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Ministry suspends funding to Anne-Stine school

The Ministry of Health and Wellness has suspended its funding to Anne-Stine in Molepolole until the school board resolves issues surrounding the school's administration.

The Ministry together with other stakeholders such as the Ministry of Education made the announcement on Wednesday in Molepolole in a Kgotla meeting where the school board was in attendance.

Anne-Stine is a school for disabled children funded by government at a tune of P1.2 million every financial year. “It is true Ministry of Health informed us yesterday. The board will meet next week Tuesday to discuss the matter.

We will have to appoint with those officials so that we could respond to what they had told us as the board and we will involve even the tribe because the school belongs to them,” board chairperson, Julius Dibeela said.

Mmegi has learnt that the officials told the board to resolve the issues of maladministration, and that they could not fund the school, which does not have coordinator, deputy coordinator and no specialised teachers. This comes soon after the board fired the school head, who was also the coordinator.

The deputy head was fired last June. Some employees together with some residents of Molepolole once called for an internal audit to be conducted at the school.

The officials who were sent to deliver the bad news told the board and residents that government could only fund the school if funds could be accounted for and all listed things are met.

Mmegi has been informed that it might take the board two years or more to satisfy the government’s needs because the officials would come and make their observations before they are being funded.

The monitory and evaluation team that consisted of the then ministries of health and education and skills development undertook an audit, which exposed the rot in March 2015.

However, the school is still having its own problems since it has to pay for three people whose contracts were terminated last year.

They include coordinator, deputy coordinator

and physiotherapist. 

It will be forced to pay its 16 employees who had been working at the school for termination of employment.

Former school head, Pedro Ramosanta had dispute with his board after he accused some embers for interfering with school business.  In a letter dated March 28 to Ramosanta, the board wrote, “Following the disciplinary proceedings against you, which were conducted on March 14 2018, the board of Sekolo Sa Anne-Stine also informed by the disciplinary findings has resolved that your relationship with the board has irredeemably broken down.

“The board has decided to terminate your employment with immediate effect.

You will be entitled to one month salary in the line of notice plus days of leave that as shall be determined by the board.

You are therefore requested to surrender all equipment of the school with immediate effect and also advised not to conduct yourself as an employee of Sekolo Sa Anne-Stine”.

Ramosanta confirmed the expulsion. “It is true I am fired by the board because I was questioning some of the maladministration things done by some board members.” 

Last year, an inter ministerial audit at Anne-Stine school uncovered a startling business operation wherein the former board had opened a micro lending scheme with interest set at 20%.

This forced the district commissioner and some village leaders to appoint a new board.

 “To this end a total P187, 752 has been withdrawn from the centre accounts,” reads a document from the Ministry of Health.

The board responsible for this mess was voted out in 2015 after serving for two years.

The audit shows that the arrangement contravened provisions of financial institutions and procedures of Botswana Government, memorandum of understanding between Sekolo sa Anne-Stine and Ministry of Health and Wellness, the policy guidelines for financial support to non-governmental organisation and the 1994 constitution of Sekolo sa Anne-Stine.




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