As the curtain falls to a close on the year 2016, Francistown Mayor has called on the second city’s residents to take time to reflect on the successes, failures and challenges as a city.
Addressing the business community and other key stakeholders during the Mayor’s Christmas ball recently, Mayor Sylvia Muzila urged the city’s citizenry to accelerate their energies and resources in establishing more employment opportunities.
“We have had challenges as a city as a result of the closure of the mines around us this year. This resulted in massive job losses, which has affected the economy of Francistown and the country as a whole,” highlighted Muzila.
“These losses of jobs have increased the numbers of the already huge unemployment which has already been a challenge. This has had negative impact on the city’s economic growth and the Vision 2020 which we have embarked on.”
Muzila summoned the city council and business sector to find ways to forge ahead and mitigate the prevailing harsh economic conditions, in the metropolis and surrounding areas, to keep Francistown alive and economically vibrant.
“I implore you to accelerate your energies and resources towards businesses. Businesses which will create employment in the city of Francistown. As council, we believe any type of economic activity as long as it impacts in the area of unemployment,” encouraged the Mayor.
“No matter how small or big, in areas of industry, manufacturing, retail shops, recreational facilities and so on, these developments are welcome as long as they create employment in the city,” she emphasized.
The Mayor said concerted efforts in establishing businesses will assist Francistown to tackle the high rate of unemployment.
However Muzila was quick to point out that, although it may seem as if the city council is not doing anything to facilitate ease of business, it has actually been servicing the 42-hectare old golf course adjacent to Nyangabgwe Referral hospital, earmarked to be the central business district.
“There have been no tangible projects but a lot of work has been underway such as the Environmental Impact Assessment and surveying of the new CBD. But in 2017 we expect a number of joint ventures to get underway in the Central Business District,” said Muzila.