The Organizing Secretary of Manual Workers Union, Johnson Motshwarakgole, has dismissed suggestions that the men who recently assaulted him and left him with a swollen hip bone were sent by his political detractors.
Motshwarakgole was last week attacked by three men while disembarking from his car in Gaborone. After a brief scuffle, the men ran away, but not before one of them picked a brick and hit him on the hip. Motshwarakgole is a fierce trade unionist who heads the Manual Workers Union, the biggest trade union in the country. He has faced off with government on many occasions, especially as one of the leaders of the Botswana Federation of Public Sector unions (BOFEPUSU). The attack on Motshwarakgole comes in the wake of a break-in into the house of Botswana National Front (BNF) President Duma Boko. Allegations have been doing the rounds that the young man who was arrested in Boko’s house was part of a bigger team that was sent to assassinate him. There was also talk of a hit list that is doing the rounds, in which some politicians have been earmarked for elimination.
However, Motshwarakgole dismissed allegations that he was a wanted man, and his assailants had ties to the rumored hit list in any way. He said he believes his assailants were small time criminals who just wanted his money and cell phone.
“Those guys were just small time thugs. They just wanted my cell phone and nothing serious,” he said.
He further revealed that his hip was swollen where one of the thugs had hit him with a brick. The attack happened on the same day when Motshwarakgole was due to attend the launch of Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) parliamentary candidate for Gabane/Mankgodi Major General Pius Mokgware.