Gaborone, Botswana 25th August 2020- This morning the United Nations Development Programme Resident Representative to Botswana, Her Excellency Jacinta Barrins, paid a courtesy call on the Minister for Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration, Honourable Kabo Morwaeng, to brief him on various ongoing activities relevant to his Ministry. Ms. Barrins said the UNDP was pleased to be supporting the Government of Botswana across several areas of work pertinent to the Botswana National Development Plan 11, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and His Excellency the President's Priorities, including: Governance, the Environment and Economic Diversification, among others.
“UNDP enjoys a close working relationship with your Ministry as the Co-Chair of the Project Steering Committee for our joint Governance project, “Support to the fulfilment of Human Rights, Access to Justice and the Empowerment of Youth and Women Project (2018-2021)," said Ms. Barrins. As a result of the partnership, the Ministry for Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration and the UNDP cooperate in the areas of Human Rights, Multi-Dimensional Poverty Index, Disability and Anti-Corruption. UNDP supported the Human Rights Unit to form a Human Rights Consultative Committee, develop a National Human Rights Strategy and Action Plan and develop a database to monitor the implementation of Botswana's human rights commitments, and draft a bill to transform the Ombudsman's Office to include a human rights mandate. In order to ensure the credibility of the Ombudsman at national and international levels, the Government was also encouraged ensure compliance with the Paris Principles in formulation of the Ombudsman Amendment Bill and to ensure the institution was well-equipped to promote and protect human rights in Botswana.
This year saw Botswana, for the first time, being included in the global Multi-Dimensional Poverty Index (MPI), which was launched on the 16th July 2020 in Gaborone. UNDP is working together with Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) to develop an MPI for Botswana that measures deprivations across a number of indicators, including in health, education and living standards.
UNDP continues to support the Coordinating Office for People with Disabilities on the development of a National Disability Policy, National Disability Strategy and Disability Law, and accession to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Ms. Barrins encouraged the Government to accelerate finalisation and adoption of the National Disability Framework. She added that the UNDP is ready to support the incorporation of any revisions to the Framework arising from the Cabinet process. The Government was also encouraged to accede to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability (CRPD).
On anti-corruption matters, the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) has received UNDP support to: finalise the National Anti-Corruption Policy, develop a Quality Management System, build capacity of officers to develop a Monitoring and Evaluation Framework and Manual, and develop regulations and a training manual to operationalise the Whistleblowing Act. Ms. Barrins requested the Honourable Minister to support the finalisation and endorsement of the National Anti-Corruption Policy at Cabinet and Parliamentary levels, as a concerted stride towards making Botswana a high-income country.