Batawana Senior Chief Represntative Kgosi Charles Letsholathebe has urged election officers who will be conducting elections in the North West District to be wary of language barriers in the region. Speaking at a two day orientation workshop for election supervisors organized by the Independence Electoral Comission in Maun on Monday, Letsholathebe noted that there is need for all those who will be partaking in the election process to express utmost patience as they are likely to have clients who are not conversant in both Setswana and English.These people are found mostly in the Okavango district which is dominated by ethnic groups, most of who do not speak both languages at all.
Supervisors were also told to be extra cautious and to keep away from political manipulation or intimidation.IEC chief elections officer Jacob Motlhanka advised that from time they will come across incidents whereby politicians more especially will try their best to derail their focus, introduce fraudulent attempts of voting or offer bribes to allow for voter trafficking. “This is on its own a serious offence which is punishable by law. So you need not be victims of people wanting to manipulate the system just because they want to win. Please report such incidents whenever you come across them”, he said. He echoed Letsholathebe’s sentiments that there should be no systematic bias against any identifiable group such as people with low literacy levels, ethnic minorities, as well as women and children “You must follow the law to the latter. Do not use emotions because that can tarnish the whole process and invite even more consequences which we might all be made to regret.You need to ensure also that you treat all voters equally because it is a legal requirement and a planning tool for election management”.