FRANCISTOWN – When it comes to sharing of the national cake, some local authorities are more equal than the others, so says the Francistown City civic leaders.
The councilors, who were discussing 2018/19 national budget which is currently being debated at Parliament, could not hide their disappointment regarding the Francistown city’s share of the budget.
First to express his displeasure was the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) Special Elected councilor Peter Ngoma. He said it is time that they start questioning and seeking answers as to how the budget is allocated in other councils across the country.
“I think that we are sleeping on the job in Francistown. It is high time that we question how a city as big as Francistown is allocated as little as P200 million from the budget whereas we have other councils getting as much as P400 million. It is also high time that we get the answers as to what criteria is used when a council as small as Masunga can get P400 million and we get this little. Maybe we should re-evaluate how we budget and what we are missing,” he said.
Ngoma was seconded by Botswana Congress Party councilor Ephraim Maiketso who argued that the budget allocated to the city of Francistown is not enough to satisfy its developmental needs.
“Out of the P6.82 billion budget allocated to the MLGRD, Francistown as the second city should not be getting a meager P223 million when other councils such as Masunga are getting more. Isn’t Francistown in more developmental needs than Bobonong?” he said. Maiketso also said the budgets that are proposed are budgets they as councilors have not really proposed.
Echoing the same sentiments, councilor BDP councilor Godfrey Kaelo of Monarch west said they accept the adjusted budget but they must question why other councils in the country get a bigger portion of the budget than they do. He argued that the money given to the city is not enough to meet its development needs.