Former President Lt Gen Ian Khama has accused the leadership of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) of having an agenda against his protégé Tshephang Mabaila, who has been suspended from the party for five years, effectively barring him from contesting the Mogoditshane constituency under the ruling party.
Mabaila, who had won the party primaries for Mogoditshane constituency early this year, was suspended from the party in July, after being accused of having participated in a motion of no confidence tabled in parliament against President Masisi. Khama told this publication that the reasons advanced by the BDP in Mabaila’s case are baseless, blaming the party for failing to resolve the matter amicably. “I hear they are doing that because they believe he is my friend but that is not how democracy works. Their decisions shows that they have an agenda,” said Khama.
Last week the BDP resolved to uphold their judgement in a case where Mabaila, a parliamentary aspirant appealed his five year suspension from the party. On 5th October 2018, the BDP National Executive Committee slapped Mabaila with suspension for committing offences against the rules and regulations and General Code of Conduct of the party. In a move perceived as purging candidates supposedly linked with Khama by Masisi leadership, Mabaila found himself at the receiving end.
In a letter dated August 7th 2018, Masisi wrote that reference is made to the above subject matter and “your utterances to Hon Dr Alfred Madigele and Sethomo Lelatisitswe on 10th July 2018 and letters addressed to the secretary general from the branch secretary dated 3rd December 2017 and 2nd August 2018”.The BDP President wrote that, it is alleged that Mabaila who is Mogoditshane constituency candidate has committed offences against the rules and regulations and General Code of Conduct of the ruling party.
The letter further said some of the offences listed include behaving in a grossly disorderly and unruly manner that might bring the party name into disrepute contrary to General Code of Conduct number 11 and sowing seeds of discord in the party, using regionalism, tribalism or factionalism contrary to General Code of Conduct number 6. Another offence Mabaila faced was contemptuous behaviour towards BDP leadership and other members contrary to General Code of Conduct number 7.
“As a party member you were obliged to abide by the constitution, rules and regulations of the party, and expected to promote the philosophy, policies and programmes as stated particularly in Article 14 sub- section 1 and 2 thereof. After the suspension Tshepang Mabaila wrote to the party President Masisi appealing his suspension from the party. In a letter dated 22nd November 2018, Masisi wrote to Mabaila that reference is made to your appeal against the decision of the National Disciplinary Committee handed down to you on the 5th October 2018.
“The Final Disciplinary Committee sat on the 22nd November 2018 to consider your appeal. After careful consideration of all the facts that were put before the committee, the committee has decided to uphold the judgement and sentence as handed out by the National Disciplinary Committee in its entirety”, reads the letter. After losing his appeal Mabaila has this week made it official that he will contest Mogoditshane as an independent candidate come 2019. Mabaila is busy working with his BDP campaign team in Mogoditshane to lobby more people to vote for Mabaila.
As it stands, the BDP has no candidate in Mogoditshane and elections are next year placing Mabaila as a threat to whoever is going to be picked. “I am a diehard BDP member, if I win and they invite me back to the party I will accept the invitation”, said Mabaila. In Mabaila’s suspension letter Masisi said he is determined that this is one of the exceptional circumstances in which he should exercise the powers conferred upon him as party president as contemplated by Article 34.1.6 of the BDP constitution and consequently suspend Mabaila with immediate effect as a member of the party.
“For the entire period of your suspension, you shall cease to enjoy your rights and privileges as a member of the party as outlined in Article 13 of the BDP constitution. Finally you are directed to handover to the party all property and assets belonging it the party in your possession with immediate effect.”
Botswana Police Service (BPS) has indicated concern about the ongoing trend where the general public falls victim to criminals purporting to be police officers.
According to BPS Assistant Commissioner, Dipheko Motube, the criminals target individuals at shopping malls and Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) where upon approaching the unsuspecting individual the criminals would pretend to have picked a substantial amount of money and they would make a proposal to the victims that the money is counted and shared in an isolated place.
“On the way, as they stop at the isolated place, they would start to count and sharing of the money, a criminal syndicate claiming to be Criminal Investigation Department (CID) officer investigating a case of stolen money will approach them,” said Motube in a statement.
The Commissioner indicated that the fake police officers would instruct the victims to hand over all the cash they have in their possession, including bank cards and Personal Identification Number (PIN), the perpetrators would then proceed to withdraw money from the victim’s bank account.
Motube also revealed that they are also investigating a case in which a 69 year old Motswana woman from Molepolole- who is a victim of the scam- lost over P62 000 last week Friday to the said perpetrators.
“The Criminal syndicate introduced themselves as CID officers investigating a case of robbery where a man accompanying the woman was the suspect.’’
They subsequently went to the woman’s place and took cash amounting to over P12 000 and further swindled amount of P50 000 from the woman’s bank account under the pretext of the further investigations.
In addition, Motube said they are currently investigating the matter and therefore warned the public to be vigilant of such characters and further reminds the public that no police officer would ask for bank cards and PINs during the investigations.
Botswana Congress Party (BCP) leadership walked out of Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting this week on account of being targeted by other cooperating partners.
UDC meet for the first time since 2020 after previous futile attempts, but the meeting turned into a circus after other members of the executive pushed for BCP to explain its role in media statements that disparate either UDC and/or contracting parties.
The Director General of the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crimes (DCEC), Tymon Katlholo’s spirited fight against the contentious transfers of his management team has forced the Office of the President to rescind the controversial decision. However, some insiders suggest that the reversal of the transfers may have left some interested parties with bruised egos and nursing red wounds.
The transfers were seen by observers as a badly calculated move to emasculate the DCEC which is seen as defiant against certain objectionable objectives by certain law enforcement agencies – who are proven decisionists with very little regard for the law and principle.