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Namibian refugees urged to register for repatriation

Namibian refugees, currently housed at the Dukwi Refugee Camp situated some 160km northwest of Francistown have been urged to register their names with the relevant authorities in preparation for their repatriation.

Close to 900 refugees from Botswana northwestern neighbour in Namibia have been in the country since 1998. Between 1998 and 1999, a number of Namibians, mainly from the border area of Caprivi Strip, fled into Botswana in search of sanctuary.

The Namibians were fleeing secessionist tensions in the northern Caprivi Strip south in to Botswana. At the time, the asylum seekers claimed in interviews with Botswana government and United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) officials that they were being harassed by a Namibian military security unit sent into the area.

Fast forward to today, the government and UNHCR are in agreement that the situation in Namibia has vastly improved and it is time for the refugees to return to their country of origin under the voluntary repatriation exercise.

Early this year, the governments of Botswana and Namibia alongside UNHCR officials held a tripartite mission in Francistown and set December 31st 2015 as the last day for the all Namibian refugees to have vacated the country.

But just three months before the set deadline, WeekendPost has been reliably informed that very few Namibians are coming forward to register for voluntary repatriation. And last Thursday, officials from the Ministry of Defense, Justice and Security had to hold a meeting with refugees.

Dukwi Refugee Camp’s Settlement Commandant Bonang Batekele confirmed that he expressed worry that the refugees are not showing up to register despite the fact that it is only three months to reach the deadline during the meeting.

Batekele informed the refugees that they are not filing up the exemption forms. He said the settlement commandant office distributed at least 600 forms almost two months ago but only twenty have filled and submitted.

“I can confirm that the meeting was held last Thursday (25 September 2015) and the main issue was to remind the Namibian refugees that time is ticking towards the cessation of their refugee status in Botswana,” confirmed Batekele.

He added: “I urged them to make the use of the opportunity opened to refugees. Come the 1st of January 2016, the refugees shall no longer be recognized and all the assistance they are receiving now will cease.”

A Protection Officer with the UNHCR based at Dukwi Refugee Camp, Punchoe expressed happiness that the government has smoothly done every process in regard to the refugees’ cessation clause.

He informed the refugees that packages for voluntary repatriation remain in place only for those who will repatriate.

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Gov’t shy to shame failing ministers

22nd February 2021

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 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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