A number of youth who were supposed to have been funded under the Youth Development Fund (YDF) in Maun have been left in limbo following the decision to stop the implementation of all approved projects and suspend new applications until further extensive investigation have been carried out. The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Culture, Kago Ramokate announced the development at the North West District Council meeting on Tuesday. He said his ministry conducted an investigation in Maun Administrative Authority (MAA) from 11 to 18 April this year regarding the appraisals and adjudication of Youth Development Fund (YDF) proposals. Preliminary reports of the investigation indicate that there have been some anomalies that need a more detailed assessment, he said.
Ramokate said a total of 70 applicants were approved and were supposed to be funded in the financial year at P5 million. He, however, indicated that the total cost of the 70 applicants has exceeded to P17m, which the ministry cannot afford this financial year. He said the investigation will establish how the budget reached to P17m instead of P5m. Ramokate said his ministry is running against the time to conclude with investigations so that they can start to fund approved projects soon. Meanwhile, majority of councillor were not satisfied with Ramokate’s remarks and requested that minister Thapelo Olopeng to intervene urgently because the situation has affected the majority of youth in Maun.
Boyei councillor Ntlogelang Kebonyekgotla said the matter has long been over due and needed the minister’s intervention. Nonny Wright who runs a dairy farm near Maun at Hainaveld farms said her business has been badly affected by the development. “I didn’t take a loan from the banks because I knew that under YDF I will be funded but we have long been approved in February and told to open a bank account. Now we are being told that we must wait when they are still doing some investigations,” hit out Wright, adding that they don’t know what is being investigated and who is being investigated.