Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Hello Mr. President in Waiting!!  Hello Sissy Boy!! Hello My Chancellor

Tla ke nne Masisi and start from the onset by stating that ga ke lelope, ga ke ngwana wa lelope and e bile ga ke ngwana wa ngwana wa lelope.

This opinion piece is not an open letter to Sissy Boy, the Chancellor of the University of Botswana and the President in waiting for the republic of Botswana. And please note dear reader that this opinion piece was written  days before the BDP 37th National Congress in Tonota where there has been an over-exaggerated race for the position of the Chairman between the VP Mokgweetsi Masisi and the Minister of Infrastructure and Housing Development, Nonofo Molefi. 

As Hon Masisi develops his road map to take this nation to greater heights and make Botswana great again, as the bacon of democracy and an African Miracle, the onus is on Masisi and his team to introspect and reconcile the political differences his predecessor had with its citizens. To be more specific to adopt an agenda for change that will bring to an end the current political impasse between Bakgatla Ba Kgafela, their King and the State. Time is now to bury the hatchet, to FORGIVE and FORGET and find a long lasting solution that will bring to an end their differences, bring peace, reconciliation and spirit of Botho. There should not be any winner or loser driven by egos and the I don’t care attitude. Bakgatla Ba Kgafela miss their King, they want him back home and their main wish is to see the State dropping the charges leveled against him, so that he can be free to visit whenever, he wishes to.

History will bear him out as a great leader misunderstood. Those with great appetite to see him fail, the lost bunch act so not due to lack of direction amongst our numbers. There’s active suppression of ideas, of persons – of thought. It won’t last forever. I take the long term view.

The onus is thus also on Sissy Boy to do the un-expected; appoint a woman Vice President of the Republic of Botswana. As many lie in hope, he must be his own man, and appoint a woman as his Vice. This Vice, must be a new comer and not drawn from the current crop of woman MPs. Botswana is gifted with a lot of many woman professionals, the cool and quiet type who’s CVs are well decorated and have worked for international organizations such as Common Wealth and the World Bank to name but just a few. It is then that you realize that there are so many men and women who currently seats in Cabinet, who do not even deserve to be there. They are just spaza’s.

I wish to take Sissy Boy down memory lane as he readies to be in control. I make reference to the 8th August 2010, opinion piece with a title heading Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela Kgafela II on a Political Tight Rope.

“At their best, the Courtrooms at the Maun Magistrate Court resemble a hospital causality ward with the accused persons nursing all sorts of injuries. In some cases, the accused person would be nursing a broken rib while others would have bandages all over.”  This description by Mmegi correspondent Lekopanye Mooketsi is not synonymous with Maun Magistrate Court only but may be prevalent with other courts throughout the country as well. Rampant shootings, killings and assaults at the hands of plain clothes security officers have now become a norm and practice under President Ian Khama’s regime. People are being killed and assaulted in chillingly high numbers”. The cold-blood gunning down of John Kalafatis was just a tip of an iceberg. Previously, there have been other cases of this nature and all these were subsequently followed by cold blooded shooting and assaults on many citizens and non citizens alike”. Amongst the many victims brutally gunned down at the hands of plain clothes security officers includes Mothusi Sephiri of Maun. Mothusi Sephiri was shot at his home in Sanyedi ward in what appeared to have been a case of mistaken identity”. 

“Even the police and the leader of the patrol team on that fateful night Gaositwe Nyame admitted that Sephiri was not the suspect they were looking for. After taking Sephiri’s life, the police gave Sephiri’s family P 5000.00 for funeral costs, but the poor family was warned that this did not mean that the police were taking full responsibility for the shooting.”

“Jeffrey Ogopeng of Serowe, Zachariah Rankwalla of Palapye and Marate Molebalwa of Palapye’s are no more. The trio were shot dead on the 3 December 2008 by the police on alleged robbery of security company vehicle that was transporting money in Serowe. Previously in September 2008, Francistown police killed three other alleged robberies who were believed to be foreigners” 

Security officers had become law unto themselves and justice is settled through the barrel of gun on the alleged criminal suspects. Interestingly the state’s did not consider such killings as anything to write home about and it is on record that one or two killings should not be considered bad. Even to this day, those who ordered the killing of JK have not been brought before the courts of law as is the case with those  who shot and gun downed  Mothusi.

For his part Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela II and Bakgatla-ba-Kgafela royals and their tribes men faced a series of law suits leveled against them. It is important to note that while the case related to as to who ordered the cold blood gunning down of John Kalafatis and the criminal shooting of Mothusi Sephiri amongst other things are to date not known, All the cases pertaining to Bakgatla Ba Kgafela royals and their tribes men have been resolved with the latest being that one of Kgosi Sekai. 

What was the state’s principal reason for pursuing Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela II and his tribesmen? Was it inspired by human rights violations as we were hoodwinked into believing or some powerful well connected politician had an undercover hand?

What was ironic about all these is that Kgosi Kgolo Kgafela Kgafela II had gone on record to quash illegal floggings in Kgatleng.

Since independence, Botswana has been served well by its 5 national principles of Democracy, Development, Self-Reliance, Unity and Botho in almost equal measure. Amongst these, Botho includes positive attributes expected of a human being such as respect, compassion, helpfulness, politeness and humility. This principle plays an important role in the way we as Batswana interact in society. It is through this principle that we are able to derive morality.

All the Dikgosi and Merafe, i.e., Babirwa, Batswapong, Bakalaka, Bakgalagadi, Basarwa, Bayei, Bangwaketse, Bakwena, Balete, Bangwato etc, must rally and support Bakgatla-Ba-Kgafela and their Kgosi Kgolo as Hon Masisi embarks on this road map of making Botswana great again that has respect for Bogosi. Politics is a short term vocation.

As Sissy Boy embarks on this journey of making Botswana great again and as he takes this bold decision of bringing to an end the Bakgatla Ba Kgafela, their King and the State impasse must be warned that there are those who derive pleasure by seeing the impasse not being resolved. That, there are actually those who are benefiting out of this and think they can use politics to score some cheap political points. How unfortunate!!!!!!!

Thabo Lucas Seleke, writing from Seleme Farms, Rasesa

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