Tonota North legislator, Fidelis Molao, has dismissed as an attempt to score cheap political points, a motion tabled by Francistown MP Wynter Mmolotsi that this year’s examinations, which were marked by controversy, be investigated.
“Their motion is nothing but a fight for public opinion; it is intended to score cheap political points,” said Molao in his contribution to the debate on the motion, which is urging government to “institute a commission of enquiry on the 2010 schools final examination crisis”.
He stated that launching any investigation was premature as some of the examinations were still ongoing.
Molao accused Mmolotsi of being disingenuous.
“Why not wait for the minister to prepare a report?” he asked.
He accused the Teacher’s Union leadership of creating a crisis because they had failed to deliver what they had promised their members.
“They failed to stop the examination, failed to negotiate for better rates for the invigilation and marking and it is time for the teachers to introspect and asks themselves if this is the Union leadership they want. It shows desperation of the highest order,” said Molao, much to the delight and ululation of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP)’s MPs.
Molao said that the motion was just an attempt by the opposition Botswana Movement For Democracy (BMD) to popularise itself, adding that when BMD was formed it dominated headlines but it was now grappling.
The motion, he said, was just a populist exploit by the party.
“There is no interest on the child. People are looking at 2014,” he stated.
“We believe, and sincerely so, that there is no crisis and we cannot run this country through commissions,” he said.
Molao urged Mmolotsi to withdraw the motion and wait for the examinations to be completed.
Also against a commission of inquiry is the minister of Education and Skills Development, Pelonomi Venson Moitoi. She told parliament that her ministry was capable of conducting investigations on the issue.
“We will find out where the mischief is coming from,” she declared.
Venson-Moitoi said that teachers disserted students on the eve of the examination and thus living the ministry with no option but to solicit assistance from those willing to help with the invigilation.
She said that hence the ministry in some schools used support staff to invigilate.
“The plight of teachers is known to us and we are not proud of it…there is no need for a commission of inquiry…we have put trauma in the students purely for political reasons,” she said.
However, the Leader of the Opposition, Botsalo Ntuane, maintains that any investigation by the ministry would be a cover up as he has no faith in the ministry’s competence to investigate thoroughly because they (ministry) are also involved in the issue. Ntuane described this year’s examinations as a catastrophe.
“It’s a scandal. It’s a metaphor for what this country is going through; we are drifting towards the edge. If it does not require a commission, what in God’s name warrants a commission of inquiry,” he questioned.
He said that the results from a commission of inquiry will guard against a reoccurrence of the situation in future.