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Mob justice victim was a recidivist – Police

Mogoditshane Police Station Commander Zacharia Tshenyego confirmed that the late Thabo Olatlheng who was killed in a controversial mob justice incident this week was a seasoned criminal.

Responding to questions from WeekendPost,  Tshenyego said their records show two ‘serious’ break- in and robbery cases registered under his name while other unconfirmed cases are registered with different police stations. Earlier this week 24 year old Lotlhakane-West born Thabo Olatlheng was killed in Senthumole Ward in Mogoditshane by residents who were tracking him down after a car break in that night. According to Tshenyego, it looks like the deceased had the habit of breaking in cars and that angered the residents.

Olatlheng was a resident of Mogoditshane and Naledi and was serving bail for different offences at the time of his demise. It is also alleged that he was on a bail of a murder, a case police in Mogoditshane could not prove at the time of going to press. “I cannot say he was a criminal but there are cases registered under his name. He was still innocent until proven guilty by the courts of law”, said Tshenyego. However Tshenyego also confirmed that in both two accounts, the perpetrator used violence in his victims something that shows that he was dangerous.

The Acting Station Commander said at the time no arrests have been made because information is not coming forthwith, however they are conducting a lot of interviews. “It is not easy to identify victims unless some people can volunteer information or one of the relatives was there but we are continuing our investigations,” he said.

Prominent Lawyers offered their views on Mob Justice via social media

Uyapo Ndadi

Those who have blood on their hands must face the full might of the law. Mob (in) justice has no place in a democratic society just as any crime. Yes, when one is under attack they can act in self defence and their conduct must reasonably be aimed at overcoming the threat. Anything beyond that is a crime for which consequences must follow.

Kgosi Ngakayagae  

I genuinely believed we were past that stage in our national development where we could argue on whether mob justice constitutes acceptable societal intervention against crime. The current debate does not only speak to the extent to which we have been brutalized by crime as a society but also to the extent to which we have lost faith in the law enforcement machinery and the justice system.

It is symptomatic of a damaged societal psyche that needs to be corrected through deliberate community and state led intervention programs that can make us feel safe in our homes. We need to address the crime situation before some among us say, as Edward Aden Tswaipe correctly remarked, that we rape the sisters of those who rape our sisters. Our reasoning as a society has degenerated to that level.

Diba Diba  

First of all, there is no such thing as mob justice. A mob is not capable of meting out justice (fairness). Mob justice is the law of the jungle which has no place in a civilized society. A civilized society adheres to the rule of law, justice by law and due process. Mob justice is simply barbaric. I hear people arguing that condemning mob justice means we tolerate what the murdered person is alleged to have done. No. Far from it. I am against taking the law into your own hands. I am against you being the complainant, prosecutor, judge and executioner. Until proved guilty, the man is only a suspect. Why not allow the law to take its course?

I perfectly understand that people are sometimes frustrated by law enforcement and justice system. Mob justice is not, however, the answer to that frustration. When you believe in mob justice: when do we follow mob justice and when do we follow due process?
How many of us, or those who participated in dispensing with the “justice”, have any evidence of what he is alleged to have done? Now, even assuming that he stole, and that mob justice is acceptable, is murder an appropriate punishment for theft, or whatever he is alleged to have done?

Busang Manewe

I am watching the debate on lynching of thieves from a safe distance. I am not going to take part in the debate but I have a view, a very strong one for that matter. My view is informed by my experience both as a Lawyer and a victim of crime, not once, not twice. The day these thugs invade your private space (bedroom) in the dead of the night while you are sleeping and brazenly beat the hell out of you in front of your children, you will forget sekgoanyana sekgoanyana se o tholang o se choma ko court le mo FB.

Sometime on or around October 2018, a mob of about 10 young boys attacked me in my car, smashed windows and robbed me of my valuables at knife and gun point. It was the most traumatic experience I have ever had and do not wish it upon anybody. They robbed me of a new S8 or whatever it is was, valued at about 16k, ipad valued at about 12k and an iphone valued at 9k. I had to replace my window and programme the motors at an unGodly amount.

In December 2013, the thugs got into my bedroom and stole huge sums of money, proceeds of motshelo. Following the massive security breach at my residence, we had to put in place massive security upgrades at an exorbitant cost. We literally had to turn the house into a fortress. No arrests were made in both instances.

Immediately after the armed robbery, I was instructed on a matter in which client wanted representation in a case in which he Robbed and murdered someone in Mmopane for his sumsung Mobile phone. The matter was coming up for trial and I told him and his parents in clear and unequivocal terms, that I was a victim of a similar armed robbery a few days back and I shall not take their brief.

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Free at last: Ian Kirby Speaks Out

6th December 2021
Justice Ian Kirby

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.

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Civil society could rescue Botswana’s flawed democracy’ 

6th December 2021
Parliament

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.

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Bangwato at loggerheads over Moshupa trip

6th December 2021

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.

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