Parly Rejects Motion To Disband Task Force

Saved by the bell: Parliament rejected calls to disband the Dr Kereng Masupu led Task Force PIC. THALEFANG CHARLES
Saved by the bell: Parliament rejected calls to disband the Dr Kereng Masupu led Task Force PIC. THALEFANG CHARLES

Parliament on Friday rejected an urgent motion tabled by Ghanzi South Member of Parliament, Motsamai Motsamai seeking to disband the COVID-19 Presidential Task Force.

Motsamai had proposed that funds allocated to the task force should be used to procure other necessities like oxygen, which the country needs to fight the spread of COVID-19. Motsamai had wanted the transfer of the Task Force's responsibility to the Ministry of Health and Wellness. “The mandate done by the Task Force should be taken to the Ministry of Health to avoid the confusion that is already there. It is clear that there are two centres of power because the Task Force wants to lead the fight against COVID-19, whereas it is failing. If the Ministry of Health (and Wellness) could be the one leading us, Batswana could be vaccinated by now and Batswana wouldn’t be burying their loved ones in numbers. The funds can also be used to employ nurses so that the issue of overworking nurses could be addressed,” Motsamai said.
He added nurses in rural areas do not have protective clothing. When responding to the motion, Vice President Slumber Tsogwane said people are jealous of the Task Force, which is doing a good job. “Mo gongwe moo, ke lehuha le ditshele hela mo go ba bangwe. Batho ba, ke bana ba Batswana. Ga gona urgency ya sepe. Bangwe kana ba bone tshono ya go polotika ka bolwetse jo (This is just pure jealousy and petty talk against the Task Force. They are Batswana. There is nothing urgent (about the motion). Some have seen an opportunity to politicise the pandemic),” Tsogwane said.

He said there are no two centres of power since the Task Force is always advising the Ministry of Health on what could be done regarding COVID-19. Last week, the Botswana Nurses Union (BONU) also called for a Task Force to be disbanded. The nurses union said the Task Force was failing and that is why it failed to secure the COVID-19 vaccine and to buy protective clothing for both nurses and doctors well on time. On the issue of travel permits, the Minister of Health and Wellness Edwin Dikoloti said they have opened only 30,000 permits, which will be shared by all regions.
Editor's Comment
A Call For Government To Save Jobs

The minister further shared that from the 320 businesses that notified the Commissioner of Labour about their plans to retrench, 20 were acceded to, which resulted in 204 workers being retrenched during April 2020 and July 2021.The retrenchments were carried out while the SoE was in place, meaning the companies that succeeded must have had solid reasons, despite the strict SOE regulations imposed on businesses to not retrench. We are left with...

Have a Story? Send Us a tip
arrow up