Vice President Ponatshego Kedikilwe has commended the involvement of the Sikh community in various trading, commercial and manufacturing activities that have created jobs across the country.
Speaking at the opening of the extended premises of the Sikh temple and birth anniversary of the Sikh first Guru, Kedikilwe said the Sikh possess entrepreneurial skills and have been actively involved in technical enterprises in Botswana. He added that the building of the worship place originally in 1989 was in appreciation of the Botswana values of tolerance, good governance and commitment to peace.
“It is evident that the welcoming spirit of oneness has blossomed that is why today we are witnessing the official opening of the extended Temple,” said Kedikilwe.
He further pointed out that the development of church organizations in Botswana has historically been good. The Vice President also appealed to everyone to pay allegiance to Botswana’s respect to peace, political stability, respect for the rule of law and fundamental human rights as well as the constitutional tenets such as freedom of conscience, of worship and of association.
“We hope that the Sikh community will strengthen and continue the crusade to uphold Botswana’s constitutional provisions of religious tolerance,” he said.
He stated that Botswana cherishes the democratic processes of transparency, accountability and tolerance which all have solid foundations enshrined in the Botswana Constitution which provides for various freedoms. He said that government recognizes the critical role religious organizations are playing both material and spiritual support to many vulnerable groups.
“This answers the Vision 2016 pillar of being a compassionate and caring nation and this commitment builds towards a tolerant and upright nation,” said Kedikilwe.
He emphasized that the government sought the intervention of various religious leaders and traditional leadership to lead is a clear demonstration of the commitment to uphold a high moral societal fibre.
The Broadhurst Temple was extended at a cost of P3 million to accommodate 400 devotees, which is to be a significant improvement from the old building which had a capacity to accommodate 150 people.