Monday, May 17, 2021

Mo Ibrahim downgrades Botswana governance credentials

The 2014 Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG) places Botswana among countries that have shown deterioration in governance over the past five years.

The results of the 2014 IIAG challenge perceptions about the state of African governance.

At the country level, the 2014 IIAG highlights the potential of governance underperformers while revealing the weaknesses of current frontrunners. Countries in the bottom half of the rankings register the largest improvements over the past five years. C├┤te d’Ivoire, Guinea, Niger and Zimbabwe have changed course since 2009 from negative trajectories to become the biggest improvers on the continent.

The progress is believed to have been driven in large part by gains in Participation& Human Rights. Meanwhile, historically strong performers, Mauritius, Cabo Verde, Botswana, South Africa and Seychelles, have shown some deterioration in governance at least in one category over the past five years. Board Member of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, Mary Robinson said, “With a growing electorate that has demonstrated a desire to be heard, and the results of the 2014 IIAG confirm that Participation & Human Rights is a crucial aspect of governance that governments cannot ignore.” The Safety & Rule of Law category also continues to expose concerning trends, with 12 countries showing their weakest performance since 2000, in 2013.

Having shown a deterioration of -1.5 between 2005 and 2009, this dimension of governance registers another negative trend in the last five-year period Opposition parties agreed with the latest Mo Ibrahim Index. Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) spokesperson and parliamentary candidate for Selibe Phikwe West Moeti Mohwasa said the 2014 IIAG results are not surprising, “in the current regime that’s exactly what you can expect. Even members of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) must think twice before they cast their vote.

Their vote must save this country,” he said. Botswana Congress Party (BCP) Secretary General and parliamentary candidate for Sefhare-Ramokgonami constituency Kesitegile Gobotswang said The Mo Ibrahim was spot on.

“Since the last five years Botswana government under Ian Khama has taken the country from being the shining example of democracy to a pariah state where corruption, money laundering and abuse of public office is official policy. Civil liberties are severely under threat as members of security agencies like DISS are running loose, causing havoc to innocent and harmless citizens,” he said. Gobotswang said state sponsored terrorism has become part of Botswana culture “Of late they have behaved like a criminal syndicate. State sponsored terrorism has become part of their culture. This is directed at the private media and the opposition. Political intolerance has reached unprecedented levels.

The Botswana state and Boko Haram are two sides of the same coin,” he said. Meanwhile the 2014 IIAG underscores the need to focus on building equitable and efficient institutions, such as health systems, accountability mechanisms and statistical offices. Without these, we will not be able to meet the challenges we face ÔÇô from strengthening the rule of law to managing shocks such as the Ebola virus,” concluded Hadeel Ibrahim, Founding Executive Director of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation.

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