FRANCISTOWN: Following its closure two years ago after the Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) declared it unhygienic and dangerous;the Francistown abattoir is on the verge of being outsourced.After its closure in 2011 the council has been seeking ways of resuscitating the facility. However, Northcast has learnt that there may be delays as there are divergent views on how this can be done.
Some councillors suggested that the abattoir should be renovated while others argued that since the facility needs P17 million to be renovated,it is best to build a completely new one.According to the DVS inspection,the abattoir was not complying with the Livestock and Meat Hygiene Act and in addition the building has some structural defects. It is for that reason that it was recommended that the building be decommissioned and demolished as soon as possible.This resulted in the deployment of employees to other departments in the Francistown Council.Northcast can safely reveal that due to the amount needed to renovate the old facility, last year the council resolved to build a new facility.
“We have a plot reserved in Area G in the city, but we are awaiting financial assistance from the Ministry of Local Government. We have already sent our delegation to ask for funds to build a new abattoir and as soon as we receive assistance,construction will begin immediately,”revealed former Francistown Mayor Ephraim Maiketso.However,last week Francistown Deputy Town Clerk Patricia Shongwa told Northcast that the council has now resolved to outsource the facility. Shongwa pointed out that the council already has names of bidders which are still before a tender committee. “We already have bidders who are awaiting the adjudication committee to award the tender,” she said.Although the Deputy Town Clerk was cagey about the details of the bidders some insiders revealed that around 15 bidders, which include
top local businesses, are contestingfor the tender.