Attorney representing dismissed members of the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) for engaging in ‘unlawful’ relationship, Duma Boko got his way this week when Acting Judge Zein Kebonang ordered for arrest and detention of BDF Commander, Lt Gen Placid Segokgo for contempt of court.
With rarely six months as BDF commander, Segokgo find himself on the other side of the law at the hands of the esteemed attorney who is also the opposition Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) leader Duma Boko. On the 18 of November this year, after the case has dragged for few years, the Judge delivered a verdict which vindicated the BDF and ordered for their reinstatement with immediate effect.
It appears the duo ‘love birds’ were never reinstated as per Justice Kebonang’s ground breaking judgement released recently at the High Court. The duo; Thabang Tlhapisang and Kozondu Cisquo Uariaua were fired from the BDF for contravening the military’s Policy on Fraternisation and Sexual Harassment that’s forbids love affairs between BDF cadres of the same and different rankings.
According to the court papers seen by Weekend Post, Ag. Justice Kebonang delivered the order on Friday (yesterday) upon hearing attorney Duma Boko for the applicants (Tlhapisang and Uariaua) and having read the documents filed of record. According to the order the commander of the BDF Segokgo is hereby found to be ion contempt of court’ s decision of the 18th November 2016.
“A warrant of arrest is hereby issued for the immediate arrest and detention of the commander of Botswana Defence Force (BDF) Lieutenant General Placid Segokgo,” Justice Kebonang ordered. The Acting Judge further ordered that the said Lieutenant General Placid Segokgo is to be detained with immediate effect for a period of 30 days.
“The police are hereby directed to carry out this order with immediate effect,” Judge Kebonang said while adding that the respondents (BDF) is to bear costs of the application on own attorney and client scale. However by the time of going for print, the BDF through their attorneys have argued in court against the order to arrest Segokgo.
They contended that the BDF Commander in chief and country President Lieutenant General Seretse Khama Ian Khama only have the powers as vested to him by the constitution to fire and reinstate commissioned officers. Therefore, they maintain he should be the one to reinstate the fired BDF cadres whom the court has called for their reinstatement.
Justice Kebonang arrived in the judicial arena with critics sceptical of his ability to deliver sound and independent judgements as he was seen emerging from the system particularly as his twin brother Sadique Kebonang is a cabinet minister in the government of the day. His call for arrest of the BDF commander is likely to face divergent reception from sectors in both government and elsewhere.
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.
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.
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.