The UDC President, Duma Boko says he is skeptical of the Economic Stimulus Package (ESP) which was introduced by President Ian Khama at a BDP Special Congress held in Gaborone.
The programme which was welcomed with reservation by economists, aims to accelerate job creation, stimulate the economy and diversify the economy. “The ESP recently introduced by the President will undoubtedly overpass the ongoing NDP as the ruling party big fish and elites line up to benefit from the envisaged project. Today they say it’s P8b, the next day it’s P9b. Nobody really understands the amount to be drawn from the foreign reserves,” argued opposition Umbrella for Democratic Change President Duma Boko.
Speaking at a political rally Wednesday, Boko indicated that corruption was likely to soar on the introduction of the project in a country already plagued with impunity especially by the ruling party functionaries.
President Khama is expected to shed more light on the ESP project tomorrow (Monday) as he presents the State of Nation Address. While the ESP could be a noble and calculated exercise, some critics opine that ESP was introduced simply to ward off chances of UDC assuming state power come 2019 national elections.
Boko also called on the scrapping of the BMC due to persistent financial bail-outs. “Of late we pumped P400m into the embattled BMC to sustain its operations and services. New and old democracies such as Namibia and Angola respectively are far surpassing us in the beef industry market. Batswana needs its own meat processing plants to compete with BMC and to search for their own lucrative markets outside the country,” Boko argued.
The Gaborone Bonnington North MP called for the opening of the market to empower local farmers and create employment opportunities.