Botswana Qualifications Authority (BQA) completed the second historic countrywide tour yesterday (Friday) in their bid to educate the public about the BQA mandate and services. Also key to it was to sensitize the public about transitional arrangements that BQA is undergoing.
The general public was advised to verify that the education training providers they enroll with are registered by BQA and that their programmes are accredited. The tour which started on the 5th November to the 17th was another huge milestone and a success story by BQA after the first one which started from August 9th to September 2nd2017.
The tour which began two weeks ago at Letlhakane ended in Mahalapye on Friday having visited Masunga, Tutume, Francistown, Selibe Phikwe, Bobonong, Serowe and Mahalapye. The first tour was mainly stakeholder engagements and embraced largely by Education and Training Providers (ETPs). The second one which to some degree focused mostly on the central district comprised of two sessions a day; Kgotla meetings in the morning where they fully engaged with parents mostly and road show activations in the afternoon where they pulled large crowds which comprised mainly of the youth.
It has become evident during Kgotla meetings that many parents have become victims of fly by night schools that operate parallel to BQA and in the process losing more money trying to educate their children. Similar cases were cited by many parents in different villages who continue to be victims of this growing cartel.
During their presentations they assured Batswana that the institution is committed to processing accreditation of higher education learning programmes with enrolled learners and has drawn a project plan to structure and monitor the exercise. They advised the public that ETPs are legally allowed to enroll learners in programmes that are currently registered, approved or accredited until December 2017.
The transitional arrangement as provided for by Regulation 22 of the Botswana Qualifications Authority (Registration and Accreditation of Learning Programmes) Regulations, 2016, which states that “an education and training provider who, at the coming into operation of these Regulations, which was 4th January 2017, has been carrying on the business or activity of the education and training shall within 12 months of the coming into operation of these Regulations comply with the provisions of these regulations”.
Furthermore the public was educated on evaluation of qualifications. Following several cases of forgery where people forge qualifications for better paying jobs and high positions, BQA can tap in to verify the authenticity of local and external qualifications and compare external qualifications with Botswana qualifications. It is a process of analyzing external qualifications in terms of their country of origin and context. The process leads to recommendations which inform the process of recognition.
To drive home the message amongst the youth, this time around BQA brought a road show truck with big sound system and an energetic band that always pulled the crowd wherever they go. The tour was a huge success and yet another historic milestone achieved by Botswana Qualification Authority in the year 2017.
The outgoing President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ian Kirby, shares his thoughts with us as he leaves the Bench at the end of this year.
WeekendPost: Why did you move between the Attorney General and the Bench?
Ian Kirby: I was a member of the Attorney General’s Chambers three times- first in 1969 as Assistant State Counsel, then in 1990 as Deputy Attorney General (Civil), and finally in 2004 as Attorney General. I was invited in 2000 by the late Chief Justice Julian Nganunu to join the Bench. I was persuaded by former President Festus Mogae to be his Attorney General in 2004 as, he said, it was my duty to do so to serve the nation. I returned to the Judiciary as soon as I could – in May 2006, when there was a vacancy on the High Court Bench.
Botswana’s civil society is one of the non-state actors that could save the country’s democracy from sliding into regression, a Germany based think tank has revealed. This is according to a discussion paper by researchers at the German Development Institute who analysed the effects of e-government usage on political attitudes In Botswana.
In the paper titled “E-government and democracy in Botswana: Observational and experimental evidence on the effects of e-government usage on political attitudes,” the researchers offer a strongly worded commentary on Botswana’s ‘flawed democracy.’ The authors noted that with Botswana’s Parliament structurally – and in practice – feeble, the potential for checks and balances on executive power rests with the judiciary.
Bangwato in Serowe — where Bamagwato Paramount Chief and former President Lt. Gen Ian Khama originates – disagree on whether they must send a delegation to dialogue with President Mokgweetsi Masisi’s family in Moshupa. Just last week, a meeting was called by the Regent of Bamagwato, Kgosi Sediegeng Kgamane, at Serowe Kgotla to, among others, update the tribe on the whereabouts of their Kgosi (Khama).
Further, his state of health was also discussed, with Kgamane telling the attendees that all is well with Khama. The main reason for the meeting was to deliberate on the escalating tension between Khama and Masisi — a three-year bloodletting going unabated.