• Mayor says this will curb crime
• To be installed in all major roads
• Security and Defence Expo welcomed
The first Security and Defence Expo ended yesterday (Saturday) in Gaborone where matters of security ranging from personal to cyber security were discussed.
The event – organised by Bonvic Holdings – was held under the theme “Human Skills, Technology and The Future”. When officially opening the three-day event, Chief Inspector and Licensing Officer in the Ministry of Defence, Justice and Security, Ross Sanoto, said matters of defence, safety and security are central to democratic governance and economic growth. “It is always our key desire to tap on initiatives that may add value to enhancing the security of our nationals and that of their property,” said Sanoto, adding that a stable Botswana is a product of joint efforts by government institutions and private partners working together for a common purpose.
To augment government security and defence structures, Sanoto said, government has passed the Control of Security Guard Services Act, which provides for the licensing of private security companies, their codes of conduct and their compliance to the Act, as well as other Botswana Laws. Parliament passed the Private Security Act in 2015, the object of which was to expand the scope of security services to include cash in transit services, Electronic Security Services, Close Security Services (VIP protection), Specialist Security Services, Private Investigator Services and Security Advisory Services. Sanoto said there is a striking correlation between economic growth and the need to protect such wealth. “Private security is expected to grow in leaps while at the same time providing the much needed employment to Batswana,” said Sanoto.
According to Sanoto, Botswana remains one of the safest places in the world attracting the much needed Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and has become an enviable tourist centre because of the cordial relations Botswana enjoys at bilateral and multilateral level with neighbours on matters relating to defence and security. Sanoto said the theme for this year is relevant and speaks directly to all stakeholders in the area of defence and security. “We need to keep abreast with the latest technology advancements if indeed we are to remain relevant in the defence and security of our nation,” he said.
The Managing Director of Bonvic Holdings, Victor Leshomo, said this year’s conference marked the beginning of many to come. He said the theme for this year highlights the importance that is placed on economic and social development and the important role of technology as the engine of economic growth and of youth as powerful force for change in the country. Leshomo said the expo was an opportunity for security and defence industry members to network and help further a greater understanding of the challenges and opportunities for achieving sustainable growth and economic empowerment for both private and government sectors.
Gaborone Mayor Kagiso Thutlwe said plans are at an advanced stage to introduce the concept of Smart City. This will see surveillance being installed along major roads to monitor the city 24/7 which is expected to curb criminal activities in the city where many people have lost their properties and lives. Thutlwe said people are no longer safe in the city, and therefore efforts such as the introduction of surveillance cameras are a welcome development, even though the city council is struggling with issues of budgets. As people migrate to Gaborone in large numbers due to falling economies of other major towns across the country, Thutlwe said as the population increase crime will always increase, saying the expo was an initiative that was most welcome.