For the first time since one of their own was embroiled in a verbal fight with government, Ntlo ya Dikgosi has come out in the open, saying the government was not consultative over its issues with the paramount chief of Bakgatla.
Alongside his tribesmen, Kgafela II faces charges of assault and damages to a Mascom tower and the case is before court.
Kgafela would not allow the leadership to enter his area of jurisdiction on government duties, insisting that he was immune from prosecution.
The standoff resulted with the youthful traditional leader being de-recognised as the paramount chief of Bakgatla.
“Both parties never consulted us until recently when he (Kgafela) came to us to inform us about his problems with government. But it was already late as by then the government had already de-recognised him as the traditional leader of Bakgatla,” said Barolong paramount chief Lotlaamoreng II, pointing an accusing finger at the government, accusing them of heavy handedness in de-recognising the chief without their prior input and advice.
“We have given them our advice and we do not know if they will act upon it,” said Lotlaamoreng, who, together with the paramount chief of Batlokwa, Puso Gaborone, on several occasions have not taken kindly to government’s attitude towards traditional chiefs.
Citing the Bogosi Act, Lotlaamoreng argued it was an attempt by the government to deprive Dikgosi of their powers as they pile all the influence and power over their shoulders at the expense of Dikgosi.
“I think to some extent Bogosi Act needs to be revised,” the newly elected vice chairperson told a press conference on Monday.
“This time around we need to look at our mandate and see where we can make changes to make room for improvement,” Gaborone chipped-in, noting that “some roles for Dikgosi are weak, so we need to add more to them so that they can be of good use to us and the entire community”.