Why Magosi travelled to Germany to meet CMB boss
The Director-General of the Directorate of Intelligence and Services (DIS), Brigadier Peter Magosi’s role in a case in which Capital Management Botswana (CMB) Director Tim Marsland is accused of fleecing millions of Pula belonging to Botswana Public Officers Pension Fund (BPOPF), emerged at Court recently.
The Magosi factor attracted the attention of Court of Appeal’s Justice Isaac Lesetedi when he presided over an appeal application brought by the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) recently. The appeal is against a recent judgement delivered by High Court Judge Boipuso Tshweneyagae, which discharged and acquitted Marsland and his former business alley RapulaOkaile of charges ranging from money laundering and theft.
Marsland and his former business partner RapulaOkaile were discharged of all criminal charges facing by High Court Judge Boipuso Tshweneyagae. They are accused of misappropriating part of the P477 million that CMB invested on behalf of BPOPF. Lesetedi raised concerns about the revelations made by Marsland in papers before the Court that contrary to claims by the prosecutions that he had attempted to flee to Germany to thwart his imminent extradition to Botswana, he was on his way to meet Magosi. Lesetedi asked Marsland’s lawyer Gabriel Kanjabanga why Magosi had to meet Marsland in Germany instead of South Africa, a thousand miles away from the neighbouring country.
Initially, Kanjabanga said he had not been briefed about the reasons for the planned meeting in Germany. But pressed further by Lesetedi, Kanjabanga revealed that “Marsland had been invited to go to Germany to meet Magosi”. He added that “he learnt that they wanted to arrest him, and he was not aware that a warrant of arrest had been issued for his arrest.” But a seemingly unconvinced Lesetedi wondered if the extradition proceedings would not proceed in South Africa instead of travelling to Germany.
“What was going to be the maximum impact there in Germany?” asked Lesetedi. Kanjabanga said, “The impact was that it would not be easy for him to secure bail. And present him as a flight risk who can’t be granted bail…” Lesetedi also added that he was asking because arresting Marsland would still not bring the desired results because Botswana did not have an extradition treaty with Germany; why would the meeting meant to capture Marsland take place in a country that does not have an extradition treaty with Botswana.
Kanjabanga submitted that Marsland was not a flight risk. “The issue of him escaping to Germany; why would someone who wants to escape to Germany buy a return flight ticket,” said Kanjabanga. Marsland distanced himself from suggesting that he would flee to Germany in papers before the Court, describing it as false. He also denied having attempted to escape to Germany. Instead, he stated that at the time of his arrest, he “was en route to meet Mr Peter Magosi,” adding that he had no intentions whatsoever of fleeing anywhere.
In his founding affidavit, DPP Director Steven Tiroyakgosi says that Marsland was arrested in South Africa pursuant to a warrant of arrest issued in Botswana on 11th June, pending extradition to Botswana, the same warrant that the High Court Judge Tshweneyagae has set aside. “The setting aside of the warrant will prejudice other accused persons represented by Marsland, namely CMB, Capital Management Africa Emsite Pty Ltd that forms part of the offenders in the case and have not been acquitted in the judgement,” said Tiroyakgosi
He said Marsland would use this judgement to secure his liberation from custody in South Africa whilst awaiting extradition. “At the time of his arrest at OR Tambo International Airport, he attempted to flee the Republic of South Africa for Germany. If the matter is not stayed off, Mr Timothy Marsland will not stand trial in Botswana. He is likely to flee the Republic of South Africa to a country we do not have extradition relations with, for example, Germany, which he was running to at the time of his arrest.
The said attempted escape was after receipt of information of his impending arrest at the time,” said Tiroyakgosi. He added that “Mr Timothy Marsland has delayed his extradition hearing by postponing it several times for a year and in the meantime applying for his release.”
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Malawi appeals for help over Cyclone Freddy at PAP
As of yesterday evening, the death toll from the Cyclone in Malawi had risen from the initially reported 190 to 225 in a short period of time, over 20 000 people have been displaced, and the worst of fears are yet to come as the fatalities continue to mount. This was reported by a Malawi Member of Parliament attending the Pan African Parliament session in Midrand, South Africa, Hon Steven Mikiya.
Mikiya was giving a statement on behalf of Malawi as the ongoing Pan African Parliament in South Africa.
Mikiya said the Cyclone has wreaked the most havoc in our countryâ€™s Southern Region. â€śThe Southern Region, has been hardest hit with widespread heavy rains and strong winds. This caused a rapid rise in water levels and subsequent flooding. Meanwhile, power supply has been disrupted, roads blocked off and rendered impassable and mudslides have also been widely reported,â€ť he said.
He made a special appeal to the PAP:Â â€śWhere I come from, there is a parable which I would like to share with you which says, â€śmzako weniweni umamudziwa panthawi ya mavuto.â€ť Simply put, a friend in need is a friend indeed or put loosely, a person who helps at a difficult time is a friend you can rely on.â€ť
Mikiya continued: â€śYes! Misfortune has knocked on our door and left in its wake a trail of death and destruction that may take years to fully recover from. However, amidst these difficulties, I have every reason to believe that sometimes when you are in a dark place and think you have been buried, you have actually been planted. My belief, Mr. President, arises out of my faith in this gathering and out of the conviction that it is not coincidental that Cyclone Freddy hit Malawi and Mozambique while the delegations of both countries are here.â€ť
According to Mikiya, the level of destruction, the loss of life, property and the decimation of the entire fabric of established communities has been unprecedented. He noted that all this, is coming at a time when Malawi was starting to show signs of recovery from the deadly COVID-19 pandemic that also came hard on the heels of Cyclone Ana and Cyclone Gombe that left a similar trail of devastation and destruction in Malawi and neighbouring countries.
As of Sunday, this week, from the 12th of March, Malawi and Mozambique have been facing the devastating effects of Cyclone Freddy that made a landfall over Mozambique on Saturday the 11th and reached Malawi by Sunday the 12th of March.
The Malawi legislator said he has absolute faith in the Pan African Parliament, which he described as â€śa league of nations brought together by a shared ancestry, history, identity as well as our beloved continent which we inhabitâ€ť.
Meanwhile, Malawi President, Lazarus Chakwera, has declared a State of Disaster in the affected areas effectively appealing for local and international support for the affected families.
Mikiya appealed to the Pan African Parliament drawing â€śpositiveâ€ť inspiration from Europe which rallied around Turkey after the destructive earthquakes to bring the much-needed relief and humanitarian aid to the people of Turkey.
He said Africa should demonstrate to the world that the African Union and its Organs are not mere talk shows, but effective institutions which stand up when it matters most.
â€śAlone, it may take us a lifetime to fully recover, but together, in the Pan-Africanist spirit of Ubuntu, our lives and livelihoods will return to a semblance of normality in record time. This is the time to live by our operative mantra, â€śOne Africa, One Voice.â€ť Mikiya concluded.