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Former ZTA CEO Kaseke dies

By Lastword Musekiwa Former Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) Chief Executive Officer Karikoga Kaseke has died. He was 62. In an interception his wife Irene Kaseke confirmed that Kaseke died at a hospital in Harare, where he was admitted following deterioration in his health. Kaseke suffered a stroke in 2018, which forced him to retire from ZTA in 2021 on health grounds. Mourners are gathered at number 38 Boscobel Drive West, Highlands in Harare.

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Zimbabwe takes part in Meetings Africa held in Johannesburg

By Lastword Musekiwa Zimbabwe was part of the 18th Edition of Meetings Africa that was held from 26-28 February in Johannesburg, South Africa. Tourism and Hospitality Industry Deputy Minister Tongai Mnangagwa led a delegation consisting of officials from government, the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority and other tourism stakeholders into Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) business namely, African Sun Hotels, Rainbow Tourism Group, VIctoria Falls Hotel, Airports Company of Zimbabwe, and Zimbabwe International Trade Events. The continental event creates a market access platform, for African Business Events Products and serves as the primary platform for the growth of the business events industry in Africa with the aim of growing economies. Zimbabwean players used the opportunity to tap into the lucrative MICE industry and built new contacts for more business. At least 380 companies from 21 African nations exhibited at the event. Zimbabwe took the opportunity to unlock the MICE market potential as the country seeks to achieve a US$5 billion tourism sector by 2025 in line with Vision 2030. Meanwhile Zambian High Commissioner to South Africa Mazuba Monze paid a courtesy call on Deputy Minister Mnangagwa at the Zimbabwe Stand and invited Zimbabwe to participate at the Zambia Travel Expo (ZATEX) 2024 being held from 13 to 15 June at the Mulungushi International Conference Centre in Lusaka.

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Zinara to roll out e-tolling this year

The Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) will begin rolling out e-tolling before the end of the year to improve efficiency, motorists’ convenience and reduce operational costs. E-tolling is a cashless system that allows road users to make payments for road use with card facilities or e-tags at toll gates, with payments being made without vehicles having to stop. The process does not require physical toll booths on the highways and the first pilot project is expected to run before the end of June this year. Plans are also afoot to upgrade three tollgates to toll plazas as the Second Republic moves to ease congestion and boost revenue collection. Giving an update on disbursement of funds in Harare yesterday, Zinara board chairman Dr George Manyaya said preparations for the roll out of e-tolling had moved a gear up.   “The recent coming into effect of SI 5 of 2023 which allows Zinara to upgrade and maintain tolling infrastructure as well as the environs is highly appreciated as it empowers the administration to effectively create a conducive business environment for its operations and now you can probe Zinara if you see potholes at tollgates. “The tender for e-tolling closed this month. This will see us rolling out e-tolling before year end and this modernisation effort will streamline toll collection, reduce waiting times and provide a more convenient and seamless experience for motorists. “This is highly appreciated as it empowers the administration to effectively create a conducive business environment for its operations.” For the year ended December 31, 2023, Zinara collected $868 billion against a revised budget of $768 billion. “As we continue to fund these key road projects, I urge our esteemed councils or rather road authorities to uphold the highest standards of quality,” Dr Manyaya said. “The works we deliver must be durable, reflecting the trust and investment of the Zimbabwean people. As you may be aware, the country suffered a significant road infrastructure maintenance gap which, as the new Zinara board, we are working flat out to ensure that we recover from in the not-so-distant future. “We are therefore cognisant that the money that we collect and disburse for the core purposes of road maintenance may not be adequate for the job at hand.”

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Called for an equitable global trading system

Foreign Affairs and International Trade Deputy Minister Sheillah Chikomo has called for an equitable global trading system, and an end to the use of coercive measures against developing countries.Speaking on the sidelines of the ongoing World Trade Organisation 13th Ministerial Conference in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates yesterday , the Deputy Minister said imposition of sanctions has a severe impact on the trading capability and inclusion in global commerce.The conference is a key event in the WTO calendar, and provides an opportunity for member countries to share their views on trade issues and work towards finding solutions to challenges facing the global economy.

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Major roads in Harare closed for rehabilitation

Major roads in Harare have been closed for massive rehabilitation ahead of the 44th Southern African Development Community (SADC) Heads of State and Government Summit scheduled to be held in Harare in August.At least 40 greater roads in and around the city have been lined up for the rehabilitation exercise which is being spearheaded by the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development.Yesterday, there was congestion on the capital city’s major roads like Julius Nyerere, Samora Machel Avenue, Abdel Gamal Nasser and Leopold Takawira Street as construction companies were hard at work.The roads infrastructure where the ministry shall apply asphaltic concrete overlay includes Samora Machel (Jaggers to Kuwadzana Roundabout), Dieppe roundabout, Glenara/Samora junction, Glenara/ED Mnangagwa Road, Chiremba (through Braeside), Robert Mugabe/Abdel Gamal Nasser, Josiah Tongogara, Harare Drive roundabout Jaggers, Lomagundi Road (selected sections), Simon Muzenda Street/Robert Mugabe junction to Tongogara Road, and Simon Muzenda Street/Robert Mugabe junction to Tongogara Road.In a statement, the ministry confirmed the developments and said they anticipate the procurement process for the Greater Harare Roads to be concluded and works to commence before March 31, 2024.“The Republic of Zimbabwe shall be hosting the 44th SADC Heads of State and Government Summit in August this year,” reads the statement.“As part of the preparatory works, the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development is tasked with constructing and rehabilitating road infrastructure to facilitate efficient and smooth flow of the delegates and the citizenry during the summit. The ministry has initiated a procurement process for the above Greater Harare roads to engage the contractors that are compliant under Category A to participate in the tender through competitive bidding to ensure that there is value for money.“The SADC Summit roads construction works include the urban section of the Harare-Chirundu Road project from Julius Nyerere Way to Westgate traffic circle (Second Street and Lomagundi Road), which is being rehabilitated, widened, and dualised and includes street lighting and landscaping.“The ministry has directed the contractor apportioned that section on the Harare-Chirundu Road project, Fossil Contracting, to immediately prioritise the works for completion on or before July 31, 2024.”The ministry said the Harare-Chirundu Road was approved by Cabinet last year in May and the groundbreaking ceremony was done on February 2, 2024.Furthermore, the ministry has also directed Exodus and Company which is implementing the Harare-Kanyemba Road Project to prioritise the urban section from the Lomagundi intersection with Second Street to the new Parliament Boulevard main access.

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Government replaces Cala, introduces school based projects

The Continuous Assessment Learning Activities (CALA) have, with immediate effect, been replaced with the new school-based projects of practical applications with the number of areas covered by the non-examination process reduced from about eight to one for each subject.Learners in primary schools will now be offered a maximum of six learning areas instead of a minimum of 27, which they used to do, while Form 1 to 4 learners will have five compulsory learning areas.In line with the Second Republic policy of leaving no one and no place behind, the Government is also ensuring the provision of conducive teaching and learning infrastructure in rural areas, small-scale and commercial farming areas as well as old and new resettlement areas.Speaking after yesterday’s Cabinet meeting in Harare, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Dr Jenfan Muswere, said Cabinet received and approved the Heritage-Based Education 2024-2030.Dr Muswere said it was presented by the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development, Professor Amon Murwira, as the chairperson of the Cabinet Committee on Human Capital Development, Skills Development and Application.Heritage-based education would be anchored on the pillars of programmes or learning areas infrastructure, staffing infrastructure, physical and digital infrastructure, legal and regulatory infrastructure and financial infrastructure.“Pertinent issues in the learning programmes infrastructure include rationalisation of learning areas and strengthening the school-based continuous assessment.“At infant level (ECD A to Grade 2), learning areas are being reduced from the previous 11 to six.“The reduction will also apply at junior level in Grades 3 to 7. At secondary school level, the core and compulsory learning areas are being reduced from seven to five. An inclusive and integrated approach will be used to cater for learners with special needs, including thorough provision of assistive devices,” Dr Muswere said.The review of the assessment modalities and tools would entail the rationalisation of CALA activities, now denoted as school-based projects, which emphasise on the learner being observed carrying out the practical aspects at school.It had been envisaged that the identification of pathways would be implemented early when enrolling learners for secondary education in order to cater for differences in talent and ability.

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