This appears in the latest Auditor General’s report on community based natural resource management in Botswana.
The audit warned that the situation could be a recipe for disputes arising in inter-ministerial potential “sit back and watch” mentality by dissatisfied stakeholders.
The report states that Botswana Tourist Office has been at the forefront of the supervision of tenders for a number of trusts, including conservation Nata, Khwai Development Tsamama, Seboba conservation, preservation and conservation Manonnye Mapanda Moremi.
“Although it may be entitled under that BTB is a member of the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), it is nonetheless became clear during interviews with officials of DWNP in their capacity as Secretariat of the TAC, the TAC was uncomfortable with the active role played by the BTB, the report said.
The audit said the strongest contention is based on the advice of TAC appearesas that if the BTB has now assumed the mandate of the TAC, without the inclusion and participation of other members of the TAC.
“In other words, the BTB was considered to have adopted a” big brother mentality “and be” the TAC when it comes to issues tender. Moreover, the BTB said that their actions were justified because most of the TAC members have been actively involved in the work of the commission, “the report said.
The audit also said that the above scenario might suggest that the roles of different members of the TAC could not have been properly defined and accepted by all members on the bids for joint ventures.
The Policy of Natural Resources, Government of Botswana, 2007, “all bidding procedures for awarding licenses for the use of natural resources should be overseen by the TAC, which will provide a technical evaluation and Abstracting tender.
The role of the TAC (as defined in the guidelines of the Joint Venture 1999) was originally on the Supervision of the bidding and operations of the Joint Venture Company (JVP).
The role of the TAC has since been expanded and the Committee participated actively in all the Community Based Natural Resources Management (CBNRM) processes, planning and implementation of projects.
The audit report also recommends that all members of the TAC should be encouraged and fully engaged in the tendering process so that the committee receives the contribution of all its members.
Management further indicated that the scenario in hand was such that some major players have not given the program the attention it deserves, partly because USAID (NRMP), which helped establish the CBNRM is housed in DWNP.
The program is generally perceived as a program of wildlife.