There is need to set parameters for the construction industry so that opportunities can be provided for all to participate, Minister for Infrastructure Science and Technology Nonofo Molefhi has said.
Receiving the Construction Industry Authority Botswana (CIAB) Layman’s Draft Bill, Molefhi promised that as they re-organise the construction industry they want to correct what is happening to small-time construction companies. He observed that those with muscle exploit small construction companies, pay them their dues very late and at low rates. “People are saying that in the absence of regulation they may not succeed in participating from the opportunities offered by the Economic Stimulus Programme.
If this bill redirects the industry we would be happy to use it to make sure that the industry is orderly arranged for all,” explained Molefhi. MIST Permanent Secretary Dikagiso Mokotedi who was instrumental in the formulation of the draft said they have been working with the industry to prepare for a final layman’s bill. “It has taken us three years working hand in hand with the industry to help them come up with this layman’s draft. So we are pleased to see them hand it to the Minister today. It will transform the industry and steer it into the right direction,” said Mokotedi.
The PS described the bill as a game changer, as it will force industry players with no knowledge to conform to legal requirements thereby protecting the public. PPC Cement Botswana General Manager Werner De Beer pointed out that the company was committed to improving the construction sector. He said the industry has taken a lot of flak as some major projects were previously not delivered on time and in accordance with specification.
De Beer said they will continue to support the industry as they previously did with initiatives such as the Number 1 Builders competition and the Construction Summit.
The layman’s draft will be formulated into a bill which will then be taken to parliament for debate. The objective of CIAB bill will be to implement an integrated strategy for the reconstruction, growth and development of the construction industry in Botswana.