Ill treatment suffered by Francistown West MP Ignatius Moswaane from the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the national assembly has devastated him and left him feeling abused and oppressed by the system.
Moswaane made the reveleation last Friday after his attempt to stop the termination of employment of about 35 Botswana National Youth Council (BNYC) employees was thwarted by deputy speaker Kagiso Molatlhegi. The latter refused the motion entry into parliament.
This led the outspoken legislator to immediately shun parliamentary proceedings saying the incident has severely devastated him and triggered a diabetic attack and hence he could no longer participate in the parliamentary business of the day. Though Molatlhegi had thought business could continue after apologising to Moswaane, things took a nasty turn and the house was forced to adjourn hardly an hour after starting when it emerged that more than half of the motions for the day were tabled by Moswaane. "I will not allow myself to be abused and oppressed by the system. Because of how I have been badly treated I am deeply frustrated and emotionally touched that I might even collapse," he said.
Other members whose motions were supposed to be debated also deferred their motions to a later date. Though the deputy speaker explained that Moswaane’s motion was not included in the business of the day because it was only forwarded to him late on Thursday, Moswaane rebutted this, saying for an urgent motion that the speaker’s office was long notified about on the 18th of February it was strange that the deputy speaker would claim to have seen it that late. He slammed the administrative staff of parliament and the speaker and her deputy for neglecting matters of national interest. “This is an urgent matter that should have been accorded a befitting treatment. I suspect that maybe your office has been infiltrated and that is why the matter has been blocked,” he said.
Despite efforts by opposition MPs who defended Moswaane’s right to table the matter if indeed it was of national interest, the deputy speaker stood his ground and blocked the motion from being debated. Some opposition members boycotted the sitting to show support for Moswaane. Meanwhile the defiant Francistown West MP says he will fight on, and re- table the matter so that it can be attended to on Friday this week.
Speaking to The Patriot on Sunday after the house was adjourned Moswaane expressed disappointment and displeasure at the kind of treatment he was given by the deputy speaker and the lack of support from his fellow democrats. He said although it might be a little late he still believes parliament could intervene.
Moswaane had wanted parliament to institute investigations at the BNYC over allegations of maladministration and halt the decision to terminate employment contracts of some employees. According to recent media reports , minutes of a meeting held late last year, shows that the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture Lewis Malikongwa instructed that at least 35 employees of BNYC be issued with contract termination as at the 28th of February. “Today was their last day as employees of the BNYC, that is why I wanted the matter to be dealt with urgently,” said Moswaane.