of them serve vegetables with almost every meal./Sabanews/cam


Acting Prime Minister MONYANE MOLELEKI


MASERU – LESOTHO has come up with 16 and 17 NOVEMBER as the dates for a planned multi-stakeholder national dialogue, aimed to help bring lasting peace to the mountain Kingdom.

RADIO LESOTHO says Acting Prime Minister MONYANE MOLELEKI has announced the decision when he opened a TWO-day-long Post-Elections National Dialogue organised by the LESOTHO COUNCIL OF NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANISATIONS.

It says he has told delegates to the gathering at the MANTHABISENG Convention Centre the government has consulted other parties involved and come up with a program, in line with SADC decisions.

Mr MOLELEKI says his country advocates for common values and hopes such as promotion of peace and security, respect for human rights, good governance and the rule of law as enshrined in the Constitution and articulated through the Foreign Policy.

He has commended members of the civil society for their efforts to bring the Kingdom to stability since the military coup attempt of 2014, especially in light of the volatile political situation that followed.

Acting Prime Minister MOLELEKI says civil society, including faith-based organisations, has remained devoted to mediation efforts to bring peace to LESOTHO during these challenging times.

He has further commended the SADC Facilitator to LESOTHO, Vice President CYRIL RAMAPHOSA of SOUTH AFRICA, as well as the Regional Oversight Committee, for selfless efforts to help resolve differences and bring about lasting peace.

Acting Prime Minister MOLELEKI says the determinations are a clear indication of the commitment of SADC to maintain and further strengthen the already existing cooperation between his country and other regional members.

He says the last FOUR years are a period when LESOTHO has been in a political turmoil due to a number of issues, including what he calls floor crossing in Parliament, to the detriment of peace and security.

Acting Prime Minister MOLELEKI says BASOTHO have a common destiny that compels them to work closely to defeat their common enemies like crime, corruption, lack of youth unemployment, HIV and AIDS, as well as poverty and others.

The just ended TWO-day-long Post-Election Dialogue has been meant to discuss events following the 2017 National Assembly Elections, and it involved political parties as well as non-governmental groups from LESOTHO and abroad./Sabanews/cam



MASERU – LESOTHO is recovering from a serious military and political discord over the past months, and the government is calling on the citizens of the Kingdom to unite during this period.

Deputy Prime Minister MONYANE MOLELEKI says the opening of Parliament next FRIDAY is a vital moment, when the nation will launch the process to implement decisions of the SADC Regional leadership.

RADIO LESOTHO says Deputy Prime Minister MOLELEKI has addressed the Kingdom, saying the government has so far taken the actions it can afford on its own.

He says serious and genuine investigations are underway into the deaths of Lieutenant General MAAPARANKOE MAHAO, the Former Army Commander shot dead by soldiers in his village home on 25 JUNE 2015.

Deputy Prime Minister MOLELEKI says police are investigating, arresting and bringing before the courts of law all the members of the security forces implicated in the criminal activities.

His comments come amid reports saying the law-enforcement agents have picked up former Defence Force Commander Lieutenant General TLALI KAMOLI on an array of charges, including murder.

General KAMOLI is to answers many questions about the instability in the Kingdom, including the 2014 coup attempt and the killing of former Army boss MAAPARANKOE MAHAO and the Army Commander KHOANTLE MOTSOMOTSO.

Deputy Prime Minister MOLELEKI says BASOTHO will unite and face the challenges in order to write a new chapter for the nation together; and he calls on others out of the country for political reasons to come and freely take part in all the areas of the reform process.

He says the government has decided to take all actions necessary to ensure the safe, comfortable and respectful return to LESOTHO of MATHIBELI MOKHOTHU, MOTHEJOA METSING and TS’ELISO MOKHOSI.

The LESOTHO Deputy Prime Minister says a THREE-member delegation led by THESELE MASERIBANE assisted by the High Commissioner to SOUTH AFRICA, RALECHATE ‘MOKOSE, will meet the THREE men to discuss their return home./Sabanews/cam


Paramount Chief NGOLONGOLIWA of the LHOMWE


CHIRADZURU – Paramount Chief NGOLONGOLIWA of the LHOMWE in the MULANJE District of Southern MALAWI has pledged to fight suspected witches allegedly sucking the blood of humans in his area.

The traditional leader, also known as the MWENE WA MAMWENE of the MULHAKO WA ALHOMWE grouping, has assured the government and his people village heads will catch the suspects by the end of this OCTOBER.

NYASA TIMES newspaper says he made the remarks at a primary school in CHIRADZURU District, where President PETER MUTHARIKA heard testimonies from some of the blood sucking victims.

The Head of State has warned the suspected vampires to stop terrorising communities, saying village chiefs should help stop the people who are using witchcraft to suck human blood.

The TIMES says he has visited the area after serious reports of a vampire scare in some districts of the southern region, which triggered mob violence and left about SEVEN people dead.

Scared villagers have recently taken the law into their own hands and mobbed people suspected to be members of the vampire crusade since mid-SEPTEMBER.

The publication says beliefs in witchcraft are widespread in Rural MALAWI, ONE of the world’s poorest countries, where many aid agencies and NGOs are working.

It quotes Paramount Chief NGOLONGOLIWA as saying reports of bloodsuckers are not a myth, but real acts of witchcraft by some magicians who want to undermine the powers of traditional leaders.

He says such people can only be dealt with by traditional leaders, because the police do not have the capacity to fight their powers.

Senior Chief MPAMA of CHIRADZURU District has also echoed the same sentiments, saying traditional leaders are now well equipped for the battle against the suspected vampires.

Meanwhile, the MALAWIAN Head of State has pleaded with the people to stay calm, as his government has deployed a number of police officers to protect communities during the widespread bloodsucking scare./Sabanews/cam



ZANZIBAR CITY – Members of the ZANZIBAR House of Representatives have been advised to avoid abuse of social media and the internet, especially use of emotional and offensive statements.

The DAILY NEWS says officers from the Communications Regulatory Authority have made the call during a seminar on the Cyber Crime Act 2015, learnt about the law before its application extends to the Islands.

The lawmakers have hard why the law was introduced, its challenges in implementation on the Mainland, different types of crimes under the law, and ethical behaviour when online.

ZANZIBAR comprises the INDIAN Ocean islands of ZANZIBAR, or UNGUJA, as well as PEMBA and 48 others, which joined TANGANYIKA in 1964 to form the United Republic of TANZANIA, but is a semi-autonomous territory with its own Parliament and President.

TANZANIA Communications Regulatory Authority Senior Legal Officer PHILIP FILIKUNJOMBE has told the ZANZIBARI lawmakers to observe ethics, even when they are attacked.

He says they should not respond using offensive language because they may also be committing a crime.

TANZANIA National Assembly Speaker ZUBEIR ALI MAULID has told the legislators they need to understand the Cyber Crime Act and communicate the message to their respective constituencies to minimize offences on the fast growing online and social media.

Cyber Crimes are different offences committed online, using the internet through computers, laptops, tablets, internet-enabled televisions, game consoles and smart phones.

The TANZANIA Cyber crimes Act 2015 makes provisions for criminalising offences related to computer systems, although the law already enforced on the Mainland, is not fully operational in ZANZIBAR./Sabanews/cam



DAR ES SALAAM – Climate Action Network TANZANIA has carried out a joint study with THREE foreign expert organisations to determine the potential to use renewable energy in the country.

The DAILY NEWS newspaper says researchers have produced a report saying at current trends, all the electricity produced within TANZANIA will come from renewable energy sources by 2050.

It says the study, dubbed 100 Percent Renewable Energy for TANZANIA, has been unveiled in the commercial capital, DAR ES SALAAM.

The report says new renewable energy, including mainly wind, photovoltaic systems, ocean and geothermal energy, will then contribute 75 percent to the total electricity consumed.

Climate Action Network TANZANIA jointly carried out the study with the BREAD FOR THE WORLD, a social services group in MASSACHUSETTS; as well as the WORLD FUTURE COUNCIL and the LILIENSTR INSTITUTE of GERMANY.

The researchers say they have used energy scenario software for the long-term projections and economic parameters developed by the GERMAN Aerospace Centre.

They say almost all renewable energy in TANZANIA is technically and economically possible, a realistic pathway to align with the PARIS Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

JOACHIM FUNFGELT of the GERMAN-based BREAD FOR THE WORLD says with renewable energy, TANZANIA will be able to eradicate poverty and advance itself to become middle-income country./Sabanews/cam



MAPUTO – The government of MOZAMBIQUE has increased the price of petrol by more than THREE percent, effective from today (WEDNESDAY).

RADIO MOZAMBIQUE says the information is in a press release from the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy.

It says ONE litre of petrol has gone up to about 98 US cents from just more than 94, at current exchange rates, which is an increase of THREE-POINT-FOUR percent.

However, the authorities have left the price of diesel is unchanged, at 87 US cents per litre; and the price of domestic cooking gas also remains at 95 cents per kilogram.

MOZAMBIQUE reviews fuel prices every month and alters them whenever the import price, expressed in meticais, changes by more than THREE percent; depending on the world market and the exchange rate against the US dollar./Sabanews/cam