Thursday, July 7, 2022

Unions vow to continue meeting at GSS grounds

BOFEPUSU Gaborone region Chairperson Wabakwa Mbise has said that they will continue meeting at the Gaborone Secondary School Grounds (GSS) though the police have previously refused them permission to host the gathering without permit.

“We know their (police) intention is to control and monitor us, that is why they want us to come to them asking for permission which they will refuse to give,” said Mbise.

He explained that they have communicated to the police a schedule indicating how they will continue meeting while the workers’ strike is suspended.

Mbise said the intention of the gathering is to talk about labour issues and inform members about how far the negotiations with the Government have gone.

“There are other people, such as football people, who just meet in their places of choice without permits but are not pushed out. The law allows us as employees to meet within the employer’s compound, just as GSS ground is the premises of the employer. So we are not violating the law,” said Mbise.

He explained that they have met about five times, once a month, in the previous months, but were told that they need a permit to meet.

He indicated that they will be meeting again on the 29th November and will not ask for any permission.

Mbise said members intend to carry on, no matter how hard it is.

“I do not decide alone but I take mandate from them every time we meet,” he said, adding that the meetings are held country wide by members of BOFEPUSO.

The Regulating Officer in Gaborone, Samuel Moepeng, said he received the schedule for the BOFEPUSU members about how they will continue meeting but wrote them a letter advising them that they are required to ask for a permit.

“No one can be denied to hold a gathering and they have the right to do so but every meeting held in public requires them to have a permit from the regulating officer,” said Moepeng.
He explained that if the Union members continue to meet without permits, action will be taken against them.

“We look at everybody’s safety and also check if the venue will be free to be used so that we can send police officers to provide security,” said Moepeng.

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