The community of Francistown on Thursday finalised their ‘shopping list’ of projects to be submitted to the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development for funding.
A Special Full Council meeting of the Francistown City Council (FCC) had earlier got an update on the NDP 11 projects. Addressing the FCC Principal Economist Ethel Mosojane, said that the communities of Francistown East, South and West had been consulted at ward level to identify projects to be funded under the P10m Constituency Fund.
The proposed projects range from construction of houses by the Ward Development Committees (WDC) to rent out and generate funds. There is also the development of parks, construction of WDC offices in the wards, renovation of schools, the tarring of internal roads, building of guest houses and gardens among many other things. All the wards have proposed the installation of tower lights in their wards.
“The deliberate decision was taken to include installation of tower lights in all the 25 wards,” revealed Mosojane. She said the proposed financial allocation was divided among the constituencies according to the total number of development wards per constituency. “The proposed ceilings per ward therefore for Francistown East and South which have eight wards each stand at P1 250000 and Francistown west which has nine wards.
Each ward proposed funds allocation stands at P1 111 111.10,” she said adding that, after costing, the budget proposal will be submitted to the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development for funding. There are 19 political wards and 25 development wards in Francistown. An animated debate ensued over the issue of the allocation of the funds to the communities. One section of the house argued that, because some wards are standalones while others are constituted by several townships, there would be no fairness as those constituted by several sub-wards will get more money than the standalones. Some political wards have got as many as three WDCs, for example.
“The allocation should be as per the political wards only,” argued Zazambi Tuelo while counterarguments were that the money be allocated to WDC. The Thursday meeting resolved that the funds would be allocated to WDCs since they are the drivers of development.
FCC also resolved that, in the instances where the community seeks land for purposes of developing a project and the land is not available, the WDCs may consider alternatives such as making a park or open space available for the project.
The final list will be presented to the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development and funding is expected in the next financial year in April.