Friday, September 18, 2020

 Soldier gets ambassadorial appointment

For the first time since President Khama took over from Festus Mogae ten months ago, a retiring military man, who holds the rank of Major General in the Botswana Defence Force (BDF), is expected to be appointed to serve as an ambassador.                                                       An internal announcement has already been made at BDF about his imminent retirement.
 
Information passed to The Sunday Standard indicates that Khama overruled the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation over this ambassadorial appointment.
 
It is understood that the Foreign Affairs Ministry had recommended a good number of civilians but the appointing authority recommended out-going Major General Jefferson Tlhokwane who is on three-months notice to leave the army.   
 
The Sunday Standard learned that Tlhokwane retired a few years ago but was then recalled on a contract bases of which he had served about three years.
 
In a telephone interview with The Sunday Standard, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Phandu Skelemani, confirmed that only one vacant post for an ambassador is available in Nigeria.

He said they had submitted names to the Office of the President where the final decision would be made even though consultations are still on-going.  
“I do not have any problem with anyone being appointed ambassador, whether the person is a nurse or a soldier, as long as that person knows his or her country very well,” said Skelemani, adding that he would only have serious problems if somebody were appointed without proper qualifications.
 
He further said a good number of ambassadors would be coming home before the end of the year as their contracts expire.
 
”I am not in the office but am overseas; however, among those who will be retiring is Norman Moleboge.”
Moleboge is a former Botswana Police Commissioner who has been Botswana’s representative in Namibia.

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