Members of Parliament for Molepolole South and North Dr Tlamelo Mmatli and Mohammed Khan respectively are reading malice in the suspensionof development projects earmarked for Molepolole village. The MPs vented out their frustrations this week in Parliament when they were debating the Declaration of Assets and Liabilities Bill, accusing government of being biased against Molepolole, a village with the highest population in Botswana.
Infuriated Molepolole MPs shot down the declaration of assets and liabilities bill saying it won’t curb corruption unless developments are equally distributed. Molepolole South MP Dr Mmatli expressed concern that some development projects that have been allocated for Molepolole in the past National Development Plans (NDPs) 10 and 11 were never delivered.
However, he said some of those drafted developments on Molepolole turn out to be a fallacy. He went on to express lack of confidence on the declaration of assets bill taking a jab to Ministers Nonofo Molefhi and Shaw Kgathi, to appraise him on pending Molepolole projects. He also said he wondered what criteria the government uses to transfer the construction of tarred roads in smaller villages, as developments are normally done according to population size of a given area.
Molepolole physical status, he argued, would ideally attract priority because the village is near the capital city Gaborone hence shortage of essential services such as water remains higher. “I have been observing that Molepolole has been intentionally snubbed or disadvantaged in terms of pioneering development projects. We are told on the start that the village has been allocated budget in the Economic Stimulus Package but no development has occurred from it,” infuriated Mmatli protested.
Moreover, he said the water project that has been earmarked for Molepolole has been transferred to Moshupa, therefore suspecting political mischievousness behind the halted developments. "There is no way we could not complain when villages like Thamaga, Moshupa have even their roads attended to before us because their population size is smaller. But Molepolole continues to be starved developments hence we make this complains time in and again when responding to budget speech, It is not fair at all,” he added.
Supporting Mmatli was his counterpart Molepolole North MP, Mohammad Khan who labeled the ruling BDP members as hypocrites noting that BDP held constituencies are ones developed. Khan has said that government disadvantages the opposition MPs by deliberately halting developments so as to make them being underrated by the constituents prior to elections. He said his all attempts to convince government in the past five years has been failed. "I feel so annoyed because this government is discriminative when it comes to undertaking developments. The constituency has been overlooked in developments and we condone this hypocrisy act by the BDP. We want national development to benefit us all equally,” Khan said.
Furthermore, Khan dismissed the declaration of assets and liabilities bill like other opposition members insisting that BDP brought the bill because it is just scared of losing the elections. He argues that it is not reasonable for people to be declaring their assets noting that the bill somehow infringes in the individual personal privacy which can be used for political gain by one’s political rival. In addition, he indicated that BDP shunned the bill before when it was proposed by MPs Joy Phumaphi of BDP and later on by BCP president Dumelang Saleshando before this time.
Minister of Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration, Nonofo Molefhi said it is not good to leave with misconception that developments are made based on political status. He said every constituency countrywide despite its political leadership at a time is rendered developments accordingly either from the NDP 11 or ESP budget without any disadvantage motive.