Early in the week, Vice President Mokgweetsi Masisi told the media that Botswana Government is overly concerned by the high levels of unemployment.
He said in the next few weeks Government will be making big announcements on plans of employment creation.
We note that Vice President Masisi is the one assigned by cabinet to spearhead efforts of employment creation.
Given the pressing nature of unemployment levels in this country, it is our view that Masisi ÔÇô even without his position as Vice President occupies a unique role to shape the economy of this country.
Unemployment in Botswana has reached unmanageable levels.
We agree with those who say the levels are not only untenable, but also a security threat.
The Vice president also talked about the contentious issues surrounding Botswana’s Immigration Policy.
In passing he said Government is aware of concerns by the private sector.
He said Government is doing all in its power to address concerns by the private sector.
We are not aware of any country the size of Botswana in the world that has been able to develop without concerted efforts to attract outsiders.
We have to look outside for assistance.
That includes programming our companies to produce for exports because our domestic market is too small.
We are also hampered by the fact that a lot of skills needed by our economy to go to a next level do not exists locally.
But such skills are readily available in the world market. But it is our misguided Immigration Policy that is stopping the country from accessing those.
Masisi has made it clear that there are technical issues besetting the Ministry of Home Affairs which is the custodian of the country’s Immigration Policy.
We want to make it clear that for as long immigration of people with skills is curtailed at the rate it is today, the impending announcements to create employment by Government will come to naught.
Additionally, it is important to emphasise what we have always said that employment creation anywhere in the world is the responsibility of the private sector.
Governments only provide the groundwork by ensuring that policies are conducive for entrepreneurship.
It is also important to start looking at overhauling our Education System.
It is not enough to say that Botswana Government has over the years spent 23% of GDP on education when there is not much to show for it.
The quality of our education should be enhanced.
We have been training for disciples that are not needed by our economy.
That has to change. And time is not on our side.
Private universities, especially have to be forced to invest on infrastructure that supports learning like libraries, laboratories, computers and also quality researchers and lecturers.