Thursday, March 4, 2021

MPs prod Khama to explain power outages

Members of Parliament (MPs) have called on President Ian Khama to explain to the nation the current power crisis that has hit the country.

Some have even called for the resignation of Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources (MEWR), Kitso Mokaila, for misleading Khama.

Debating the budget proposals for the Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources (MEWR), for the 2014/2015 financial year, the MPs across the political divide were concerned that there is need for an explanation and solution to the current problem.
MP for Francistown South, Wynter Mmolotsi said last year Khama assured the nation at the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) congress that load shedding would be a thing of the past.

He said the president should have found it fit to update the nation on the current problem instead of hiding.
He said the current problem was beyond Minister Kitso Mokaila but needed the president.

“The nation is in the dark about the current problem. This problem is beyond you, we expect Khama to go public again and explain to us on the current crises.”

He said it was shameful to find Botswana in a situation in which she is where the whole country is in darkness.

“One wouldn’t expect that in this day and era and as a self governing country, we could be plagued by darkness.”

MP for Ngwaketse West, Mephato Reatile, said Mokaila’s ministry keeps on saying everything is well all the time.

He said Khama was even misled by being told everything is well. The MP said what Khama told the public was based on wrong information he got from Mokaila and his technocrats.

He said it was regrettable that no one can account on the power cuts that have hit the country.

“In serious countries, the minister could be resigning for misleading the country and the president.”

Reatile said all losses that the country has incurred were because of Mokaila’s ministry. He said it was surprising that a Chinese company that was penalised in South Africa because of poor workmanship was roped in to do work in Botswana.

“It is dark in the leadership. Batswana are angry. Botswana is crumbling and we cannot let the situation as it is. I must show that I am not part of those who are failing this country.”

Leader of Opposition, Dumelang Saleshando, said that Khama has assured the nation that all is well now instead of owning to the problems, he is busy going around serving people soup.

 He said that Mokaila has not seen the need to give prominence in explaining the power crisis that has hit the country.

Saleshando said what Botswana was currently going through was not load shedding but total switch off.

“Some businesses have been closed since Thursday last week. They have been asking me whether the situation will improve or not and I promised them that I will ┬ábe able to give them feedback on Tuesday after the minister briefs Parliament, but I am very disappointed out of what he said.”

Saleshando said what worries most is that there has never been prior warning and there is not even an explanation on whether the situation will improve.

However MP for Tati East, Guma Moyo, blamed all MPs for the power crisis. He said MPs must take collective responsibility and own up to the problem because they failed in their oversight responsibilities.

He said those who are condemning Mokaila are politicking and they want their voice to be heard.

“The truth of the matter is that, it is more expensive to have our own power supply than importing. I will never run away and not take responsibility; I am part of the problem.”

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