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Voices on the streets

Boitshwarelo Ntwakgolo PIC: PHATSIMO KAPENG
Mmegi photojournalist, PHATSIMO KAPENG, hit the streets this week to gauge people’s opinions on the state of the economy. Many are deeply depressed. He samples a few of the responses

Mpho Kebosietswe, 22 All I can say is that the situation is deteriorating further because there are no jobs and people are still losing their jobs. Government efforts are not visible in alleviating Batswana from this crisis.

If I remember correctly, during the 2019 elections government promised to create employment for Batswana but I am not seeing anything to suggest that being the case.

Government is using the pandemic as an excuse for not creating jobs for Batswana and I cannot say I am convinced that we have the pandemic in our country.

Both the government and the private sector should focus on creating employment for the youth.

Obed Manthe, 38Times are hard and this year we have not seen much profit in our businesses despite reporting to work daily. We are just working to have what little income we can get to support ourselves.

Government has no time for us and thus we are on our own in this time of crisis. We really hope that government could pay more attention to us and assist us with finances to keep our businesses afloat. One good example is when we came from the lockdown we could have been helped to jump-start our businesses after the long hiatus. Our customers have been affected by the pandemic as most of them have lost their jobs, which means they are unable to meet our fee agreements. The curfew has also affected us a lot because we have limited operating times.

Oteng Ramalekane, 29I am a

hustler by profession and before the pandemic, I was filling buses at the bus station. Everything came to a halt with the outbreak of COVID-19. I had come up with ideas on how to generate income. Since I do not have a good academic background, I was only later able to secure a stall through which I could then generate income for myself. I would like to recognise the efforts of the government to assist various sectors in this crisis though not all of us can receive help. Above everything, I think we should all try to work together to defeat the virus and go back to how things used to work before COVID-19 came along with the resumption of government policies and initiatives to better the lives of Batswana. The youth should also display efforts to better their lives so that when government intervenes there is a base to work with.

Boitshwarelo Ntwakgolo, 38 I have been operating a business since August 2016. The situation has gotten worse this year compared to last year despite the outbreak happening last year.

I have been unable to make any savings as I am not getting a lot of business, especially in this season as we are limited as to which goods we can sell unlike during the other seasons. There is no hope of things getting better due to the VAT increase which has led to an increase in prices of the goods we are selling.


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