Botswana National Front (BNF) President Duma Boko has accused President Ian Khama of turning the University of Botswana (UB) leadership into what he called a big brother surveillance outfit.?Addressing multitudes of UB students on Thursday this week, Boko said Khama deliberately appointed his younger brother, Anthony Khama, and his lawyer, Parks Tafa, to consolidate his grip on the operations of the university.?
“The appointment was big brother at work. Literally, he is a big brother to one of the appointees. He appointed one of his brothers who has never been here before as a student,” said Boko.?Questioning the rationale behind the appointment of Anthony Khama, Boko wondered what value Khama would bring to UB.?“Now he is an overseer, what does he know about the culture of this institution? All he has are ears and eyes for his big brother,” said Boko describing the appointment of UB council members as a troubling issue. ┬áHe said the appointments were intended to police students.?Turning to Tafa, Boko said, “The other one is the President’s lawyer.” ┬áThe appointments of the two men, Boko said were aimed at taking control of the UB by Khama.?
“He does not care about you; you were not consulted when these appointments were done, you are not taken serious,” said Boko who is also the leader of the opposition coalition; Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC).?Boko said the appointment of UB council members follow the same pattern as the recent appointments in government institutions which he said are being done without profound consideration.?“They want to make sure that all the oversight and democratic institutions are emasculated. What they want is to appoint their sycophants; they have destroyed the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC), the ombudsman, the judiciary and every independent institution in this country and it is now not shocking to me that they are now destroying UB by appointing sycophants,” he said.?
Boko also continued his onslaught on UB lectures accusing them of failing to join the students in their struggle.?“Where are your lectures, what are they saying about this state of affairs. Your struggle should also be their struggle,” he said. Boko said though he had been accused several times of flinging a bulk of malice at UB academics, he had tried to be polite in his criticism of the same lectures.?He called on UB academics to differentiate between what he called prophesy and analysis.?“When you present yourself as an analyst, analyse, don’t prophesize me. Lets understand those roles; prophesy and analysis. We are not interested in opinions but facts. Those who analyse must give us analysis, nothing else,” he said.?
If they don’t, Boko said, they deserve to be told and not once but many times. He added that the UB analysts were failing to come up with a solution for the challenges afflicting their own institution.?Boko told students that they have the power to effect change through the ballot paper in 2014. He said should UDC wrestle power from the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP), they would overhaul the public service and rope “in a new bunch.
”?Earlier on, Boko also expressed concern about the issue of students allowance saying the students had been turned into a lucrative market.?“Somebody is forcing you to buy from him or her. Decisions regarding your book allowances have been taken away from you.
You are directed as to where the money should go,” he said and likened the arrangement to extortion.?“There must be competitors for your money. Those who take decisions are not taking them with you. They are not taking you serious and that is why you have been made prisoners in your own institution,” said Boko.?
He added that “to the management of UB, students matter marginally. You don’t matter to the administration if you do, they would have consulted you. But the people who matter the most in a university are students; these lectures would have nobody to lecture to if you were not there.”?Boko said a task force that was assigned to look into among other things, the student bar which he referred as a tuck shop, recommended that it should be relocated, was ignored by the UB management.?“Without good reason, this recommendation was not only ignored but replaced with something else; closure,” he said.