The private sector mouth piece, Business Botswana, has called on the minister responsible for Finance and Economic Development Kenneth Matambo to issue a public statement regarding the controversial National Petroleum Fund.
The Fund has been centre of attraction since mid December 2017 after a prominent businessman Bakang Seretse, together with two others, Kenneth Kerekang and Botho Leburu were arraigned before the court of law for issues relating to the financial management of the fund monies. The trio is expected back in court this month as they face charges related to money laundering.
Seretse’s companies have been involved in the management of the National Petroleum Fund while Kerekang, formerly a director at the Department of Energy in the Ministry of Minerals and Energy is currently an executive at the Botswana Energy Regulatory Authority. Leburu on the other hand works with Seretse in a clutch of investment companies owned by Seretse.
This week, Business Botswana issued a statement urging Matambo to make a statement which will reassure the nation that nothing has gone out of hand at the Fund.
Business Botswana also want Matambo to make it public, the government’s intentions of putting measures that will be effected to ensure that all levies are properly controlled and safe guarded.
“There is need to bring back public confidence and trust to show that systems are working as they should and there is nothing to worry about”, reads part of the Business Botswana statement.
On 5th January 2018, the government announced that it has since taken a decision to withdraw the fund monies and investment from banks and investment institutions.
In a short statement issued by the department of Energy, the government indicated that all proceeds into the National Petroleum Fund will be deposited into the Government Remittance account held at the Bank of Botswana.
“All commitment of the Fund shall be routed through the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development for payment through the Government Remittance account”, reads part of the Energy department statement.