BONELA Applauds Batswana for exercising their civic and political rights in the ended Parliamentary and Local Government Elections 27 October, 2014
The Botswana Network on Ethics, Law and HIV/AIDS (BONELA) applauds Batswana from all walks of life in country and the diaspora who participated and cast their votes in the just ended parliamentary and local government elections held on October 24, 2014.
By making a conscious choice to use their vote and usher in parliamentary as well local government representatives of their choice, Batswana have been able to fully exercise their civic and political rights, a symbol and yard stick of every country that subscribes to a democratic system or process.
BONELA would like to congratulate all the elected Members of Parliament (MPs) and Councillors and implores them as people who will be in leadership to commit themselves to the social contract they signed with voters and work together to ensure that they are true to their constitutional obligations and duties in upholding the rights of all Batswana to realise their potential and incrementally address some of the emerging social and health challenges we are currently facing.
We therefore call upon the newly elected members of parliament to:
- Embark on inclusive policy-making processes targeted at addressing the needs of marginalised, most at risk and underserved (vulnerable) communities such as Lesbian, Gays, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex persons, sex workers, People Living with Disabilities, women, children and youth. The essence of enacting laws is to protect the minority from the tyranny of the majority.
- Ratify and domesticate the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights to increase access to socio – economic and cultural services. Constitutionally guaranteeing such rights provides great opportunity for Batswana to claim their rights.
- Review the Public Health Act of 2013 which we strongly believe violates the constitutional rights of Batswana especially those living with HIV to confidentiality, privacy and the right to informed consent.
- Fast track the signing the SADC Gender Protocol to ensure that women play a meaningful role in the social, political and economic dispensation. The under-representation of women is a serious problem in all political parties.
BONELA remains committed to working in partnership with all parliamentarians across the political divide to improve the quality of life of Batswana.
BONELA is a national network of individuals and organizations that promotes a just and inclusive environment to ensure the quality of life for people affected by HIV and AIDS through human rights and legal literacy, strategic litigation and capacity building.
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