Masunga — Most perpetrators of the 32 defilement incidents reported in the North East District since the beginning of the are close family members, says the district's council chairperson Ms Florah Mpetsane.
The statistics showed that the home environment was unsafe for the girl child, she told a full council session in Masunga on Monday.
Ms Mpetsane said the district was experiencing a worrisome trend of high number of defilement cases saying out of the 32 registered since January to date, five had been withdrawn due to lack of evidence while only two perpetrators had been convicted.
She expressed the hope that the COVID-19 pandemic would eventually die paving the way for vigorous campaigns against atrocities facing children in the district.
On the pandemic, she stated that it had affected the world's economy noting however that the financial difficulties challenged entities to come up with strategies that would improve revenue base.
Ms Mpetsane said the time had come for the district to form a company that would be its investment arm.
The Local Economic Development Strategy was one initiative that could assist in expanding the revenue base, she said.
She noted that the five-year strategy was approved by full council in July, with 14 projects earmarked for completion during the financial year.
The chairperson informed the council that although 2019/20 had been declared a non-drought year, areas that did not receive adequate rainfall including North East District, were proclaimed drought stricken.
On a positive note, she said, Department of Meteorological Services reports predicted that Botswana would receive good rains this year.
Ms Mpetsane stressed the need for farmers to make good use of the forecast rains and plough.
The chairperson highlighted that the district was still facing challenges with commencement of major road networks including Tshesebe-Masunga Road upgrading to bitumen standard and Francistown-Matsiloje Road resealing.
She said the Ramokgwebana- Mulambakwena resealing project was at three per cent progress having commenced in May.
Ms Mpetsane said to address the water supply situation in the district, four boreholes were currently being electrified to increase distribution to Moroka, Siviya, Butale and Vukwi.
However, she said payment of bills remained a challenge in the district with the debt standing at P10.8 million over 70 per cent owed by domestic customers.
Councilor Mpetsane implored councillors to sensitize their communities to utilise self-service platforms to make payments and update their accounts to avoid arrears.
Source : BOPA