Sunday, May 22, 2022

Last woman to see Motswaledi alive fears for her life

A South African woman believed to be the last friend to see Gomolemo Motswaledi alive now lives in fear for her life after her house was broken into a few hours after Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) president died in a freak car accident. The woman who was captured in a closed circuit television (CCTV) footage with Motswaledi in a Mafikeng hotel reception moved from her home this week and sought refuge from friends because she is worried that her life may be in danger.

Although a very close friend of Gomolemo Motswaledi with a long standing relationship of about five years, the woman whose name cannot be disclosed for security reason could not even attend the funeral in Serowe last week because she was warned by friends that her life may be in danger. The woman who is in the missing CCTV footage is so concerned about her security that she would not even agree to an interview with the Sunday Standard. During a meeting with the Sunday Standard accompanied by her lawyer in Mafikeng Wednesday night, her lawyer insisted that his main concern was the security of her client and indicated that they may ask South African authorities to intervene.

On the day Motswaledi died in Pitsane on his way to Gaborone, the woman came back from work to find her house had been broken into and ransacked but nothing had been stolen. She still has no idea what the intruders were looking for. Although she reported the case to South African police in Mafikeng, the law authorities could not open a case because nothing was stolen. The Sunday Standard investigation team has been able to reconstruct Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) president’s journey from Gaborone on July 29ththrough the Tlokweng border to Sandton in Johannesburg and back via Ventersdorp, Lichtenburg, Coligny and Mafikeng where he spent the night. Motswaledi checked in at Kobo Segole Guest Lodge in Mafeking, 31 Churchill Avenue on the night of July 29th at 20:11 and was booked at House 29 room 10. Hotel attendants told Sunday Standard that shortly after checking in Motswaledi returned to the reception dressed in his checked pajamas and sleeping gown and asked to be connected to the hotel Wi-Fi so that he could check his e-mail. While still going through his mail at the reception lounge, a woman walked through the door and told the man behind the reception desk that “Ke batla monna yole” (I am looking for that man).

The pair then left the reception together and that was the last time they saw Motswaledi. “He did not check out from his room, even the security men on duty say they did not see him leave in the morning but strange enough, his room keys were handed in”, said the hotel spokesperson. The hotel security last week sifted through hours of CCTV footage for the woman who left the hotel reception with Motswaledi, but could not find any trace of her even though the cameras covered the whole reception area and the exit. The missing film is from a crucial window of time during which Motswaledi was last seen at the hotel and in the company of the woman who is now worried that her life may be in danger. The colour film only shows Motswaledi checking in at the hotel dressed in a dark suit and later seated on a couch in his sleeping gown, going through his iPad. Motswaledi’s dead body was discovered by police officers on the driver’s seat of an Audi A3 wreck reported to have overturned. The Sunday Standard investigation desk has been able to reconstruct Motswaledi’s journey from the morning he left Gaborone on July 29th to the morning of July 30 when his dead body was discovered. His passport BN 0029793 was stamped at the Tlokweng border in Botswana and Kopfontein in South Africa on the morning of 29th July 2014. About 10 am he was already in Sandton. At 10:40 am he bought R 200 worth of SIM card and air time at an MTN store in Sandton and was helped by a Joshua Du Wet, a salesperson at the shop.

There is a window of about four hours which the Sunday Standard investigation team cannot account for. At 2:28 pm Motswaledi re-emerges at Mandela Square in still in Sandton where he spent R410 on an orange microfiber crav, a white bow tie, an orange bow tie, a yellow stripped tie and a yellow and white tie at the Tie Shop. Motswaledi then left Sandton around 3:00 pm and drove back until he stopped at Blue Alley Filling Station in Ventersdorp where he filled 42.26 liters of Petrol worth R600.09 assisted by a Donald Matlhaku, a petrol attendant at the service station.

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