DIS cuts down on security detail to high profile

23 Nov 2018

The Directorate of Intelligence and Security (DIS) has withdrawn its agents who were deployed at the Attorney General Chambers (AGs), government departments and some high profile individuals’ residences.

Lawyers at the AGs had been assigned armed security detail who acted as their chauffeurs when they appeared before the courts. The withdrawal of the agents comes on the backdrop of reports that the DIS has also withdrawn security detail from Speaker of the National Assembly Gladys Kokorwe in 2016.

Kokorwe’s former heavy security has long been controversial. In 2016, The Sunday Standard reported that the security detail was put together behind closed doors and was kept a secret even from the Parliamentary Committee for Members Rights, Interests and Privileges which is responsible for the conditions and service of Members of Parliament and the Speaker of the National Assembly. 

 Sources within the government enclave said there was no consultation when the agents were withdrawn from providing government lawyers with security.

There are even claims that the directorate has reduced the size of security detail that was assigned to former President Ian Khama’s sister Jacqueline Khama.

Responding to The Telegraph queries, DIS spokesperson Edward Robert said “Agent deployments are by and large security issues which we would not discuss with the media.”

“And as we have said before, deployments follow thorough assessment to determine the level of threat in existence and the kind of security response needed.”

It is understood that the decision to reduce the size of security details assigned to individuals is part of DIS Director General attempts to restructure the intelligence agency and align it with its core mandate. Former President Ian Khama’s security was also downsized recently. It is also understood that Khama’s security detail was larger than that of former President Festus Mogae. Reports indicate that the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) has since confirmed that it has withdrawn its personnel that was assigned to Khama’s holiday residence in Mosu. Khama’s family among them his sister Jacqueline had their security beefed up in 2009.

Under the national laws, only the Head of State and the Vice President have around the clock security agents following them.