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PAC raises concern about new driving schools regulations

TSAONE BASIMANEBOTLHE
Driving school
Public Accounts Committee (PAC) members have decried driving schools regulation saying tend to favour foreigners at the expense of locals.

As a measure to deal with the problem, they urged Transport Ministry to resolve the matter with locals in the industry.

The PAC also asked ministry to find ways in which locals involved in the running of driving schools can be assisted. Accounting officer, Alicia Mokone informed that the members that the new regulations have been put on hold pending discussions though they are used partly.

She explained that driving schools are still using old regulations.

Mokone said they have also encouraged driving schools to use sanitisers, record books, thermometer as well as to clean their cars in line with COVID-19 health protocols. The issue arose after the Member of Parliament for Francistown South constituency Wynter Mmolotsi asked whether the Ministry is aware that driving school owners who are currently Batswana are unhappy with new regulations and what action has the Ministry taken to deal with the issue?

“The reason why I am asking these questions is because ordinary Batswana who are currently running these businesses cannot operate them anymore under the new regulations.  We do not want a system where we find Batswana being denied to have these small businesses  in favour of foreigners. These businesses help some people to feed their families. I urge the two parties to discuss and solve the issue. I know people did not interpret target 20 000 probably, “ Mmolotsi said.

MP for Tonota, Pono Moatlhodi said it  was shocking for the Ministry to demand that a driving school owner should have a classroom and modern car amongst others.

“A ko nne re bua nnete.

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A lare Batswana ba ka tsaya kae dilo tse le di batlang kana go nale ba le ba senkang mo dikgwebong tse,” Moatlhodi asked. He said the old driving schools have not done badly and had produced best drivers.

He however asked Ministry to find ways in which it could help driving school owners if there are certain things that government is not happy about.

Responding to committee members, Mokone said the reason why the Ministry had put the new regulations on hold is for both parties to come with ideas of how they could assist each other. “We are not going to take these businesses from Batswana that is why we have not implemented the new regulations after hearing their cry. My Ministry and driving school owners are still discussing the issue and coming with new ones but I do not on how long it will take to finish new regulations,” she said.

On other issues, the accounting officer told PAC members that they had made proposal to government through Cabinet on issue of tall gates. “ I agree with the members that it is time tall gates are introduced and there could make money for the Ministry,” she said.

MP Paulson Majaga had wanted to know if the Ministry has not made any proposal to government regarding tall gates and what is the cause of delay. He said Parliament has long passed a motion on tall gates but nothing is done regarding the matter but Ministry of Transport keeps on complaining about lack of funds.



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