FRANCISTOWN: Some food items that were supposed to be distributed to members of the public during the lockdown for the second time are rotting at Aerodrome Primary School where they are kept. Some Good Samaritans and companies had donated some of the relief packages while government purchased most of them.
The packages also include non-food items like sanitary pads and soaps amongst others. The relief packages were supposed to be given to members of the public who were hamstrung by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to fend for themselves due to the lockdown restrictions that were imposed by President Mokgweetsi Masisi as a measure to control the spread of the virus.
However, the government later somersaulted on its initial promise of providing the COVID-19 relief packages to the public over the three months following the relaxation of lockdown regulations, which allowed those who were in lockdown to be involved in economic activities.
The government provided the relief packages only for a month, a decision that drew the ire of Batswana across the country.
According to reliable sources privy to information on the relief packages, they may be worth hundreds of thousands of pula.“Some of the items included perishables like eggs, which were donated by members of the public and
The issue of the food relief packages also cropped up recently when the Member of Parliament for Francistown West, Ignatius Moswaane defected from the Botswana Democratic Party.
Moswaane has said some of the relief packages meant for distribution to eligible members of the public are rotting at Aerodrome Primary School, where they are kept and have never been given to the public as the government has earlier on assured the nation.
Moswaane also stated that the Francistown situation is also obtaining in some areas in the Southern part of the country.
Contacted for comment about the issue, city clerk Lopang Pule said the relief packages would be given to marginalised members of society.
However, Pule said he was constrained to give the value of the food because he did not readily have figures with him when The Monitor contacted him on Friday.