Botswana Office
P.O. Box 18
Gaborone, Botswana

Phone: (+ 267) 3952 441
Fax: (+ 267) 3930 821


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Programm Areas

Since its independence in 1966, Botswana has achieved significant economic and social progress under stable political conditions. But over the last 15 years, development has steadily stagnated. With growing social inequality, high unemployment and persistent extreme poverty, Botswana can no longer be considered a special case in Africa.  It is no longer hailed as an African “miracle”. Increasingly, the democratic shortcomings of its political system are being revealed.  Institutional structures of democracy such as the rule of law, multi-party systems and regular election are in place, and civil rights are enshrined in the Constitution and the laws.  However, they have been eroded over the years.  They have become increasingly cumbersome and have moved away from the citizens and their interests. The economy is still predominantly mining focused. The policy of economic diversification has failed, and environmental problems in Botswana’s fragile ecosystem are increasing.

Botswana is at the crossroads.  The next few years will determine whether politics and society can actively tackle the necessary reforms and put the country on the path of sustainable development. Citizens have a crucial role to play in this reform process. But active participation and public engagement of citizens is still limited to the ballot box.  At the same time, Botswana’s democratic institutions need to open-up for citizens and focus again more on societal interests.

Since 1973, the Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES) has been operating in Botswana and has various projects such as: the strengthening of the accountability function of the Botswana Parliament; the strengthening of the position of civil society; a more active participation of young people in political processes; and support for trade unions in shaping socio-political discourses.  Currently, the project’s focus is to strengthen citizen’s participation rights and opportunities in the processes of the formation of political will and public opinion. Direct target groups are decision-makers and leaders in society, politics and trade unions.

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