Former Members of Parliament have decided to form an association that will soon be recognized by the National Assembly.
The association’s main objective would be to improve the welfare of former MPs some of whom have fallen on hard times after their retirement.
The convener and former National Assembly Speaker Ray Molomo says as former legislatures they have decided to form Botswana Association of Former Members of Parliament.
He said they expect to register at least 70 members and the expectation is that they will be affiliated to the commonwealth parliamentary association.
Molomo said Commonwealth countries like New Zealand and Canada have long established such an Association.
He said former MPs convened at Notwane to discuss in detail the Association’s objectives and adopt a Constitution.
According to Molomo, former MPs have played a very essential roles, among others nation building, good governance, formulation of the country’s laws. He added that once they are no longer MPs they are ‘forgotten’ saying that is very unfortunate.
“We still have the energy to contribute towards the development of this country and we should also be recognized, which is very important. The Association will be joined by all former MPs who belonged to all political parties. It is should be clearly noted that this Association will not belong to any political party or issue any political statement,” he said.
Molomo further stated the Association would also air its own views on certain issues that affect the public in general.
Molomo said that there are some former MPs who have fallen on hard times.
“The Association will also look at the welfare of these people and this matter has to be discussed thoroughly and it should be understood that we are not cry babies,” he said.
Meanwhile some former MPs told this publication that they welcome the idea as it was long overdue.
They said as former MPs they should be recognized by the public even though they were no longer MPs.
“Most of those former MPs who belong to the opposition parties are very poor as compared to those who were from the ruling party,” they said.
They agreed that they still have the energy to contribute towards the development of the country and they can also be assigned to perform certain duties that are of national interest.