The newly elected mayor of the city of Gaborone, Haskins Nkayigwa, has promised Batswana that, during his tenure in office, he will strive to fight corruption, which he said is bedevilling the civic institution.
Nkayigwa took the mayoral seat after the ouster on Monday of Veronica Lesole, the former mayor from the ruling Botswana Democratic Party.
With opposition councillors grouping together against her, Lesole relinquished power as mayor, prompting a call for the election of a new mayor and a deputy mayor.
“During my tenure as the mayor, I promise the nation (that I will) fight corruption, which is currently bedevilling our communities and, in particular, the Gaborone City Council,” Nkayigwa declared on Tuesday, immediately after he was sworn in as mayor.
He said that he was guided, at all times, by the City Council values that incorporate trustworthiness, honesty and transparency.
Nkayigwa said that civic institutions across the country are flooded with reports of maladministration and blatant corruption that implicate employees and service providers in the corporate world, resulting in government losing millions of pula.
He said many such cases are before the courts whilst others are still under investigation.
Nkayigwa urged his colleagues to join him on the crusade against corruption, saying that nothing is impossible.
“We will not favour anyone. We shall ensure that there is transparency in order to uproot tendencies of corruption,” the new mayor, from the opposition Botswana Movement for Democracy, said.
Nkayigwa said this as he delivered his ‘thank you speech’ with his new deputy, Florence Shagwa, of the Botswana Congress Party, next to him.
He also took time to slam some of his colleagues whom he accused of lacking the trust and consistency, saying that it is morally wrong to make promises to people and then fail to live to the expectations.
“We should build trust with the people who voted for us,” he said, adding that the implementation of projects, which has been a sticking point in the City Council, will be his new team’s priority.
He promised to pay particular attention to storm waste drainage, prompt cabbage collection and street lights.