Sunday, September 20, 2020

Judges to testify in Kgafela case

Two High Court judges, Mpaphi Phumaphi and Key Dingake, are expected to give evidence in Bakgatla paramount Chief Kgafela II’s constitutional challenge.

According to court papers filed before court, Phumaphi, a Francistown High Court judge, opined years ago during his submissions to the Balopi Commission that the Botswana Constitution was a bad piece of legislation that’s not worthy of any respect of law.

Kgafela insists that the criminal charges against him are baseless because the country’s constitution, which gives the charges some legitimacy, is a fraud.

“I am interested to interview justice Phumaphi on these reports and what he meant, coming from a High Court Judge. I will obviously need the assistance of this court with appropriate subpoenas of justice Phumaphi and the Balopi Commission,” states Kgafela in his application currently before the High Court and waiting to be allocated a judge.

Kgafela says that along with President Ian Khama, Phumaphi is one of the most important witnesses he intends to call.

Another Judge, Key Dingake, also graces Kgafela’s list of witness.Dingake is an acclaimed Constitutional and Administrative law scholar. He has also written extensively in the area of Labour law and Human Rights.

In his books and journal articles, Dingake advocates for a review of the Botswana constitution and possibly the incorporation of 2nd generation rights such as right to Education, right to health care, housing and recognition of cultural rights.

Kgafela says he wants the Lobatse based judge to share his observations with the Court.

Although her office will represent government on this case, the Attorney General, Athaliah Molokomme, is also a potential witness. Kgafela says that he intends to expose Molokomme’s office for the fraud he claims it is.

Kgafela also claims that instead of being the custodian of law and order, the Attorney General is a generator of chaos and impedes his (Kgafela)’s efforts to bring about law and order in Kgatleng district.

According to Kgafela, minister Ndelu Seretse, who is also listed as a witness, admired and even encouraged Kgafela’s way of restoring order in Kgatleng.

Seretse is also said to have remarked that even President Khama loved Kgafela’s approach to discipline and law enforcement.

“My questioning of these Police officers and the then minister of Defence Mr Seretse, especially about meetings I held with him, will show this fraud. This is a man who told me in the presence of Mr Maclean Letshwiti that the President, Mr Khama, loved our approach to discipline and law enforcement using traditional methods and that he was urging us forward,” says Kgafela.

“I would like everybody who gives evidence to do give verbal evidence under oath. There should not be any room for any witness to hide behind an affidavit backed by a dishonest lawyer,” he further states in his volumous affidavit totaling over 100 pages.

Kgafela says that he wants to question each and every one of the witnesses that will be called to court.

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Sunday Standard September 20 – 26

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of September 20 - 26, 2020.