- Says forex reserves have been looted
- Decries lack of plan to save jobs
The vice president of the Botswana National Front (BNF), Reverend Prince Dibeela, has described presentation of the 2021 budget speech in Parliament this week as a fundraising event.
In an interview with The Botswana Gazette, Dibeela said the poor are going to suffer as a result of measures taken by the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) to try and resuscitate the economy.
“The poor are the ones who buy these cheap drinks and therefore the ones who are going to suffer as a result of the proposed sugar levy,” he said. “The poor are going to suffer because of mismanagement of public funds in the fuel levy fund and other public resources.”
Significantly, Dibeela said, the BDP has squandered Botswana’s foreign exchange reserves. “We are not being told how, where and why the money was used,” he asserted. “President Mokgweetsi Masisi and team are running the country in an unsustainable way.”
He said has he foresees “a revolt” coming because most Batswana are not happy with the way their country is being run. “Right now the Civil Aviation Authority of Botswana (CAAB) is paying people half salaries and some companies cannot retrench because of the ongoing State of Emergency (SOE),” he noted.
Similarly, the Leader of the Opposition, Dumelang Saleshando, says the budget speech does not talk to individuals. “The speech focused on macro businesses,” Saleshando, said. “There is no plan of how we are going to fight the COVID-19 virus, no plan on vaccines and there are no plans to save jobs.”
He accused finance minister Thapelo Matsheka of failing to give a report on state owned enterprises that are being funded by government. “There are over 60 state owned enterprises funded by the government and the minister in the last speech promised to give a report on these,” he said.
Saleshando, who is the MP for Maun West, asserted that President Mokgweetsi Masisi is launching a hostile situation that he said is the epitome of weak leadership.