Molokomme refuses to clarify Merafheís pension benefits

The attorney general has declined to respond to the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) president Dumelang Saleshandoís request to state the constitutional state of the parliament green book.

Saleshando is adamant that President Ian Khamaís decision to extend pension benefits to the retired Vice President Mompati Merafhe through the green book was unconstitutional.

In her response Athaliah Molokomme said the contents of the letter were already in the public domain and that Saleshando had already communicated its contents in the media.

It is further alleged that you are considering legal action on those issues,î she stated in a later dated 24 April 2014 leaked to the Botswana Guardian. Molokomme further stated that due to the factors she is constrained to give him a define response to the questions he raised as it could compromise the position of the Botswana government in the event of a possible lawsuit.

Earlier this year Saleshando said it is clear that the available Acts of parliament regulating benefits of Members of Parliament, ministers and the presidency does not support the awarding of the benefits by the president through the green book.

This extensions are made using some green book which is not written in any of the written laws in Botswana,î he argued at the time. He added that the green book is not law, nor an Act of parliament as such it does not have the force of law.

Saleshando argued that parliament has not given the president powers to make laws and remuneration of the former VP; hence the president abused his powers. The green book which is based on paragraph 8 of the schedule to the National Assembly (Salaries and Allowances) Act (Cap 02:06) gives the president the discretion to award particular benefits and privileges to a retired Vice president, Speaker, Deputy speaker, minister, Assistant minister or leader of opposition on compassionate grounds or any criteria determined by the president.

Last modified on Friday, 09 May 2014 14:34

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