PALAPYE: The minister of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) Slumber Tsogwane has decried the rising number of poverty eradication beneficiaries who have abandoned their programmes, thus putting a strain on the government.
Tsogwane was officiating at the ministry’s Open Day on Tuesday held at the new Palapye bus/taxi terminal and thronged by multitudes.
He noted that the situation could not be allowed to continue lest it undermines the good intentions of the government and negates or reverses the gains the country has made this far.
“I encourage all the beneficiaries to commit to their projects and guard against resource wastage. Think of many other Batswana who could use this opportunity, we owe it to this country to be more responsible, considerate and accountable,” he said.
Tsogwane further reminded the District Commissioners to enhance the supervision and monitoring of the programmes.
He emphasised that the government continues to invest heavily and so much in the various programmes aimed at improving the quality of lives of Batswana and building resilient communities.
He indicated that as the ministry they do recognise and appreciate the commitment of some beneficiaries who maximise these benefits. However, he noted that it was disheartening when in some instances such assistance is not taken seriously and therefore does not achieve intended outcomes.
The Open Day that was held under the theme ‘Innovation and teamwork for economic stimulation and sustainable services delivery’ has seen 16 districts coming under one roof to take their services to communities. The minister elaborated that it was an opportunity to address ministry institutions and other players under one roof.
He said that MLGRD has the challenge to continuously step up to the expectations and needs of its multifaceted clients and of late sophisticated customers, hence the open day’s provision for interaction with its different players and the core determinants of its success.
“The open day theme could not have been any better nor come at a more opportune time as it speaks to economic stimulation and sustainable delivery,” he said.
In addition, economic stimulation is at the centre of what government is currently advocating and is anchored on being innovative about the resources to respective MLGRD departments.
To realise this, the minister said they are also more than ever before, challenged to work as a team comprising of the public, private sector, civil society and other stakeholders of the economy.
Government alone cannot achieve this mammoth task, he said. “I challenge and urge all of you to commit to this noble resolve to help take Botswana to a different level.”
“To all districts, this has implications for amongst others, accelerating the backlog eradication, re-thinking our projects management and turnaround times,” Tsogwane said.
For his part, assistant minister in the Ministry of Education and Skills Development (MOESD), Moiseraele Goya, who is also a Member of Parliament (MP) for Palapye, expressed appreciation at Tsogwane’s efforts to hold the event in Palapye. He said that this goes to show that Palapye is starting to be recognised as one of the towns that are developing tremendously. “What is left now is for the minister to declare us a city and make us the third city of this country because it is evident from this bus terminal that we are moving forward befitting the status of a city, and I am hoping that what we have seen and heard today about MLGRD services will help us in further moving forward,” he said.