Monday, October 25, 2021

Gov’t clueless about Police P30 million worth of BTCL shares

The Minister of Defence Justice and Security Shaw Kgathi is in the dark about who manages the Botswana Police Service Scheme that recently purchased over P30 million worth of Botswana Telecommunication Corporation Limited shares.

Kgathi was answering questions from Members of Parliament who wanted to know who manages the scheme and whether the scheme is audited.

Minister in the Ministry of Trade and Industry Vincent Seretse said the amount of money involved is huge and the Minister does not know where the fund is located. 

“Minister Kgathi don’t you think it wise and a prudent thing for Police officers to use Asset Managers to do and guide them in investment because police officers are police officers and is not their area of specialty,” said Seretse.

Kgathi said as of 25th February 2016 Botswana Police has facilitated the purchase of over 30 million worth of BTCL shares for members of the Botswana Police Service. He said it is expected that each member will individually and collectively enjoy the shares dividends paid out on regular basis. The Defence Minister however does not have specific details of who manages the scheme but he says it is possible that the Police would have put management to run the scheme.

Members of Parliament further wanted to appreciate what the transaction entails and what informed the decision by Botswana Police to buy shares. They also wanted to know how going forward Botswana Police Service will deal with issues of companies floating shares.

“Are we likely to see Botswana Police Service going to Stock Exchange and engaging in business? Are we going to see all security organs in your Ministry taking that direction? Is the audit of this scheme subjected to normal government auditing” asked Dithapelo Keorapetse, Member of Parliament for Selibe Phikwe West.

Member of Parliament for Gaborone North Haskins Nkagiwa also asked Minister Kgathi whether police officers were involved in the decision to of buy BTCL shares and  why such excitement on BTCL shares.  

Nkagiwa suspect that the Ministry might have misled police officers into buying the BTCL adding that the future might not look good for BTC.

 “Officers were encouraged to purchase shares using some part of their accumulated savings as an investment portfolio. This was considered a viable investment,” said Kgathi. Concluding that he is unable to explain why the police got excited in buying BTCL shares.

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