Permanent Secretary to the President (PSP), Carter Morupisi who is currently on suspension on alleged corruption and abuse of office charges, will leave his office at the end of February.
Elias Magosi, who has been holding the fort on acting basis is expected to assume PSP responsibilities on permanent basis, sources close to the development have confirmed. President Mokgweetsi Masisi suspended Morupisi in September 2019, the day after the latter made his first appearance in court. Last year saw many prominent government officials face the wrath of the law. Morupisi together with his wife Pinny Morupisi were among the scalps, with the couple accused conjointly with common interest in corruption, abuse of office, receiving bribery and money laundering.
Despite his immediate suspension that was embraced by many including unions who regarded Morupisi as an “enemy”, he remained on full salary pay. His multiple court appearances bore no fruit, so much so that his attorneys accused the government and The Directorate on Public Prosecutions (DPP) together with The Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) of rushing to court on half-baked cases, a trend which saw many other high profiled cases slog before the courts.
Morupisi commenced his public service as Assistant Animal Production Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture in 1982, rising through the ranks to the head of the civil service. In 2011, Morupisi was appointed Director of Directorate of Public Service Management (DPSM), before assuming the PSP post in 2014. The suspended PSP became the public face of the divisions between the new administration and former President, Lt Gen Ian Khama.
Morupisi also took Khama head-on at one point when he revealed that government had bent backwards on many occasions and even broken the law to accommodate the former President’s post-retirement requests. This was revealed at a time when the feud between the former President and the current administration had taken its toll. As Morupisi leaves office, Magosi will now be elevated as substantive head of civil service.
It is believed that, Magosi was being groomed to succeed Morupisi. Magosi was appointed to the newly created Deputy Permanent Secretary to the President (PSP) following Masisi’s ascendance to the throne. Magosi who has also acted as PSP at the Ministry of Transport and Communications joined the Office of the President in April 2019, he also served as Director, Human Resources and Administration at the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Secretariat. Morupisi declined to comment when reached for comment on Thursday.
MORUPISI’S CORRUPTION CHARGES
Morupisi faces three counts relating to his involvement in the misuse of the P500 million from the Botswana Public Officers Pension Fund (BPOPF). He is accused of administering BPOF funds as a private equity manager and in the process procuring valuable consideration for himself and his wife. He is further accused of accepting bribery contrary to Section 26 of Corruption and Economic Crime Act.
The suspended PSP is accused of acting together with his wife in her personal capacity and as the Director of R7 Group, to receive valuable consideration being a Toyota Land Cruiser for himself and his wife’s company. It is alleged that Capital Management Botswana (CMB) Directors, through a web of companies and transactions allegedly bought and facilitated the Morupisis’ receipt of the vehicle. Allegedly BPOPF was to recover the alleged misused funds.
The outgoing President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ian Kirby, shares his thoughts with us as he leaves the Bench at the end of this year.
WeekendPost: Why did you move between the Attorney General and the Bench?
Ian Kirby: I was a member of the Attorney General’s Chambers three times- first in 1969 as Assistant State Counsel, then in 1990 as Deputy Attorney General (Civil), and finally in 2004 as Attorney General. I was invited in 2000 by the late Chief Justice Julian Nganunu to join the Bench. I was persuaded by former President Festus Mogae to be his Attorney General in 2004 as, he said, it was my duty to do so to serve the nation. I returned to the Judiciary as soon as I could – in May 2006, when there was a vacancy on the High Court Bench.
Botswana’s civil society is one of the non-state actors that could save the country’s democracy from sliding into regression, a Germany based think tank has revealed. This is according to a discussion paper by researchers at the German Development Institute who analysed the effects of e-government usage on political attitudes In Botswana.
In the paper titled “E-government and democracy in Botswana: Observational and experimental evidence on the effects of e-government usage on political attitudes,” the researchers offer a strongly worded commentary on Botswana’s ‘flawed democracy.’ The authors noted that with Botswana’s Parliament structurally – and in practice – feeble, the potential for checks and balances on executive power rests with the judiciary.
Bangwato in Serowe — where Bamagwato Paramount Chief and former President Lt. Gen Ian Khama originates – disagree on whether they must send a delegation to dialogue with President Mokgweetsi Masisi’s family in Moshupa. Just last week, a meeting was called by the Regent of Bamagwato, Kgosi Sediegeng Kgamane, at Serowe Kgotla to, among others, update the tribe on the whereabouts of their Kgosi (Khama).
Further, his state of health was also discussed, with Kgamane telling the attendees that all is well with Khama. The main reason for the meeting was to deliberate on the escalating tension between Khama and Masisi — a three-year bloodletting going unabated.