The government through the Deputy Permanent Secretary has been in a secret meeting with UNESCO with an attempt to take over the facilitation of “Radio Day” celebration which has to date been facilitated by Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA).
Despite that government is denying their plan to take over the facilitation of Radio Day celebration on Thursday this week.
UNESCO has revealed to The Telegraph that government through the Deputy Permanent Secretary, Kaboeamodimo Mogomotsi, has written to them demanding to take over the facilitation process from MISA Botswana.
It was after the appointment of the MISA that Kaboyamodimo wrote a letter to UNESCO demanding that they should take over the whole facilitation of the event .The government also indicated that they will not join other private radio stations in celebrating the day since they were going to celebrate it in Malwelwe village in Kweneng district.
MISA┬áhas also expressed their shock over the government move to take over after they were appointed by UNESCO to facilitate the event of the day. MISA, Director Buyani Zongwane expressed his disappointment over the move by government to take over the facilitation of the event.
“We were appointed by UNESCO and we were far in terms of the preparations where we engaged private radio stations, public broadcasters and other stakeholders, only to be surprised that they were informed that government was going to take over and they were going to celebrate the day in a remote settlement in Kweneng District,” said Zongwane.
He said that as the facilitator they agreed with other stakeholders that the celebrations will be held in Gaborone but only to learn that government was now taking over their responsibility.
Zongwane said government was bringing a “Big Bother Mentality,”┬áby excluding everyone else.┬á He said that they were informed that the budget proposal that they came up with which┬áwas estimated at P24 000┬á for the event was know being taken over by government.
However, Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of State President, Mogomotsi Kaboeamodimo stated in an interview that they invited other radio stations where they briefed them about the celebrations.
“We informed other stakeholders that we won’t be celebrating with them but we will be in Malwelwe. I can’t speak on behalf of UNESCO, you ask them. You are trying to look for controversy where there is no controversy,” said Kaboeamodimo.
However, UNESCO, Deputy Secretary General, Oteng Mokowe confirmed that indeed Kaboeamodimo wrote a letter to UNESCO demanding that the whole facilitation will be done by government.┬á
Mokowe said that initially they had appointed MISA as a facilitator of the event where they even came up with a budget for the celebrations that were to be held this week in Gaborone. He said that during the whole preparations they received a letter from┬áKaboeamodimo who stated that he got a directive demanding that the government will take over everything relating to the preparations.
Mokowe stated that while MISA was spearheading the whole process there was confusion surrounding the P24 000 that was funded through UNESCO Zimbabwe. He said that the budget was done by MISA in Botswana┬ábut was funded by UNESCO Zimbabwe.
He said all stakeholders are meeting on Tuesday this ┬áweek to discuss the issue surrounding the funding so that the funds can be divided since the government has intentions to hold the celebrations in Malwelwe while private radio stations want to hold the celebrations in Gaborone.