The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth Sports and Culture Lewis Malikongwa has accused the Executive Committee of the Botswana National Youth Council of being ill advised.
In a letter addressed to BNYC Executive Director Benjamin Raletsatsi, Malikongwa states that “the BNYC Executive Committee was instructed to stop handling administrative issues for the secretariat. The decision for the Executive Committee to be hands on was ill advised.”
Last week the BNYC Executive Committee resolved to suspend its Executive Chairperson Benedice, Louis Sibanda. According to a release from the BNYC; as part of execution of its leadership role the executive committee resolved to conduct internal investigations into numerous reported allegations of maladministration within the BNYC operations.
According to Malikongwa, the letter “is a follow up to the currently ongoing restructuring of the BNYC in an attempt to achieve realignment to the Ministry of Youth Sports and Culture and refocusing its mandate.”
┬áHe said the restructuring has been happening over the last few months with a number of critical changes already implemented both at district and executive level.
“As already communicated during our consultative meetings with the BNYC Executive Committee and the District Youth Committee Chairpersons the level of changes at the BNYC continues to happen at three levels,” he said. Malikongwa said these are governance level are -the Executive Committee and District Youth Committees, Secretarial and District Level Operations and the BNYC Subsidiaries.
He said the Ministry has been implementing critical decisions as part of the rationalisation process that is aimed at enhancing service delivery. Hence the District Youth Committees have been instructed to work closely with the Ministry’s District Coordinators. “Likewise, the Ministry’s Coordinators have been instructed to take control of District Youth Committees and resuscitate them where there is need to facilitate youth programming. The Youth District Committees have now been tasked with the responsibility of mobilising youth in districts,” he said.
Furthermore, Malikongwa said, District Coordinators have been tasked to facilitate the opening of bank accounts for which the District Coordinators and their deputies are signatories. He said the Ministry is committed to servicing these accounts and these would be BNYC Districts Accounts.
Malikongwa says there have been major rationalisation changes at district level; the BNYC staff has been instructed to be accountable to the Minister’s District Coordinators at district level, Ministry’s District coordinators have also been instructed to take inventory of the BNYC assets and submit to the Ministry. This assignment, Malikongwa explained is in line with the process of maximising utilisation of assets such as office space for the effective and efficient service delivery at district level.
He said BNYC has requested to freeze all major events related to governance; election of District Youth Committees and convening Annual General Assembly pending the conclusion of the BNYC restructuring process.
However other events such as Month of Youth Against HIV/AIDS will continue. He also instructed Raletsatsi to inform those with contracts ending February 2015 not be renewed with exception of identified officers at BNYC Headquarters who are necessary for the organisations operations during the transition period. “You should immediately inform all those concerned about the intention not to renew their contracts within a reasonable timeframe and in accordance with the Employment Act,” said Malikongwa. However Parliament has since adopted a motion by Francistown West MP, Ignatius Moswaane which calls among other things reinstatement of the employees in question pending investigation into alleged maladministration at the organisation. Efforts to get comment from Malikongwa were unsuccessful as his mobile rang unanswered.