Botswana: No BVI Deal for Namibia

The interest shown by the Namibian government to purchase shares in Botswana Vaccine Institute (BVI) will not be acceded to, due to the institute's contract with Botswana government.

It is said that Namibia had during that joint permanent commission meeting in 2011 indicated their interest in purchasing shares in the BVI.

Minister of Agriculture, Mr Patrick Ralotsia said when hosting the Namibia minister of agriculture, water and forestry, Mr John Mutorwa, that it was unfortunate that the proposal could not be agreed to by either BVI or Botswana government because the contract precluded involvement of various stakeholders as shareholders.

He said if Botswana was to agree, it would mean breach of contract, while consequence of the breach would therefore mean experience the consequence which would affect not only Botswana and Namibia, but the rest of the beneficiaries of the BVI.

However, Mr Ralotsia noted the vaccine production company would through the Ministry of Agriculture continue to supply Namibia with vaccines, especially the Foot and Mouth Disease vaccine, as in the past the two governments had collaborated in the fight against the disease.

Furthermore, Mr Ralotsia said Botswana sold about 400 pallets per year through Agricorp in Namibia, which is a collection centre for Southern Africa, before they are sent to countries such as Denmark.

He also said Botswana and Namibia had collaborated well in a number of ventures such as the eradication of Tsetse fly in the Chobe district.

On another issue, minister Ralotsia made a proposal to his counterpart that Botswana benefit from state owned abattoir in Katimamolelo by availing market for Chobe district farmers whose market was minimal because of the Foot and Mouth Disease.

Meanwhile, Mr Mutorwa said currently activities at the Katimamolelo abattoir were at a standstill due to financial conditions.

He added that the Zambezi region in Namibia was one of the parts where the occurrence of FMD was prevalent because of the presence of buffaloes, something which was also a challenge to the abattoir.

He however commended Botswana for the successful collaborations the two countries had in the fight of the FMD, while they also collaborated with Angola as a neighbour in the northern side to deal with FMD.

Mr Mutorwa said Namibia relied on the Botswana Vaccine Institute where they purchased some vaccines that they used to combat FMD.

Source: Botswana Daily News