Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Tribe recommends royal facing criminal charges for promotion

The Barolong Senior Chief’s Representative, Kgosi Mompati Marumoloa, may be facing criminal charges but the tribe he lords over from the second highest rung want him to be rewarded. This is all part of a domino effect that was set off by former Goodhope-Mabutsane MP, James Mathokgwane in 2015.

Sunday Standard learns that at a kgotla meeting held in Goodhope about a month back (March 14), the tribe recommended that Marumoloa be promoted to the position of Deputy Kgosi – which position has been vacant since the Barolong supreme traditional leader, Kgosi Lotlaamoreng II, joined politics in August 2015. The happened after Mathokgwane resigned to join the civil service as a director at the Selebi Phikwe Economic Diversification Unit. Botiki Motshegare, who had all along been Deputy Kgosi, assumed the top post in the Barolong Tribal Administration as the Regent and to date his previous position has not been filled. Almost two years later, the tribe wants the position filled and at the March 14 meeting, recommended Marumoloa for it.

However, there is a little complication. Marumoloa is facing criminal charges at the Lobatse Magistrate Court, having allegedly hurled vicious, private-parts insults at female junior staffers at the Goodhope kgotla. One such insult was that whenever these women’s private parts start itching (he is said to have called those parts by their crude, long-form N- Setswana name), they talk about him behind his back. Another insult (a common, backwoods insult which claims the target’s mother as collateral damage) was to the effect of hyperbolically expressing intent to reverse the complainants’ birth process via the private parts in question. Some tribesmen at the kgotla are said to have unsuccesfully tried to broker peace but Marumoloa, who is a high-ranking member of the Barolong royal family, was too worked up to calm down.

From what Sunday Standard gathers, this anger was provoked by an allegation that had been made about some aspect of Marumoloa’s private life in his absence. Such allegation reached his ears with virtually no delay, courtesy of a kgotla informant. It was then that the Chief’s Representative unloaded on those who made the allegation. The incident is supposed to have happened publicly at the kgotla and much to the women’s humiliation. Greatly displeased, the women reported the matter to the Goodhope police who launched an investigation. As a sign of the times, one of the complainants made a Facebook post about the incident, asking advice of what redress she and the others could seek.

Sunday Standard’s information is that the tribe’s recommendation has been officially communicated to the Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government under which the Department of Tribal Administration falls. The issue is not as black and white as it may seem to those unfamiliar with Setswana culture. Whatever cloud may hang over Marumoloa, his subjects feel strongly about the kgotla being staffed exclusively by senior members of the royal family.

If Marumoloa is promoted, the position he currently occupies will fall vacant. The March 14 meeting also recommended that Lotlaamoreng’s sister, Kgakgamatso Montshioa, should become Senior Chief’s Representative.

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