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Ministry of Local Government (MLG)
DIALOGUE KEY IN COMMUNITY TRANSFORMATION
22/04/14
Following the first Botswana Performance Report, which captures progress and challenges on Vision 2016 pillars, the Vision Council started dialogues around the districts.

Following the first Botswana Performance Report, which captures progress and challenges on Vision 2016 pillars, the Vision Council started dialogues around the districts. This they say is done in an endeavor to involve district leadership and communities on how the identified challenges can be addressed in pursuit of attaining Vision goals.

Officiating at this week Smart partnership dialogue convened by North East District in collaboration with Vision 2016 Council, Hon. Minister Peter Siele said, "this forum is necessary where we meet as key stakeholders and identify challenges we face as a district and come up with remedial measures that are people centered solutions. With only two years left before the National blue print that seeks to propel the country’s social economic and political development into a competitive and prosperous nation, it is necessary to reflect and see what progress we have made as a nation.

The economic developments of districts would never be possible without full participation and or involvement of the citizenry. Thus Government, in particular my ministry has been in the forefront to develop rural communities to be prosperous and independent by 2016 and beyond. This is seen by programmes and projects such as the Rural development council, Social Protection and community development as testimony to the ministry’s commitment to uplifting peoples lives. The dialogue which premised under the theme "transformation to prosperity" is appropriate as we move towards 2016 and economic and social transformation of the people.

The Minister emphasized the role communities play in their development and the subsequently that of the country, hence its continuation in promoting bottom up planning in the development processes. Communities make proposals and submit for inclusions in the National plans and this way the needs of the districts are taken into consideration. But the minister urged them to devise or propose programmes/projects that will be able to address the challenges of the North East district. He said those projects must be in two kinds; the self-reliant ones and the government-assisted ones but they must all be community led.

The smart partnership concept which evolved in Malaysia is a concept premised on inclusiveness and prosper thy neighbor to produce smart outcomes, said Mr L Mothibatsela of CPTM. Mr Mothibatsela said there is need for ownership of vision 2016 and that can be made stronger by smart partnership philosophy. A mind set that appreciates that the National vision will not realize itself, all have a role to play. The objectives of the dialogue are to develop the North East district roadmap for implementing Vision 2016 goals.

The dialogue covered a wide range of topics which will give them chance to learn about natural resources and how they can be turned into economic opportunities by setting up business in the district. The minister said there is need to be creative and innovative with these resources to promote local economic development.

In closing, the Vision Council Deputy Chairperson, Mr Igbal Ebrahim said dialogue is key with communities if we are to realize the aspirations of vision 2016. "But we have come along way and have achieved some milestones as a nation. It time we pause and reflect because times have changed, the journey does not stop at the year 2016, let us look beyond that, he said…

By MOATLHODI RAMPOKA
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