The University of Botswana Student Representative Council president, MacDonald Rakgare, resigned on Wednesday, amid allegations of embezzlement of funds amounting to P80 000.
The resignations come after allegations and counter allegations between the SRC vice president, Nico Selobilwe, and Rakgare over the misappropriation of funds accrued from the recently held successful fresher’s ball.
His resignation follows the October 5 suspensions of Selobilwe, and the Minister of Entertainment and Culture, Keitshokile Morati, on allegations of embezzling P13 000.
A day after that, Rakgare was expelled by his VP for allegedly misappropriating P80 000 of student funds, allegedly converting it to personal use.
Rakgare, popularly known as “Chilly Boy”, said in an earlier interview that he and his council had found it fit to suspend the vice president and the Minister of Entertainment and Culture after the two received cash, amounting to P20 000 from the Director of Brave Music Promotions.
Rakgare said this came after a thorough questioning of the two who had sworn that they had only received P7000 from Brazil which they handed to the SRC Treasurer.
Rakgare said that after further pressing and confirmation by Brazil that indeed he gave the SRC VP and Minister of Entertainment P20 000, the two confessed to receiving P20 000 from Brazil but again vowed that they would not account for the other missing P13 000 until the missing money for the tickets and T-Shirts was accounted for.
Rakgare said that after the confessions, the two boasted of building their own houses with the embezzled funds and it was at this time that the Executive Committee decided to suspend them indefinitely, pending further investigations.
After the two received letters of suspension and the students’ community alerted, Rakgare said the two then stole the SRC stamp and wrote a memorandum to the student community informing them of his suspension.
Contacted for comment, Selobilwe maintained that he was innocent of the malicious charges and that rather Rakgare is the one who knows where the missing funds are as he has even confessed to embezzling the funds.
In his letter of resignation dated14th October and addressed to the student community, the Vice Chancellor, Bojosi Otlhogile, the deputy Vice Chancellors and the Director of Student Welfare, Rakgare writes, “I regret to inform the student community that I have resigned from the SRC with immediate effect.”
In the letter, he fires salvos at the rest of the SRC who he says are playing around with the UB community, adding that “continuing to be part of this nonsense will dent my reputation that I value so much”.
In confirming his resignation, Rakgare cited rumours that the Executive Committee wanted to reinstate the suspended duo as some of the things that compelled him to leave, saying “if the suspended SRC members are returned it would seem as if they are not guilty and I am the one who is guilty”.
He further assured the student community that he had no hand in the embezzlement of the P80 000.
“As I write to you, I can confirm that the SRC has evidence that the suspended members took some SRC funds for personal enrichment and soon, if the SRC does not act, I will divulge everything pertaining to this matter to the relevant authorities,” reads part of the letter.
Selobilwe has expressed regret at having Rakgare on the SRC, saying he was an embarrassment and an incompetent and impassionate politician. He also condemned him for basking in the glory he does not deserve, as Rakgare had stated in the letter that he has successfully “guided the SRC to victory on the matter that involved the Ministry of Education over winter vacation allowances” as well as guiding the SRC to stage a successful fresher’s ball.
Selobilwe labeled this as blasphemy as, in fact, Rakgare was against the SRC’s decision to take the MoE to court.
Regarding their suspension, Selobilwe says the suspensions have been lifted.