Chairman of Ntlo Ya Dikgosi (NYD) Kgosi Puso Gaborone has bluntly told Assistant Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Kgotla Autlwetse that they want a ministry that would specifically address issues of Bogosi and culture. This was one of the pointed demands made by Dikgosi this week.
The request follows a trail of others the traditional leaders have asked for especially with respect to their powers. Dikgosi had serious introspection meeting that lasted for two days dubbed Bogosi Pitso under the theme, “Bogosi Re Ya Kae.” The gathering apart from introspecting Bogosi institution also looked at adoption of a five-year strategy seeking to transform an ailing establishment. Making the deliberations, Kgosi Gaborone told Autlwetse that if the government is holding Bogosi at the highest regard, it should first create Ministry of Bogosi and Traditional Affairs.
“Merero [consultations] should be under one roof; culture should be taken to where Bogosi is. I am advocating for one thing; Ministry of Bogosi and Traditional Affairs,” Kgosi Gaborone said to the ululation of other Dikgosi who thronged the Pitso. He argued that as an institution they don’t have a budget to carry out a number of initiatives they should do, adding that even the national vision of 2016 did not recognise them.
“We can build things like Peace and democracy foundation. Bogosi should be more cosmopolitan that would be more inclusive. We want to protect and build this nation, we don’t destroy. Let’s package Bogosi properly,” he pleaded. Kgosi Maruje Masunga also agreed with Kgosi Gaborone: “There should be creation of Bogosi Ministry,” he said. The same was echoed in an interview by both Kgosi Kgari of Bakwena and Oscar Mosielele of Bakgatla-ba-ga-Mmanaana.
Most of ‘Marara’ as Dikgosi are referred to, wholly endorsed the idea of having their own ministry saying they are compromised under the current set-up. “We are confused as to whether we fall under Presidential Affairs ministry, Ministry of Youth Sports and Culture Development as well as Defence Justice and Security so all these should come under one roof. We are the only institution with an act but with no Ministry,” Kgosi Matlapeng from Tlokweng added.
While the plan has been discussed for a long time now, Dikgosi are confused as to who should lead them should they succeed. Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development Deputy Permanent Secretary Col. Duke Masilo is earmarked to lead the ministry should it come to being. On the other side, others want Kgosi Gaborone or Kgosi Maruje Masunga to lead them should the ministry come to being. But one thing Dikgosi concur on is-the ministry should not be led by a politician.
“We should be led by a Kgosi, someone who understand tsamaiso ya jone not barutegi or politicians. It is better Kgosi reprimands the other than someone else reprimanding it. Remember what Minister Butale did to Kgosi Seepapitso when he suspended him from Bogosi, we don’t want that,” one Kgosi Maforaga of Palapye told this paper.
BOGOSI DEMANDS ‘BETTER’ CONDITIONS OF SERVICE
After making their case clear on their own ministry, the tribal CEO’s as Gaborone referred to them made more demands in relation to their conditions of service. At the top of their demands they want some clauses in the Bogosi Act to be discarded especially in relation to political interference. Section 13 and 15 provide for the removal and de-recognition of Kgosi and this rub Magosi the wrong way. “Bogosi is in trouble you want to destroy the institution while politicians stay in office forever, we should do away with the clause that removes Dikgosi from office,” Maruje said.
They also say Minister should not supervise them but the government should establish the Royal council. “Ministers should not interfere with Bogosi; this act is used to harass us. There should be council that would discipline Dikgosi not ministers,” said Masunga who his colleagues call firebrand. He added; “abuse of power is rampant and corruption has escalated, this is so because of gaps left by Dikgosi. Again if a Kgosi does something he is reprimanded while nothing happens to politicians who does the same, this is double standards.”
In addition Dikgosi spoke in one voice – they want state of the art Kgotla offices and are also demanding same automobiles like the ones used by ministers. “How do you put Dikgosi in a quantum while ministers ride BMW 7 series? Who are the leaders of this country?” he rhetorically asked. For the five year strategy to materialise the traditional leaders say, they need security equivalent to those given to judges as they do the same toil of solving disputes. Private and personal secretaries must also be availed to the leaders to do their job diligently.
“We also need diplomatic passports, if you can avail to athletes and MPs why don’t you give Dikgosi the same,” he concluded his presentation on the Dikgosi condition of service. The ministry will look at the demands before determining whether it is feasible to implement them. This was the first time Pitso was called since 2015.
Slumber Tsogwane, the chairman of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP), has effectively ursurped Mpho Balopi’s functions of secretary general. He has also taken over the preparations for the party’s national congress, which is scheduled to be held in August.
The role of the secretary general is to oversee the activities of the party, and according to its constitution, he or she is the accounting officer. Throughout his career, Balopi has been the link between the various structures of the party, including the central committee and sub committees. However, since he has been replaced by Tsogwane, Balopi has become an onlooker.
The Director General of the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) Tymon Katholo has revealed why he took a decision to engage private lawyers against the State. The DCEC boss engaged Monthe and Marumo Attorneys in his application to interdict the Directorate of Intelligence and Security (DIS) from accessing files and dockets in the custody of the corruption busting agency.
In his affidavit, Katholo says that by virtue of my appointment as the Director General of the DCEC, he is obliged to defend the administration and operational activities of the DCEC. He added that, “I have however been advised about a provision in the State Proceedings Act which grants the authority of public institution to undertake legal proceedings to the Attorney General.” Katholo contends that the provision is not absolute and the High Court may in the exercise of its original jurisdiction permit such, like in this circumstance authorise such proceedings to be instituted by the DCEC or its Director General.
Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) has gone through transformation over the years, with new faces coming and going, but some figures have become part and parcel of the furniture at Tsholetsa House. From founding in 1962, BDP has seen five leaders changing the baton during the party’s 60 years of existence. The party has successfully contested 12 general elections, albeit the outcome of the last polls were disputed in court.
While party splits were not synonymous with the BDP for the better part of its existence, the party suffered two splits in the last 12 years; the first in 2010 when a Barataphathi faction broke ranks to found the now defunct Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD). The Barataphathi faction was in the main protesting the ill-treatment of then recently elected party secretary general, Gomolemo Motswaledi, who had been suspended ostensibly for challenging the authority of then president, Ian Khama.