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CELEBRATE BOTSWANA PEACE, STABILITY
27/09/18
CELEBRATE BOTSWANA PEACE, STABILITY Batswana have been urged to celebrate the peace and stability reigning in the country. Giving a keynote address at the Democratic Symposium in Gaborone on September 25, former Liberian president Professor Amos Sawyer said Botswana was a model of good governance in Africa therefore Batswana had much to celebrate. He said peace and stability were entrenched in the Botswana culture and society adding that the country had distinguished itself as a voice of truth.

CELEBRATE BOTSWANA PEACE, STABILITY

Batswana have been urged to celebrate the peace and stability reigning in the country.

Giving a keynote address at the Democratic Symposium in Gaborone on September 25, former Liberian president Professor Amos Sawyer said Botswana was a model of good governance in Africa therefore Batswana had much to celebrate.

He said peace and stability were entrenched in the Botswana culture and society adding that the country had distinguished itself as a voice of truth.

Professor Sawyer said Batswana should be excited because Botswana’s democracy was healthy and working effectively while its good governance credentials were recognised and commended worldwide.

“Empirical evidence of good governance in Botswana has been compiled and published by many highly respected governance performance monitors, including the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, the OECD, the African Union and the United Nations agencies,” he stated.

Professor Sawyer said Botswana already had an enviable record of electoral democracy and was ranked number two in Africa by the Mo Ibrahim Index.

He said the index also extolled Botswana’s impressive standing with respect to the rule of law, its record of accountability in governance and access to information.

He encouraged Botswana to continue on the pathway of deepening democratic values, renewing collective aspirations, strengthening democratic institutions and nurturing more enlightened and efficacious citizenry.

Regarding the symposium, Professor Sawyer said it provided opportunities for introspection and reflection on democracy and development and could be invaluable for arriving at mutual understandings among all political tendencies in the country.

He said such symposia held at appropriate periods could be helpful in strengthening and renewing common understandings and commitments.

Professor Sawyer said with 50 years of peace and stability already achieved, national cohesion was strong in Botswana and provided solid support for holding periodic multiparty dialogues and national symposia for building and strengthening national consensus on foundational issues and challenges.

On Botswana’s contribution to Africa and the global community, Professor Sawyer pointed out that the continetn was gratified that Botswana had already established a prominent place of leadership continentally and globally.

“The quality of Botswana’s leadership has been recognised in Africa and abroad. Botswana has been and remains a champion of regional economic and political integration, its role in SADC is only one clear manifestation,” he stated.

He said at regional and international levels, Botswana had been an outstanding practitioner of preventative diplomacy and conflict resolution in Africa, an important leader in addressing climate change challenges and a strong and courageous voice of human rights and the protection and promotion of democratic values in governance in the world.

Professor Sawyer said as the global order was undergoing change, Africans must be reminded that the only pathway to economic transformation and development was through regional economic and political integration and urged Botswana to take the lead in that regard.

He said he believed Botswana, with its 50-year experience in development planning, was in a good position to champion Agenda 2063 saying the country had what it takes to become a centre for preventive diplomacy, conflict resolution and the promotion of good governance in Africa.

The one-day symposium, which was officially opened byActing President Slumber Tsogwane, was held under the theme: “Democracy as a vehicle to a capable state”.

It was graced by former and current Members of Parliament. BOPA

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