Connect with us


‘Economy at centre of national crisis’



MASERU – ECONOMIC problems are the root causes of the country’s political instability.
That is according to what Basotho told the National Dialogue Planning Committee (NDPC) during its consultative meeting to gather people’s views on what they want included in the reforms.

Their views are contained in a report compiled by a team made up of local consultants Dr Mothae Maruping, Bokang Montši and an international consultant, Momodou Foon. Presenting the report during the Multi-stakeholder Plenary II at the ’Manthabiseng Convention Centre this week, the consultants said Basotho believed that there is lack of robust, sustained and inclusive economic growth.

“This situation manifests itself in the form of spreading and deepening abject poverty, high and still rising rate of unemployment, mal-distribution of income and wealth, deteriorating government and state owned enterprises service delivery, deepening corruption, nepotism and politicisation in employment and dispensing of services,” the report said.
“This malaise has led to tensions, unrest and instability.”

The report said Basotho recommended that there be “genuine meritocracy, credible accountability structures and processes, transparency, functional government institutions, effective oversight, and checks and balances in government and all public institutions,” the report said.
The report said it will be necessary to have robust participatory planning, monitoring, evaluation, review structures and processes.
It says this can be done immediately by reviving the National Planning Board and process stipulated in the constitution.

It said the National Planning Board should be elevated to the status of an autonomous commission overseen by the parliamentary economic cluster.
It is envisaged that the National Planning Commission will consult widely with stakeholders in formulating a National Strategic Framework (five years horizon), Medium Term Plan (implementation) and the three year rolling Programme of Action in the form of Medium-Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) both three-year horizon.

The MTEF will be the link between the national plan and the annual fiscal budget.
It is proposed that programme budgeting will be introduced to move away from incremental line item budgeting.

The Bureau of Statistics, that will be empowered to ensure adequacy in scope, accuracy and punctuality of data and join the global data revolution, will be accountable to the commission.
It is also proposed that all government institutions should operate under results-based management systems.

Each ministry, agency and state-owned enterprise will articulate a strategic plan and a results-based monitoring system with annual performance targets set in Annual Performance Contracts.
The Annual Performance Contracts would be the basis of oversight and accountability tests administered by the relevant parliamentary committee.
It is proposed that the tenure of the minister and principal secretary in ministries and management teams for state owned enterprises should be tied to their institutions’ achievement of annual targets.

Another proposal is that the parliamentary sub-committees, economic cluster, Public Accounts Committee and Public Enterprises Committee should oversee the appointment and dismissal of board members and senior management of public institutions.

They should also monitor compliance with performance contracts and regularly invite CEOs of public institutions to account in open hearings.
According to the public input, the impact of the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Offences (DCEO) is not being felt and the level of corruption is still rising.

It is proposed that the DCEO should be brought under the economic cluster of parliament in terms of appointment of senior staff and oversight.
Parliament should ensure, through the budget process, that the anti-corruption unit has the requisite resources to do its job and that it collaborates with the police on investigations.

Staff Reporter

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



Copyright © 2022. The Post Newspaper. All Rights Reserved