Let us just admit on the onset dear reader, that there are those who when they see this title heading, bite their lips, throw tantrums and swear words. This extends across political divide, churches, homesteads, marriages, academic Mamparas and even to some Magosi, pretenders, sell outs and some royal wannabees,, rusted rural political elites and some retired bored civil servants and politicians. Former friends of the Kings’ father find themselves in the mix, those whose friendship with his Majesty’s father clouded their judgments thinking they can control and contain HIS MAJESTY and even thinking they are Royalty.
Hate me for telling it as it is dear reader. It is a fact, infect it is one of the controversial topics that evokes high mercurial temperature from both protagonists and antagonists., even Medical Doctors, general practioners , dentists talk about it with their patients in their consultations rooms. But you know what; it is very healthy sign that all of us are keen on this topic. It is far better to jaw, jaw, than to go to war on matters that affect all of us.
Hate him or love him, King Kgafela is just one of a kind. Many mis-understood him so much so that a lot transpired in the process in his journey to liberate our lost country by way of calling for constitutional reforms. Christians followed suit with some Mamparas even writing careless and irresponsible comments on their face book page walls with title heading “Kgafela Kgafela Finish and Klaar, retired academic feminists wannabes joined in the chorus and said their ill-guided, mis-informed part on private radio stations wanting to blame HIS MAJESTY for the just course he undertook. For we are a society consumed by hate and jealousy it became a “ NATIONAL JAMBOREE, a CARNIVAL with Tshetlha joining in and going to the private radio station talking in his invented Tswana to speak salvo on his counterpart, His Majesty KK the Great.
He became a subject of ridicule, betrayed by some trusted legal eagles, was labeled with derogatory names and perceived to be high on some “Marijuana” when ironically some of them it is alleged are high on hard drugs and even involved in its illicit trade. One would never walk freely in the Malls without being randomly asked a question by every jack “ E kae fugitive, o kae Khosi Kholo Khafela “ and you would wonder who is that they are talking about.
But all these will soon be a thing of the past as the Commission in the Traditional Leadership Dispute in Respect of the Bakgatla ba Kgafela Community is coming to an end.
A brief Insight of the Judge Maluleka Commission Room – Cross Examination to one of the claimants of the Bogosi ba Bakgatla ba Kgafela, Tidimane’s son Merafhe Ramono
Advocate Maultry (Merafhe Ramono’s lawyer) cross examination to his client Merafhe Ramono:
Advocate Maultry: What do you understand by Bakgatla ba Kgafela on culture and payment of Lobola
Merafhe Ramono: What I know is that my father got married to his first wife in 1939 and that I was born in 1955. My father and his first wife divorced in 1961 or 1962.
Mood in the Commission Room: Hey banna!!!! Mosimane yoo Merrafhe o papamatsa go re ke letla leanyana.
Nyaaaa mme go monate mafoko a tswa ka gano la gagwe.
Advocate Maultry When your mother got married to Kgosi Tidimane as second wife, was bogadi / lobola paid.
Merafhe Ramono: Ooooh yes, lobola was paid to my mother. .
Even I when I got engaged to King Sobhuzha’s daughter Kgosi Kgolo Linchwe II and Mohumagadi Mma Seingwaeng were present at the engagement party. Although the marriage never took place we paid 70 herds of cattle to King Sobhuzha as Lobola.
Although the marriage plans later collapsed, the family keeps asking me to choose a wife for myself as the King has many daughters.
King Kgafela Kgafela II cross examination to Merafhe Ramono ÔÇô Sniff preview
Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela; your father sent a delegation to my father Kgosi Kgolo Linchwe II to request that he (tidimane) retires and install you as chief, why did he send that delegation to my father?
Merafhe Ramono: My father sent a delegation when he got sick and because he was also too old, to Mochudi to inform kgosi Kgolo Linchwe II that he was retiring and he would like me, as his first son to take over. He was informing Linchwe as he is from the senior house, he was not asking for permission.
Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela: Why was it important for him to inform Kgosi Kgolo Linchwe II as you put it. Why didn’t he go ahead and install you?
Merafhe Ramono: My father knew the difficulty and the fragility of this matter, I understood him to be courteous when he informed Linchwe because of family ties and seniority. Not that Mochudi had jurisdiction over him.
Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela: Sir, your father Tidimane was kgosi (regent) of Moruleng for 49 years and in that period he never wore a leopard skin. Why is that so?
Merafhe Ramono: My father as I said was not draped with a leopard skin. As a compromise he chose to stamp on it. It was the circumstances at the time that led to that.
Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela: So sir, you say Moruleng is independent from Mochudi, and in 49 years your father was unable to wear a leopard skin? Isn’t that strange?
Merafhe Ramono: My father was aware of the leopard issue, but he avoided it because of the fragility of the circumstances that prevailed at the time. Remember that as I said Kgosi Kgolo Molefi had actually publicly pronounced my father as chief of Moruleng while the regent Isang Linchwe had his own ulterior motives hence his appointment of his own brother to come to Moruleng prior to my father.
Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela lets discuss my coronation. Are you aware that during my coronation Bakgatla from Moruleng came in thousands, they drove to Mochudi?
Merafhe Ramono; I am not aware of that because I wasn’t there.
Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela: Are you aware that my coronation was live on SABC?
Ramono: I was not aware, but I was told so.
Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela: According to you, who amongst Bakgatla ba-Kgafela nation was or has been draped with a leopard skin?
Ramono: It is you kgosi Kgolo as things stand.
Kgafela: According to you, is there a period in the history of Bakgatla Ba-Kgafela where two people were draped with a leopard skin?
Merafhe Ramono; Kgosi Kgolo I am not aware of any, I accept that.
Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela: If you say you are independent of Mochudi, why have you not organized people declare yourself chief and draped yourself with a leopard skin?
Merafhe Ramono; I have not draped myself with leopard skin and declared myself a chief because i wanted to follow due process, I have waited for this moment but there has been that sentiment on the ground and approached by people some of whom are here.
As for Kgosi Nyalala it worth noting dear reader at the time in which he was to appear before the commission and answer charges of his contempt he just dodged and his lawyers stated that he had gone over seas, Slizer Tsotsi!!!!
Victory is indeed in the offing and all that remains is the warm welcome By Kgosi Kgolo Ian Khama IV at the Bakgatla ba Kgafela kgotla where he will deliver a welcome speech in his invented Tswana language.
Tshetlha: Le a e bona e tsile, E tsile e tona Kgosi Kgolo and yone ya itse ke a errata e bile ke a etshaba.
Ke ne ke echeka strength and score, ke ba tla go di bolelela go re e thata, e very Strong and patient, mme yo ne ke a errata.
And he bursts into Kgatla traditional anthem “Tlotla Kgosi e Kgolo” and show case his hitherto to unknown traditional dancing skills.
Thabo Lucas Seleke writes from Seleme Farm, Rasesa