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Central District Chairperson tours region, presents roadmap

The Chairperson of the Central District Council (CDC) Mr Peter Williams has promised to work hard in his two year tenure to ensure that Boteti achieves the status of a township and is awarded developments the region has been longing for.

Speaking at a Kgotla meeting he addressed in Letlhakane recently, he said he had come to Letlhakane to hear residents’ grievances, exchange views as well as share his ambitions roadmap and developmental plans.

He said this was his first meeting with the residents since he assumed office as Chairperson of the vast and sparsely spread Central District.  “Our district is the biggest in Botswana and possibly in Africa with a lot of remote area dwellers, owing to that we are confronted with many challenges as such are I’m here to report to you and seek suggestions on how we can work together to take the region forward” he announced, to a fully packed Letlhakane Kgotla.

He said he is aware of the low levels of developments in Letlhakane and that the village has a sub-standard sewage system, lack of good gravel roads, unreliable water supply, salty and oftentimes unhygienic drinks water and no street lights. He assured the constituents that he had been consulting with relevant authorities to resolve those long standing grievances.

He promised that during his tenure he will lobby all those who wield influence and power to ensure that Letlhakane achieves the status of a township like Orapa and Sowa-Pan “It is about time that this village is converted into a Township that will have an autonomous structure as we see in Sowa-Pan. This is done only to ensure that developments can be delivered timely to residents, I have to admit that this village has lacked behind as compared to other mining zones” he said.

He implored the youth not to rest on their laurels and to fully utilize government programs and initiatives, saying the current government has the best interest of the youth at heart “I arrived here yesterday after addressing Kgotla meeting in Xere and Rakops and I want to tell the youth that one elderly woman complained that you are not fully utilizing the programs we have availed, another elderly lady in Xere even suggested that we should share some of the money allocated towards youth projects with the elderly, as they themselves are ready and willing to work hard to see projects to full fruition, while the youth are lacking behind” he said.

He promised that the CDC will fix internal roads and that the council had recently fixed its machines, he announced that therefore a number of roads in Letlhakane will benefited as they will be upgraded. He said he was committed to small business development in his district and owing to that the Central District Council had recently set up a task force to come up with strategies of improving small businesses as well as create employment for the youth.  

He urged the youth to work hard and preserve so that they can create employment for themselves. He also told the residents that he will be touring several select villages and all the seven Sub-districts in the central region to appraise them on developments and seek their views until there is a clear picture of his roadmap and developmental plans, he said this process will continue until the end of August.

He said poverty eradication programs, LIMID, ISPAD as well as the destitute and orphans programs in Boteti have been rolled out successfully and in his assessment were benefitting the intended beneficiaries and recipients. Saying more than 360 orphans enrolled together with over 1000 destitute persons in Letlhakane.

He said the CDC had been awarded over 652 million pula for developmental purpose and he stands ready to ensure that the money is used proficiently, to the enjoyment and enhancement of overall life for the inhabitants of the central district.

He called for delivery and efficient monitoring of government projects. He said CDC will continue to request for more funds from the central government to augment their meager resources needed to cater for the vast district. Boteti Sub-district chairperson said they also stand ready to support Mr Williams in his noble endeavor to better their district, he said all the concerns brought forward by the constituents will be considered at their next sitting.

He said the dilapidated Letlhakane hospital will be getting a facelift courtesy of Debswana mining company and that the hospital will also be revamped to add extra beds.  

For their part, residents of Letlhakane thanked the Chairperson for his visit and comprehensive presentation, the majority of those who spoke and asked questions supported the idea of Letlhakane being converted into an independent township and begged for more developments in the village.

One of the residents, Mr Michael Thanke asked that street lights be installed in the village with urgency as many people who had come to ply their trade in the mine have brought with them a lot of unsavory habits and crime, he said the police were inundated with cases of violent crime and theft.

He said Letlhakane can no longer afford to be dark when a lot of the mine employees work night shifts putting their lives in danger.  Residents also complained about slow delivery of the SHAA housing scheme, lackadaisical contribution to village development by the mines around the village as well as rampant youth unemployment which they said was a danger to peace and stability.  

The chairperson’s tour of the CDC and its constituent sub-districts has taken him to various villages in the central district which included, Xhomo, Sebina, Gweta, Nata, Masunga among others.  It will also see him traverse the length and breath of the district addressing residents to lay out his roadmap and seek for guidance during his term in office.

Mr Peter Williams ascended to the leadership of the  Central District Council eight month ago taking over from long time CDC chairperson Mr Lesego Raditanka whom he beat by 91 to 81 votes. The CDC has a total of 174 councilors, a few of them had accompanied Mr Williams on his journey, he promised to work diligently together with his team to ensure unhindered delivery of service to Boteti.

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Khan: Boko, Masisi are fake politicians

18th January 2021
Masisi & Boko

While there is no hard-and-fast rule in politics, former Molepolole North Member of Parliament, Mohamed Khan says populism acts in the body politic have forced him to quit active partisan politics. He brands this ancient ascription of politics as fake and says it lowers the moral compass of the society.

Khan who finally tasted political victory in the 2014 elections after numerous failed attempts, has decided to leave the ‘dirty game’, and on his way out he characteristically lashed at the current political leaders; including his own party president, Advocate Duma Boko. “I arrived at this decision because I have noticed that there are no genuine politics and politicians. The current leaders, Boko and President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi are fake politicians who are just practicing populist politics to feed their egos,” he said.

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Ookeditse rejects lobby for BPF top post

18th January 2021
LAWRENCE-OOKEDITSE

Former Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) parliamentary hopeful, Lawrence Ookeditse has rejected the idea of taking up a crucial role in the Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) Central Committee following his arrival in the party this week. According to sources close to development, BPF power brokers are coaxing Ookeditse to take up the secretary general position, left vacant by death of Roseline Panzirah-Matshome in November 2020.

Ookeditse’s arrival at BPF is projected to cause conflicts, as some believe they are being overlooked, in favour of a new arrival. The former ruling party strategist has however ruled out the possibility of serving in the party central committee as secretary general, and committed that he will turn down the overture if availed to him by party leadership.

Ookeditse, nevertheless, has indicated that if offered another opportunity to serve in a different capacity, he will gladly accept. “I still need to learn the party, how it functions and all its structures; I must be guided, but given any responsibility I will serve the party as long as it is not the SG position.”

“I joined the BPF with a clear conscious, to further advance my voice and the interests of the constituents of Nata/Gweta which I believe the BDP is no longer capable to execute.” Ookeditse speaks of abject poverty in his constituency and prevalent unemployment among the youth, issues he hopes his new home will prioritise.

He dismissed further allegations that he resigned from the BDP because he was not rewarded for his efforts towards the 2019 general elections. After losing in the BDP primaries in 2018, Ookeditse said, he was offered a job in government but declined to take the post due to his political ambitions. Ookeditse stated that he rejected the offer because, working for government clashed with his political journey.

He insists there are many activists who are more deserving than him; he could have chosen to take up the opportunity that was before him but his conscious for the entire populace’s wellbeing held him back. Ookeditse said there many people in the party who also contributed towards party success, asserting that he only left the BDP because he was concerned about the greater good of the majority not individualism purposes.

According to observers, Ookeditse has been enticed by the prospects of contesting Nata/Gweta constituency in the 2024 general election, following the party’s impressive performance in the last general elections. Nata/Gweta which is a traditional BDP stronghold saw its numbers shrinking to a margin of 1568. BDP represented by Polson Majaga garnered 4754, while BPF which had fielded Joe Linga received 3186 with UDC coming a distant with 1442 votes.

There are reports that Linga will pave way for Ookeditse to contest the constituency in 2024 and the latter is upbeat about the prospects of being elected to parliament. Despite Ookeditse dismissing reports that he is eying the secretary general position, insiders argue that the position will be availed to him nevertheless.

Alternative favourite for the position is Vuyo Notha who is the party Deputy Secretary General. Notha has since assumed duties of the secretariat office on the interim basis. BPF politburo is expected to meet on 25th of January 2020, where the vacancy will be filled.

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BDP cancels MPs retreat

18th January 2021
President Masisi

Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) big wigs have decided to cancel a retreat with the party legislators this weekend owing to increasing numbers of Covid-19 cases. The meeting was billed for this weekend at a place that was to be confirmed, however a communique from the party this past Tuesday reversed the highly anticipated meeting.

“We received a communication this week that the meeting will not go as planned because of rapid spread of Covid-19,” one member of the party Central Committee confirmed to this publication.
The gathering was to follow the first of its kind held late last year at party Treasurer Satar Dada’s place.

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