Records are an important and a powerful tool in attaining good governance therefore should be taken into consideration all the time. Assistant Minister of Youth Empowerment, Sports and Culture (MYESC) Phillip Makgalemele said this at the two-day Records Management and Archives Administration conference that ended on Wednesday this week.
He said the importance of records management cannot be overemphasised since on a daily basis, records facilitate daily operations and decision-making. He urged records management stakeholders to partner as the theme of the workshop - ‘Strengthening Stratergic Partnerships: Records Management, key to good governance and attainment of vision 2036’ – implies. He said it is imperative for archives and records management stakeholders; regulators, information technology, administrators and lawyers to engage one another and form a cohesive environment where all parties can drive this vital function. He added that this could help to attain different organisational goals and most importantly account to the nation.
The key note speaker Professor Patrick Ngulube from UNISA–South Africa appealed to countries to use records to foster good governance through partnerships to build Africa. He said that nothing could be achieved without records, as things may go wrong. Accountability and transparency are the key factors in records other than the custodians, adding that human rights should also be considered in the world of records. “We need sustainable records vital for the Africa that we want,” he said. Prof Ngulume said that this applies socially, politically, economically and technologically.
He is also of the view that this field should partner with universities and governments to enhance the ethics and values since Africa should be built on sound values. Makgalemele said that the Government of Botswana has built three storages of records in Francistown, Kanye and Gaborone for safe keeping of records. He challenged all the attendants to observe ethical issues involved in their workspace and bear in mind that this profession is aimed at protecting human lives.
“The availability of those records is the best protection we have at our disposal,” he cautioned. He also said that he was hopeful that the attendants would learn something from the workshop as it aimed at strengthening strategic partnerships towards vision 2036.
The event was organised by Botswana National Archives and Records Services under MYESC brought experts in the field together to learn from one another.
Deputy Permanent Secretary at Office of Policy Development and Research, Mogomotsi Kaboeamodimo said that it is within their plans to have this kind of platform on annual basis to highlight remarkable contributions which records make in their space of work.