The Opposition Botswana Congress Party (BCP) has launched a multi-pronged dragnet strategy to ‘crucify’ Jacob Nkate, the former Minister of Education.
Also a former Secretary General of the ruling BDP, Nkate is now Chief Executive Officer at the Botswana Export Development and Investment Authority (BEDIA).
BCP has written a formal letter to the minister of Trade and Industry, Docus Makgatho-Malesu, urging the minister to fire Nkate from office because he is not fit to lead BEDIA.
The charges by the BCP spring from the party’s observation of the Louis Nchindo corruption case in which Nkate testified for the prosecution.
According to the BCP, Nkate should be sacked because he lied under oath. BCP says not only did Nkate lie he also gave contradictory statements while under oath.
“The findings made against Jacob Nkate raise questions of conduct that is inconsistent with the expectations attendant to those who hold the office of CEO of BEDIA as the face of the government’s drive for foreign direct investment,” states the letter, dated 1st November and signed by the BCP’s general secretary, Kesitegile Gobotswang.
The BCP says Makgatho-Malesu can show respect for the court’s findings by relieving Nkate of his duties.
The party says that it wants Nkate fired from office urgently and, perhaps hinting at the possibility of court action, the party warns that if the minister does not accede to their request, they will pursue the issue further.
“Mr Nkate should be dropped immediately if we are serious about attracting foreign direct investment,” states Gobotswang.
As if that was not enough, the party has also launched a complaint with the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC), demanding the directorate to probe Nkate following his testimony in the Nchindo case.
The BCP believes that Nkate could have committed purgery and therefore wants the DCEC to investigate.
In an interview with The Telegraph, Gobotswang confirmed the BCP report and further stated that his party would also be approaching the Law Society of Botswana’s Executive Council in a bid to request for Nkate to be charged with professional misconduct.
Nkate is a lawyer by training.
In a separate interview, minister Makgatho-Malesu told this paper that she was not aware of the BCP letter on Nkate.
“I am not aware of such a letter; if it has arrived it is probably at my office,”
Last week the Botswana Federation of Public Sector Unions (BOFEPUSO) stated that it would not sit on the same committee with Nkate because of his testimony in the Nchindo corruption case.
Separate investigations by The Telegraph indicate that DCEC has already started investigating Nkate’s conduct in the Nchindo case.