Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Skills purge at BMC rings hollow with Board Chairman

Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) Board Chairman Victor Senye has put a blind eye at some reports about the acting chief executive officer (CEO) Dr Boitumelo Mogome’s leadership style regarding questionable appointments of some employees and the bullying of others.

Court records show that since her appointment as the acting CEO the BMC has parted ways with close to 10 key staff members with expertise sought out by the organization including four exco members being Dr Charles Esabu-Olupot, (Chief Technical Advisor) Ruth Makati, (Executive Manager Human Capital) Dimpho Mpulubusi (Financial Control) and Lula Letshola(Legal Counsel/Board Secretary).

This was after they first raised an issue about the appointment of the interim Chief Financial Officer,(CFO) Limited Nkani who they believe was appointed without following proper procedure.

“Dr Mogome disregards procedure as evidence by the appointment of interim CFO who was brought in by her office, no diligence in job interview and assessment, Human Capital function was not involved in hiring of this officer who was initially called a consultant and soon after interim officer. Contrary to rules of transparency, equity and fairness,’’ said a whistle blower.

Documents before courts show that acting CEO Dr Mogome–Maseko also used Union Chairperson one Mr Thebe to insult Ditsapelo Ruth Makati. The heated exchange of words between Dr Maseko and Makati were reported to the Board Chairman who never bothered to reply to Makati.

The damning allegations against the troubled BMC should have drawn an urgent attention because a WhatsApp communication between Brian Dioka and some key staff members at BMC says a lot about the inner workings at the parastatal.

In her founding affidavit deposed before court, Makati said she raised the issue about Mr Thebe’s utterances with the Board, copying Dr Mogome-Maseko but the Board led by Senye did not reply.

“On April 2019, there was a staff address called by the Acting CEO and the Union Chairperson Mr Thebe was assigned the role of giving a vote of thanks at this meeting. However, the platform to critique me calling me incompetent and dangerous to the Acting CEO and that I should leave the BMC role. Whilst he was saying this, the acting CEO was seated right next to him and she did not stop him. She instead laughed throughout the presentation and gave him a handshake when he finished the presentation,” Makati said.

The BMC was expected to take shape after government last year appointed a fully functional Board of Directors to provide oversight of the organization which is going through a privatization process.

Last year President Dr. Mokgweetsi Masisi said that government was committed to ensuring that payment delays and problems bedeviling the BMC are resolved. President Masisi said government was aware of the short comings at the BMC regarding payments to farmers, noting that the BMC and the Ministry of Agricultural Development and Food Security have been instructed to come up with well timed solutions.

The BMC spokesperson Brian Dioka could not engage on the issue as he said the matter is before the court of law.

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