Mmegi Blogs :: Well done Wilderness Safaris!
Banners
Banners
Banners
Banners
Last Updated
Friday 15 December 2017, 17:56 pm.
Banners
Well done Wilderness Safaris!

“Air Botswana sold to Wilderness Safaris” so screamed newspaper headlines and social media commentary. At first it appeared as if it was a joke and right at its introduction, I had dismissed any such suggestion as hogwash.
By Owen Nsala Wed 14 Jun 2017, 17:26 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Blogs :: Well done Wilderness Safaris!








In my mind, the newspapers had gone on overdrive and wanted to sell. Finally, it was confirmed and I had to accept the reality that it was indeed happening. Our airline had gone to Wilderness Safaris. As I was scratching my head in a fit of anger and dejection, Wilderness Safaris withdrew its expression of interest in the running and takeover of Air Botswana.

I must say as a prelude to this article that I have absolutely no problem with privatisation of Air Botswana. Better still, it would be a day worthy of celebration if the national airline can find its parents at home and not be auctioned to foreigners. It would be a celebratory day if one of our own was to have ownership of the airline and make sure that the money circulates within the economy.

That being said, I however had my slight discomfort with the rather secretive nature with which the airline was to be sold.

Newspapers were awash with reports that President President Ian Khama had arm-twisted Cabinet to endorse a sale to Wilderness Safaris to the exclusion of other bidders. It was a hard pill to swallow taking into account the onerous responsibility that we have entrusted in our Cabinet to put the interest of the country first and swear allegiance to the country and not an individual. Any suggestions of arm-twisting points to the direction of a coerced decision upon Cabinet members rather than a properly and soberly thought out decision supported by independent mindedness.

We are told that Khama is a shareholder within Wilderness Safaris. If that position holds as true, then it would have been wrong to allow him to sit in a body which would take a decision of who to sell to.

The extent of objectivity and conflict of interest cannot move without question. The President must not have participated in the tender process right from the time he realised that his company had a prime interest in the subject matter.

It paints him in bad light to the extent that the whole exercise was an egg on the face of corporate governance in its entirety.

I do not have a problem with Wilderness Safaris being awarded the right to run the national airline. I have problems with the manner in which the acquisition was painted and any suggestions that the President played a major role in the acquisition and before the retraction must concern all those

Banners

who care about this Republic, its assets and its future.

I have discomfort with any suggestion that a politician could use his political office to take over a national asset without due process and diligence being taken into account.

There has for the longest time been a clarion call for our legislators to bring into law the declaration of assets bill. The recent developments would no doubt raise the noise levels further to the extent that it has become evident that politicians can easily sell off this Republic in the protection of their personal interests to the exclusion and regrettable disregard of the public interest. It becomes a very weighty and difficult exercise to surrender our trust to legislators who are unable to question the evident conflict of interest, but rather seek to satiate the appetite of their master.

A lesson must be learnt from this botched sale. We must call for open and non-secretive tender and procurement laws to which the public can be the judge. We have realised that our Cabinet cannot be entrusted with the sole decision-making capacity as they are either meek or hell-bent on self-serving missions. It would not hurt to have an open and public bid to which those with the know-how can question at each step of the tendering process. To leave the dwindling assets of this Republic to a hungry few souls at Cabinet would be detrimental to the future generations of this Republic as they will find nothing to benefit them. It is therefore high time that such dealings are publicised and the contracts are made available for all to see, talk to, question and endorse.

Credit must also go to the media for the constant feedback on this transaction. The media as the fourth estate remains a necessary watchdog in our society and exposes acts of maladministration. It invariably puts pressure on those that seek to self satisfy to fully reconsider. Media reports sensitise the nation and to an extent it act as a reminder of one’s conscience where such appears to have vanished or extinguished by greed.

The decision to therefore retract the expression of interest must be given its worthy credit on the simple account that the sale itself raised serious issues of unguarded conflict of interest and therefore the fiduciary duties of Cabinet to its people were under attack. Our Cabinet demonstrated lack of spine and control over our assets.

Banners
Banners
Banners


Banners
Exchange Rates
FOREIGN EXCHANGE: Friday, 15 Dec 2017
FOREIGN / PULA
PULA / FOREIGN
1 USD = Pula   10.2881
1 GBP = Pula   13.8122
1 EUR = Pula   12.1212
1 YEN = Pula   0.0917
1 ZAR = Pula   0.7624
1 Pula = USD   0.0972
1 Pula = GBP   0.0724
1 Pula = EUR   0.0825
1 Pula = YEN   10.91
1 Pula = ZAR   1.3117
have a story? Send us a Tip
Banners
  • Previous
    Next
    Masa Centre
    ::: Sunday 17 Dec - Sunday 17 Dec :::
  • Previous
    Next
    Riverwalk
    ::: Sunday 17 Dec - Sunday 17 Dec :::
  • Previous
    Next
    Gamecity
    ::: Sunday 17 Dec - Sunday 17 Dec :::
Selefu
And that comrades is the BMD strategy. Any questions Media! Where the hell are they
Banners
Banners
istanbul escort