Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Probe into missing terminal benefits of late employee gets underway

The former Kgolagano College principal and the board chairperson have separately lashed out at media reports that they say paint them in bad light following a story that appeared in our previous edition about the college’s failure to release a deceased employee’s benefits.

Both Rev. Rupert Hambira (former principal) and Rev. Mpho Moruakgomo (current board chairperson) were not amused by the story that the theology college failed to account for the late Bokang Tlhako’s P144 000 in terminal benefits.

Hambira the Reverend confronted this reporter outside the school premises before our interview with the college authorities saying the story had put him in bad light.

When asked in his capacity as Kgolagano College board chairperson what had happened to Bokang’s settlement, Rev Moruakgomo declined to give an appropriate response.

“I read your bad piece of an article last week. Do you expect me to discuss internal issues with the media? I spoke to your editor Rre Mokone about it. I think you should respect other people’s privacy,” he said to this reporter.

For a period spanning more than 12 months, the college has failed to release its former lecturer’s benefits to her next of kin after her death in January last year. This is despite the fact that an insurance company, AON Botswana (Pty) Ltd, contracted by the college has paid out her settlement to Kgolagano College in March the same year.

Now the Acting Principal, Bene Thapedi, who took over from Hambira this year, finds herself having to deal with a matter that happened more than 12 months before she set foot at Kgolagano. Thapedi has impressed to the Sunday Standard that she is setting in motion an investigation to look into what happened to Bokang’s insurance settlement.

“The mother came to see me. She told me the family has not received Bokang’s benefits and I had no reason to believe she lied. Indeed the money has never been paid to the family. I have to probe the concerned authorities and find all records as to what happened to the money,” Thapedi, told the Sunday Standard.

Thabedi volunteered that Hambira is still an employee of Kgolagano College as a lecturer.
Last week, Hambira, the Gaborone City Council nominated councilor, said he was no longer the principal and the matter did not relate to him as an individual and that it has to be dealt with by the institution.

The deceased’s mother, Mary, does not want to have any more of that though. At any rate, she is all the more angry that Kgolagano College authorities have not respected a demand she made last week giving them up to seven days to pay her late daughter’s insurance settlement.

“Kgolagano College must know that they are not doing me any favour. I am talking about my child’s rights. I spoke to Ms Thapedi last week who promised to call the board of trustees to sort me out. If they think they are undermining me, I am going to take appropriate action,” warned Mary.

At the time when Reverend Hambira was principal, AON Botswana Insurance Company issued two cheques of P142, 176 and P2 000 to Kgolagano copies of which this publication is in possession of, including a copy of a letter from AON Botswana (Pty) Ltd, which stipulates that the cheques wrote out to the college were “settlement in respect of the late Bonang [spelt wrong] Tlhako” with another payout being trauma benefit settlement.

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