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BDF soldiers query delayed promotions

Some junior members of the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) have cried foul over delayed promotions following the elevation of their senior counterparts some months ago.

WeekendPost has gathered that it has been a while now since the promotions of some most senior members of the BDF to the lucrative ranks.

“It is a norm if not culture in the BDF that after senior officers have been promoted then after a month or so follows the junior officers’ promotions,” a source in the lower ranking BDF Military Intelligence who preferred anonymity for fear of being victimized told this publication.

He continued: “but to our surprise when our turn for promotions comes, we are told if we do not pass the physical training test we are not going to be promoted.”

‘‘We do agree that both physical and mental fitness for all the soldiers is necessary but remember some soldiers are handicapped since they got injured in the line of duty.’’

According to the soldier, if they do not qualify for promotions because they cannot pass physical training test how then do they qualify for military operations including anti-poaching exercises.

“They are even talking about 10 year intervals to the next rank? I mean really? Ke mang wa bone oo tsereng ngwaga tse 10 mo ranking? (Who amongst them spent 10 years in the same rank without being promoted?)

Now the question, according to the BDF MI cadre, is how then were they promoted since most of them if not all, do not do physical training let alone the issue of passing it, “we know some of them are sickling, alcoholics and gamblers etc.”

“They cannot run at least a kilometer, but how dare they come out and say if you don’t pass physical training you cannot be promoted.”

Curiously, Lieutenant Colonel Fikani Machola from the BDF Directorate of Protocol and Public Affairs told Weekend Post in a brief response to enquiries on the issue that the matter is “internal.”

“Issues of staff promotions in the BDF are purely administrative and internal matters which cannot be discussed with the media in detail,” he hinted.
Notwithstanding, he insisted that the BDF promotions are done with due diligence and follow internal practices.  

Previously, in various public fora former BDF commander of ground forces and incumbent legislator of Mmankgodi/Manyana Pius Mokgware cautioned government against not providing low ranking soldiers with decent salaries and proper conditions of service citing it as a “security risk”.

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Gov’t shy to shame failing ministers

22nd February 2021
Morwaeng

Minister of Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration, Kabo Morwaeng together with Permanent Secretary to the President (PSP) Elias Magosi, this week refused to name and shame the worst performing Ministries and to disclose the best performing Ministries since beginning of 12th parliament including the main reasons for underperformance.

Of late there have been a litany of complaints from both ends of the aisle with cabinet members accused of providing parliament with unsatisfactory responses to the questions posed. In fact for some Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) backbenchers a meeting with the ministers and party leadership is overdue to address their complaints. Jwaneng-Mabutsane MP, Mephato Reatile is also not happy with ministers’ performance.

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Bokamoso, Gov’t in P10M womb removal suit

22nd February 2021
Bokamoso

Bokamoso Private Hospital is battling a P10 million legal suit for a botched fibroids operation which resulted in a woman losing an entire womb and her prospects of bearing children left at zero.

The same suit has also befallen the Attorney General of Botswana who is representing the Ministry of Health and Wellness for their contributory negligence of having the unlawful removal of a patient, Goitsemang Magetse’s womb.

According to the court papers, Magetse says that sometimes in November 2019, she was diagnosed with fibroids at Marina Hospital where upon she was referred to Bokamoso Private Hospital to schedule an appointment for an operation to remove the fibroids, which she did.

Magetse continues that at the instance of one Dr Li Wang, the surgeon who performed the operation, and unknown to her, an operation to remove her whole womb was conducted instead.
According to Magetse, it was only through a Marina Hospital regular check-up that she got to learn that her whole womb has been removed.

“At the while she was under the belief that only her fibroids have been removed. By doing so, the hospital has subjected itself to some serious delictual liability in that it performed a serious and life changing operation on patient who was under the belief that she was doing a completely different operation altogether. It thus came as a shock when our client learnt that her womb had been removed, without her consent,” said Magetse’s legal representatives, Kanjabanga and Associates in their summons.

The letter further says, “this is an infringement of our client‘s rights and this infringement has dire consequences on her to the extent that she can never bear children again”. ‘It is our instruction therefore, to claim as we hereby do, damages in the sum of BWP 10,000,000 (ten million Pula) for unlawful removal of client’s womb,” reads Kanjabanga Attorneys’ papers. The defendants are yet to respond to the plaintiff’s papers.

What are fibroids?

Fibroids are tumors made of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissue. They develop in the uterus. It is estimated that 70 to 80 percent of women will develop fibroids in their lifetime — however, not everyone will develop symptoms or require treatment.

The most important characteristic of fibroids is that they’re almost always benign, or noncancerous. That said, some fibroids begin as cancer — but benign fibroids can’t become cancer. Cancerous fibroids are very rare. Because of this fact, it’s reasonable for women without symptoms to opt for observation rather than treatment.

Studies show that fibroids grow at different rates, even when a woman has more than one. They can range from the size of a pea to (occasionally) the size of a watermelon. Even if fibroids grow that large, we offer timely and effective treatment to provide relief.

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Masisi warned against a sinking Botswana

22nd February 2021
Ndaba GAolatlhe

The Alliance for Progressives (AP) President Ndaba Gaolathe has said that despite major accolades that Botswana continues to receive internationally with regard to the state of economy, the prospects for the future are imperilled.

Delivering his party Annual Policy Statement on Thursday, Gaolathe indicated that Botswana is in a state of do or die, and that the country’s economy is on a sick bed. With a major concern for poverty, Gaolathe pointed out that almost half of Botswana’s people are ravaged by or are about to sink into poverty.  “Our young people have lost the fire to dream about what they could become,” he said.

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