Thursday, February 9, 2023

GCC forming company to exploit city’s economic potential

Councilors and officials forming up the Gaborone City Council (GCC) Revenue Generation Committee, are now in a registration process of a Holdings Company, as an instrument to unlock the economic potential borne of the capital city council body’s assets and properties.

This was said by the Chairman of the Revenue Generation Committee, Rupert Hambira, when addressing a Special Full Council Meeting on Monday at the Council Chamber.

Hambira said that it will take less than three months for the capital city council to have its own business entity.

“This company was formed to reduce the financial burden of government and the capital city council’s reliance on government subventions,” said Hambira.

He added that after a benchmarking tour at the neighbouring Kgatleng District Council’s Kgatleng District Development Committee last month, the GCC Revenue Generation Committee has seen that there is a dire need of a vehicle to handle issues of economic potential of the council.

He said the Committee has also seen the need for formulation and documentation of the areas of various economic potential and plan of activities.

Hambira said even though they are benchmarking with Kgatlemg District Development Committee, it shows that their Kgatleng district counterpart is ‘not there yet,’ so there is need for them to benchmark in councils or municipalities who are already engaged in the privatization process. Hambira cited South Africa’s Gauteng and Limpopo Provinces as suitable benchmarking candidates.

On his recommendations, Hambira asked the Committee management to form a well structured organization with a Company CEO. Hambira further appealed to the Committee to organize a benchmarking tour to South African Provinces of Limpopo and Gauteng. He said their Kgatleng counterparts should be invited to address the June full council session, which he said has long been agreed by Committee.

Proposed names for the company, which is believed will be running by August, were Kgetsi ya Tsie Holdings, Civic Centre Holdings and GCC Holdings. The plan and the names proposed were welcomed by all the councilors.

On a separate issue brought before the GCC, Chief public Relations Officer for Gaborone City Council, Desmond Tshotelo, said the city council has signed a partnership agreement with the Swedish City of Vasteras regarding the issue of waste management. Under the partnership, the Swedish City, which is regarded as one of the cleanest in Sweden, will help the GCC to design a waste transfer station and recycling centre.

Tshotelo said they agreed on two issues: design of a transfer station in Gaborone and the piloting of a recycling initiative (GTARS). He said the transfer station will alleviate some of the acute problems for GCC, such as enabling garbage trucks to be used exclusively in the City instead of carrying waste to Gamodubu. Tshotelo said gradually the function of a GTARS should become less of a transfer station and more of a centre for recycling activities and other environmental activities.
“Dominating activities will be manual separation of mixed waste before they become new products locally or exported,” said Tshotelo.

He explained that it has been the mandate of the GCC that the landfill in Gamodubu is a bit far (35 km From Gaborone and is 70 km double trip).

“That means there are increased costs of maintenance, petrol and that results in frequent break down of GCC vehicles,” said Tshotelo. “It means when the vehicles are damaged we fail to collect the waste and people would complain. It also turns out for us to look for an alternative at the earliest.”

He explained that when Gamodubu landfill was constructed, there should have been the half way transfer station where the waste would be separated for recycling. Tshotelo said if these projects become successful they shall have increased productivity to deal with the waste. He said waste such as bottles, plastic, metals and cans will be easily collected before the remaining garbage (not useful) could be taken to Gamodubu landfill for final disposal.

Tshotelo further said the Swedish have requested 2. 3 million pula from SIDA, the Swedish International Agency, on behalf of the GCC.

“The money will be used for feasibility study and the design of the station,” he added.

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