There were moments of seriousness and easy humour this week in the House Chiefs as the Minister of Trade, Neo Moroka, briefed Dikgosi on government’s now stalled liquor trading restrictions.
Other Dikgosi felt government deliberately wanted to harm the poor and benefit the rich because the restrictions target the low end of the liquor consumption market, while leaving out the posh hotels.
Yet others felt reducing the hours would help the national population as there will now be ample time for sex.
In what is perhaps a true reflection of the divisions among the ordinary men and women, the House of Chiefs is deeply divided over the government’s mooted liquor trading regulations.
Briefing the house about the regulations this week, the Minister of Trade and Industry, Neo Moroka had to contend with mixed reaction reactions from the House.
Chairperson of the House of Chiefs, Kgosi Seepapitso, of Bangwaketsi, said the government was corrupt as it did not follow the established channels of consultation.
Seepapitso said the ministry of Trade and Industry should have consulted the stake-holders before implementing the regulation(s).
He asserted that the briefing was not at all about draft as the said regulation was nearly effected in April this year.
“The regulation(s) is meant for the poor. Why are lodges and hotels excluded? Is it because the ministers have some shares in them?” asked Seepapitso
Kgosi Lotlamoreng shared the boat view Seepapitso and said the regulation was discriminatory in that it left out the lodges and parliamentary bars.
“Indeed something is wrong. Ministers have some shares in these hotels,” concluded Lotlamoreng
For their part, Kgosi Chika of Chobe and Mosadi Seboko of Balete lamented the fact that regulations will see most Batswana losing their jobs.
They pleaded that hours be left unchanged.
Kgosi Sediegeng Kgamane of Bangwato and Kgosi Dema wanted the regulation piloted on a smaller scale.
Kgamane said for most of the meetings he attended with the crime prevention committee in Serowe, alcohol was identified as the major root of the social ills.
Kgosi Kalaben and Kgosi Mothibe Linchwe of Bakgatla also favoured the regulation with the latter saying “may be the population will increase as the people will retire to bed early and make children.”