The Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP), continues to contradict itself in the highly publicised multi-million Pula National Petroleum (NPF) case. This week the DPP filed a supplementary affidavit in which former DIS Director General Isaac Seabelo Kgosi is said to be implicated in the P250 million NPF scandal.
Initially, Kgosi was to be a star witness for the State against his alleged co-accused Bakang Seretse. The State has however made a switch, and now wants Kgosi to answer for his alleged involvement in the matter. It is alleged that sometime in 2017, Major General Molefi Seikano, Commander, Ground Forces Command, currently serving as Joint Forces Commander for Deployed Joint Task Forces in Border and Anti-Poaching operations, engaged former DIS Director Kgosi concerning whether DIS had any deployable intelligence and surveillance capabilities to support Botswana Defense Force (BDF) border and anti-poaching efforts in the general area around Shaile, Lenyanti and Savuti.
Investigations reveal that the mandate of dealing with poaching in the affected area was the prerogative of Major General Seikano and the Botswana Defence Force. It further reveals that Seikano was unaware of the process of securing P250 million which was ostensibly for the construction of Petroleum Storage facilities, as facilitated by Kgosi, Kenneth Kerekang, Sadique Kebonang, Bakang Seretse (Basis Points, Khulaco and Kgori Capital), for which variation had been sought and obtained by Kgosi and Minister Kebonang for the acquisition of sophisticated security equipment and advanced surveillance capabilities to address the supposed threat.
In his founding affidavit, Seikano confirmed that it is correct that Kgosi embraced the idea to support his operations on which he arranged a meeting to enable Kgosi to understand the problem. “I state after being duly briefed by me and my staff, the two teams planned a trip to the area of concern. After having completed the tour I never received feedback from Director General Kgosi, but instead, sometimes after I was visited by some DIS officers at my office with a map in which they already demarcated the Shaile, Linyanti and Savuti hotspots,” alleged Seikano.
Seikano confirmed that he flatly refused the proposal. “I stated that the developments of special forces capability to Botswana, is the exclusive preserve of the BDF through the Commander, BDF and it is not the mandate of the DIS to develop special forces capabilities,” Seikano said. He distanced himself and stated that he was not aware that Kgosi requested money for addressing poaching threats and other issues from either the National Petroleum Fund or anywhere else.
In his founding affidavit, Seretse through his attorney Kgosietsile Ngakaagae, requested for the calling of oral evidence on account of a disputes fact that cannot be resolved on the affidavits as filed. “President Masisi and former President Khama administration knew about the contracting of Khulaco (Pty) Ltd, at the transactional services company with regards to the transaction at the heart of the proceedings instant. For this fact both Khama and Masisi must withstand examination and cross examination,” said Bakang.
They also request that Sadique Kebonang, Eric Molale and the then Minister responsible for the Presidency must undergo cross examination. Ngaakagae worried that there seems to be feet dragging from the DPP’s side as they have not filed any opposition. “2 of our applications are unopposed and we have just received their supplementary affidavit. All we received was notice of opposition, they do not state the grounds of which the opposition will be made. They must file, they can’t just rock up in court like they did today and say they are opposing.” The matter is set to be heard on the 13th December 2019.
While there is no hard-and-fast rule in politics, former Molepolole North Member of Parliament, Mohamed Khan says populism acts in the body politic have forced him to quit active partisan politics. He brands this ancient ascription of politics as fake and says it lowers the moral compass of the society.
Khan who finally tasted political victory in the 2014 elections after numerous failed attempts, has decided to leave the ‘dirty game’, and on his way out he characteristically lashed at the current political leaders; including his own party president, Advocate Duma Boko. “I arrived at this decision because I have noticed that there are no genuine politics and politicians. The current leaders, Boko and President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi are fake politicians who are just practicing populist politics to feed their egos,” he said.
Former Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) parliamentary hopeful, Lawrence Ookeditse has rejected the idea of taking up a crucial role in the Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) Central Committee following his arrival in the party this week. According to sources close to development, BPF power brokers are coaxing Ookeditse to take up the secretary general position, left vacant by death of Roseline Panzirah-Matshome in November 2020.
Ookeditse’s arrival at BPF is projected to cause conflicts, as some believe they are being overlooked, in favour of a new arrival. The former ruling party strategist has however ruled out the possibility of serving in the party central committee as secretary general, and committed that he will turn down the overture if availed to him by party leadership.
Ookeditse, nevertheless, has indicated that if offered another opportunity to serve in a different capacity, he will gladly accept. “I still need to learn the party, how it functions and all its structures; I must be guided, but given any responsibility I will serve the party as long as it is not the SG position.”
“I joined the BPF with a clear conscious, to further advance my voice and the interests of the constituents of Nata/Gweta which I believe the BDP is no longer capable to execute.” Ookeditse speaks of abject poverty in his constituency and prevalent unemployment among the youth, issues he hopes his new home will prioritise.
He dismissed further allegations that he resigned from the BDP because he was not rewarded for his efforts towards the 2019 general elections. After losing in the BDP primaries in 2018, Ookeditse said, he was offered a job in government but declined to take the post due to his political ambitions. Ookeditse stated that he rejected the offer because, working for government clashed with his political journey.
He insists there are many activists who are more deserving than him; he could have chosen to take up the opportunity that was before him but his conscious for the entire populace’s wellbeing held him back. Ookeditse said there many people in the party who also contributed towards party success, asserting that he only left the BDP because he was concerned about the greater good of the majority not individualism purposes.
According to observers, Ookeditse has been enticed by the prospects of contesting Nata/Gweta constituency in the 2024 general election, following the party’s impressive performance in the last general elections. Nata/Gweta which is a traditional BDP stronghold saw its numbers shrinking to a margin of 1568. BDP represented by Polson Majaga garnered 4754, while BPF which had fielded Joe Linga received 3186 with UDC coming a distant with 1442 votes.
There are reports that Linga will pave way for Ookeditse to contest the constituency in 2024 and the latter is upbeat about the prospects of being elected to parliament. Despite Ookeditse dismissing reports that he is eying the secretary general position, insiders argue that the position will be availed to him nevertheless.
Alternative favourite for the position is Vuyo Notha who is the party Deputy Secretary General. Notha has since assumed duties of the secretariat office on the interim basis. BPF politburo is expected to meet on 25th of January 2020, where the vacancy will be filled.
Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) big wigs have decided to cancel a retreat with the party legislators this weekend owing to increasing numbers of Covid-19 cases. The meeting was billed for this weekend at a place that was to be confirmed, however a communique from the party this past Tuesday reversed the highly anticipated meeting.
“We received a communication this week that the meeting will not go as planned because of rapid spread of Covid-19,” one member of the party Central Committee confirmed to this publication. The gathering was to follow the first of its kind held late last year at party Treasurer Satar Dada’s place.