The total cost incurred by government in the Constitutional Review activities stands at P25.8 million, the minister of the Minister for State President Kabo Morwaeng has revealed.
In December 2021, President Mokgweetsi Masisi appointed a Commission of Inquiry into the Review of the Constitution which was made up of 19 Commissioners who were to be assisted by a secretariat of five members. In their quest to solicit views from Batswana, they hosted 132 countrywide Kgotla meetings that were attended by nearly 30,000 people over a four-month period. They also held hearings with different stakeholders. They finally submitted the report to Masisi in November last year.
Answering a question on Parliament this week, Morwaeng disclosed that sitting allowances cost P13.2 million, logistical support (accommodation, conferencing, meals) cost P12.4 million, maintenance of vehicles cost P93,830.00 while interpreters (Sign Language) cost P66,000.00.
Maun West legislator, Dumelang Saleshando had asked among others the total costs incurred by government in the Constitutional Review activities and the top five (5) items of expenditure and their respective amounts. The Presidential Commission of inquiry into the Review of the Constitution’s report was welcomed with mixed reviews most notably for their recommendations among others rejecting some Batswana’s submissions for direct election of the President.
The Commission was headed by former Chief Justice, Maruping Dibotelo with veteran trade unionist Johnson Motshwarakgole as vice-chairperson. The Commissioners represented diverse career backgrounds and demographics. They hold influential positions, qualifications and work experience amongst others: chiefs, journalists, natural resources specialists, geologists, lawyers, the clergy, business administration, education, governance, disability law and policy issues, legislative drafting and population studies.
Earlier this month, Masisi assured Batswana that a White Paper was expected to be presented to the ongoing winter Parliament session for subsequent action following the submissions of the recommendations for the enquiry on the Constitutional Review. “However, presenting the paper to the National Assembly does not mark the end of the consultations. I want to urge Batswana to be calm since divergent views are expected in a democratic setting”, Masisi said in a Kotla meeting at Sese village in July 6.