News and Information

New cabinet full of new faces
November 11, 2004
11 November, 2004

GABORONE - The new Cabinet announced by President Festus Mogae, following his re-election, has many new faces, some who are entering Parliament for the first time.

Former Attorney General Phandu Skelemani is the new Minister for Presidential Affairs and Public Administration.

The Francistown East legislator brings to the Ministry of State President, a wealth of legal experience spanning 30 years.

Skelemani has a Law Degree from the University of Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland and is also an advocate of High Court of Botswana.

Neo Moroka, a newcomer to the House, is the Minister of Trade and Industry.

He holds a Master of Science in Animal and Rangeland Ecology from New Mexico University and a Bachelor of Science in Wildlife Fisheries Ecology.

He worked for Barclays Bank from 1984 to 1991 as an agricultural advisor.

The MP for Kgalagadi South then joined BP Botswana as managing director and was promoted to the BP Group leadership, as one of the 300 BP leaders worldwide.

Also entering the House for the first time is Kitso Mokaila. The new Minister for Environment, Wildlife and Tourism is a former army officer.

He joined the BDF in 1980 after he graduated from Swaziland College of Technology as an auto technician.

While in the BDF he went to study in India for a degree in mechanical engineering. He held the rank of captain when he retired from the army in 1988.

After leaving the army, he held managerial positions at International Computing Limited (ICL) company, Hyundai Motor Distributors, and Wheels of Africa and Unisis Africa.

Another novice is Ramadeluka Seretse, who has been appointed to lead the Ministry of Lands and Housing. He was one of the first recruits to join the newly formed Botswana Defence Force in 1977, after completing secondary education at Molefi. He left the army at the rank of brigadier.

While in the army, he studied law at the University of Botswana and University of Edinburg, Scotland. He served as a director of welfare and recreation and was an assistant chief of staff (Human Resources), which also encompasses legal services, in the BDF.

There are two new women in Cabinet, Professor Sheila Tlou and Moggie Mbaakanyi. Tlou goes to the health ministry while the country is reeling under ailments such as HIV/AIDS.

Tlou comes in armed with a PhD in nursing sciences, and certificates in womenís health and gender studies from the University of Illinois in the United States of America (US).

She also holds a Master of Science in nursing and Masters Degree in Nursing Education and Instruction from Catholic University of America and Columbia University respectively.

Before her appointmentTlou, who is a specially elected MP, was a professor of nursing in the Faculty of Education and an HIV/AIDS co-ordinator at the University of Botswana.

Mbaakanyi, who is also a specially elected MP, has vast experience in the education field. The assistant minister holds an MA in Education from Britainís Leeds University, a BA as well as a concurrent certificate in education from the then University of Botswana Lesotho and Swaziland.

She had been a teacher for 18 years before becoming principal of Molepolole College of Education (MCE) until 1994 when she left to establish Target Meat Industries in Lobatse. Mbaakani is a former mayor of Lobatse.

The Assistant Minister in the Ministry of Works and Transport, Frank Ramsden, is also new to Parliament .A graduate of the University of Botswana Lesotho and Swaziland with a Bachelor of Arts Degree, he once worked for Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) as an administrator for 10 years.

Tshomarelo Okavango Conservation then employed him as an administrator until 1994 when he ventured into commercial farming.

The MP for Maun West also worked for Tyre Services and Tawana Land Board.

Mbiganyi Tibone is the new Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources.

He served in the public service in the Ministry of Home Affairs after completing his studies at the University of Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland.

The Tati West legislator also served in various foreign missions, including Washington and London before he was appointed permanent secretary.

Tibone, has among other qualifications, a post graduate degree on international relations, international economics and international law from Oxford University. After his retirement from the public service, he joined the private sector and is managing director of Gaborone Delta.

Ambrose Masalila, the incumbent Nkange MP, has been appointed Assistant Minister of Local Governmnt. He performed different tasks in the Ministry of Local Government, starting as a district administration clerk after completing secondary education at St Josephís College.

He rose through the ranks to district commissioner and to deputy permanent secretary before joining the Botswana Diamond Valuing Company (BDVC).

He was councillor for Nswazwi from 1994 and also had a five-year stint as chairman of the Central District Council.

Former Southern District Council chairman, and now MP for Ngwaketse South Peter Siele is the Assistant Minister of Agriculture.

Also a new member, he is expected to use the vast experience acquired from the Department of Co-operatives in his new job. He was an instructor at the Botswana Agricultural College (BAC) and later became deputy establishment secretary in the local government ministry.

Before entering active politics, he was the chief immigration officer in the Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs. He holds a Diploma in human resources management from Britainís Loughborough University.


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