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Minister Kwape is lying to you – Baaitse‘s letter to UN

health Minister Dr. Lemogang Kwape

Following the government’s contentious response to the United Nations Special Rapporteur for extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions (UNSR), businessman, Shadrack Baaitse has countered the information concerning his matters though a letter to the UNSR in which he details what he terms a string of lies by Minister Dr Lemogang Kwape.

In his letter, Baaitse says Kwape is lying when he says on the 3rd of November 2020, an armed robbery case was reported in Kumakwane involving a black station wagon Land Cruiser. “I have noted with great concern that Mr Kwape’s response carries a huge weight of falsified and fabricated information.

Firstly, there was NO reported armed robbery case on the 3rd November 2020 in Kumakwane involving a black Station Wagon Land Cruiser. The truth is that on the 27th October 2020 an armed robbery case was reported to have taken place in Kumakwane involving a Security systems cash in transit Ghanzi bound vehicle at or around 5AM. It is reported that 6 suspects overtook the cash in transit vehicle using a Ford Wild track (Double Cab) and made a U-turn facing Gaborone and started firing at the Cash in transit vehicle.”

Baaitse says “I must emphasize that this report was confirmed by Kweneng District Officer Commanding No: 11 Senior Superintendent Modise Gabatshwane. I have noted that Mr Kwape has deliberately lied to the special rapporteur to cover the brutality and gruesome acts the DIS has continued to carry out on what they call Politically Exposed Persons (PEP) such as myself and others who are deemed to be Masisi and Magosi critics.

There was NEVER a black station wagon Land Cruiser reported to be involved in an armed robbery case in Kumakwane on the 3rd November 2020 as Mr Kwape claims. This a plan to discredit my report which statement I gave to the Botswana Police Services in Serowe Police Station that the DIS planned my demise and tried to use the Botswana Police after several failed attempts by the DIS on trying to arrest me, pin me down (as Mr Peter Magosi has vowed) and do me harm as they warned me on the 18th September 2018 just because I am loyal to former President Khama.”

At point number 10 of his letter, where he concern himself with why he did not pursue the DIS threat to kill further, Baaitse narrates:

“As mentioned in the above paragraphs, I found no reason to lodge any further complaint to anyone or any state security agency save to say I have been filing reports and furnishing them to other organizations abroad. This is because the current regime under Mr Masisi and Magosi have deviated from the democratic pillars as demonstrated by several series of events and many high court judgements and no action is ever taken to pursue such reports and complaints.

My first unprecedented encounter with the current DIS was on the 18th September 2018 where I was detained in DIS Sebele office for over 4 hours where I was questioned about my relationship with former President Khama and former Director General Dis Colonel Isaac Kgosi whom I worked under during my time in the Botswana Defence force since I reported directly to them then. I reported such to the DIS Director General in his office in person but he has never gotten back to me save that he told me that there are certain politicians who are busy trying to destroy my name and he will sort them out for me”

He continued that Magosi “further asked me to work cooperatively with them and convince former President Khama to hand Isaac Kgosi over to them so that former President Khama could live his life freely. In that meeting Mr Magosi also said he is very much willing to assist me the current Botswana Unified Revenue Services Prevailing Securities Tax liability and he will instruct Mr Kaone Molapo to rectify the same if I agree to work with them the same way he has assisted Mr Tshephang Mabaila whose case was even worse since he had a criminal case.

He further disclosed that on the 3rd April 2019, he and Ms Marathe the who was then in the Botswana Police Services landed in Kang airstrip where he met my Prevailing Securities employees and as they complained to Ms Marathe about my whereabouts, he, Mr Magosi told Ms Dinah Marathe that she should not worry since he is in constant communications with me. It is therefore to my shock that Mr Kwape’s response continues to demonstrate the dishonesty of the Masisi regime as they continue to lie about facts that are very much available in public domain.”

The letter continues: “I must further state that I am disappointed in the manner the Masisi regime conducts itself ranging from fabricating information as they have done here in my case and many others such as the Butterfly case and Isaac Kgosi arrest, the list is endless.

We live in fear for our lives, we are literally ex-communicated from our loved ones, my family has been subjected to constant surveillance, my businesses have been subjected to discrimination and backlisting by the current Government and her parastatals, including falsified tax liabilities using the draconic pay now and complain later tax act as demonstrated by court papers.”

Baaitse further says it has been reported that Mr Magosi and Mr Masisi have also gone to an extent of lobbying 3 court of appeal judges to overturn certain high court judgements including my Prevailing Securities / BURS case since they embarrassed the State and such judges have been prepared to preside over those appeal cases and turn them down.

“This information came to a close Court of Appeal Judge whom I consider a sister and a very close associate of Mr Magosi who shared her serious concern as to what evil I have done to Mr Magosi such that he is so seriously determined to destroy my life and acting jointly with Mr Kaone Molapo of the BURS to pin me to an 85 million Pula false Tax liability. This is just one of the indications that several Security agencies and other institutions such as the BURS, the DISS, the DPP, 3 or 4 members of the Judiciary have deviated from democratic practices, the rule of law, human rights practices and violated people’s constitutional rights, wrote Baaitse

I was never interviewed as alleged by Kwape

According to Kwape, following linkages to the robbery, “Mr Baaitse was subjected to an interview and it was established in the interview that

he knew nothing about the robbery.”

To this Baaitse says, wrote that he challenges Kwapa to produce evidence.

“I must retaliate that I was never subjected to any interview, the two police officers asked for my national identity and upon noticing my identity they then contacted their superiors and recorded my details and mobile numbers and simply told me to go. The Botswana Police acted in theirprofessional duties as I stated above and did realize I was deliberately implicated,” wrote Baaitse.

He continued the allegations here are false, “I have never been subjected to any interview neither by any Government official, the Botswana Police nor Mr Kwape’s Ministry or any. In a Democratic setup, where one’s life is under threat as I have demonstrated with several reports including reporting to the Director General of the DIS Peter Fana Magosi, one has to be called for an interview by the concerned party, however, in my case I have never been asked to provide details apart from the letters I wrote to several organizations including the United Nations Secretary General, African Union, SADC and other human rights organizations abroad. I want to challenge Mr Kwape to provide the details of such interview and persons involved.”

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Details emerge in suspected Batswana poachers in Namibia

28th June 2022
suspected Motswana poacher arrested

New details about a suspected Motswana poacher arrested in Namibian and his accomplice who is on the run were revealed when the suspect appeared in court this week.

The Motswana Citizen who was shot and wounded by Namibia’s anti poaching unit is facing criminal charges under criminal case number (CR NO 10/06/2022) which was registered at the Divundu Police Station in the Mukwe constituency of the Kavango East Region on 10 June 2022.

It is alleged that a patrol team laid an ambush after discovering a giraffe’s fresh carcass in a snare wire and hanging biltong.  According to the Charge Sheet, the suspect Djeke Dihutu, aged 40 years, is charged with contravening and transgressions of Nature Conservation Ordinance andcontravening Immigration Act 07 in Mahango Wildlife Core Area, Bwabwata National Park. Dihutu’s first court appearance was on the 17th of June 2022, Rundu and it was postponed to the 07 July 2022. He is currently hospitalized in hospital under Police Guards.

Commenting on this latest development, the Namibian Lives Matter Movement National Chairperson Sinvula Mudabeti applauded the Namibian Anti Poaching Unit for its compliance with what it called the universal instrument on the Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials adopted by the United Nations General Assembly resolution 34/169.

“We are aware that the duties of the police carry a great deal of risk, but our police has shown that they have a moral calling and obligation to protect even foreigners suspected of serious crimes on Namibian soil,” said Mudabeti.

According to him, whereas the Botswana Police Service, the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) and Directorate of Intelligence Service (DIS) have “very low moral ethics, integrity, accountability and honesty, the Namibian security agencies has shown very high levels of ethical leadership in the discharge of their duties even under duress.”

He said Namibian’s anti poaching unit has exercised one very important value, that is, the use of force only when it is reasonable and necessary. Mudabeti said this is in harmony with international best practices as enshrined in Article 2 of the UN instrument on law enforcement conduct, “In the performance of their duty, law enforcement officials shall respect and protect human dignity and maintain and uphold the human rights of all persons.

Our police have protected the life of a Botswana poacher and accorded him dignity, which is very foreign to our Botswana counterparts,” he said. He said article 3 of the same instrument above, calls for Law enforcement officials to use force only when strictly necessary and to the extent required for the performance of their duty.

“This provision emphasizes that the use of force by law enforcement officials should be exceptional; while it implies that law enforcement officials may be authorized to use force as is reasonably necessary under the circumstances for the prevention of crime or in effecting or assisting in the lawful arrest of suspected offenders, no force going beyond that was used by our Police,” he said.

Furthermore, Mudabeti said, whereas the universally accepted norm of the law of proportionality ordinarily permits the use of force by law enforcement, it is to be understood that such principles of proportionality in no case should be interpreted to authorize the use of force which is disproportionate to the legitimate objective to be achieved.

“Our police have used force proportional to the situation at hand. Great work indeed! Article 6 urges law enforcement officials to ensure the full protection of the health of persons in their custody and, in particular, shall take immediate action to secure medical attention whenever required,” he said.

Mudabeti said the Botswana poacher was immediately taken to hospital whereas the Nchindo brothers who were captured on Namibian soil, beaten, tortured and executed while pleading to be taken to the hospital we left to die.

“The Namibian Doctor gave evidence in court that Sinvula Munyeme’s lungs showed signs of life (during the autopsy) and that he could have survived if he was accorded immediate medical assistance in time but was left to die while BDF soldiers looked and possibly ignored his cry for help,” he said.

Mudabeti said unlike in Botswana where there are no clear separation of powers between the BDF, Botswana Police Service, Department of Intelligence and their Directorate of Public Prosecutions,” we have a system that allows for checks and balances and allows our people and foreigners who are found on the wrong side of the law to be accorded the right to a fair trial.”

He said Botswana citizens are treated with dignity when apprehended in Namibia and not assaulted, tortured and executed. “We are a civilized country that respects international law in dealing with non-Namibian criminals. The Namibian Police have not mistreated the Botswana poacher but have given him the benefit of the doubt by allowing due processes of the law to be followed,” he said.

He added that, “We are a peace loving nation that has not repaid Botswana by the evil that Botswana has done to Namibia by killing more than 37 innocent and unarmed Namibians by the trigger happy BDF.” He concluded that, “Our acts of mercy in arresting Botswana citizens should never be mistaken for cowardice.”

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Gov’t, Unions clash over accommodation

28th June 2022
accomodation

The government has reportedly taken a decision to terminate provision of pool housing and subsidy for civil servants as it attempts to trim the public service wage bill.

This emerges in a dispute that is currently before the Labour Office headquarters lodged by unions representing thousands of civil servants across the country. This publication understands that the decision to cease providing pool housing and rental subsidy for public officers is part of proposals that government put on the table during its negotiations with public service unions in order for it to adjust salaries.

A letter from Labour Office addressed to the Directorate of Public Service Management (DPSM) shows that the directorate is cited as the First Respondent. The letter is titled, “Dispute lodged: Cessation of provision of pool housing and subsidy for pubic officers.”

“This serves as a notification and requirement to a mediation hearing,” the letter informed DPSM. According to the letter, the Botswana Teachers Union (BTU), Botswana Sectors of Educators Trade Unions (BOSETU) Botswana Nurses Union (BONU) and Botswana Land Board &Local Authorities &Health workers Union (BLLAHW) who lodged the complaint are cited as the Applicant.

“Please come for mediation hearing. The hearing will be conducted by Mr Lebang. The hearing is scheduled for date/time 29th June 2022, 09: 00HOURS at Block 8 District Labour Office, Gaborone. Please bring all relevant documents,” reads the letter in part.

According to a document described as a proposal paper on the negotiations on salaries and other conditions of employment of public officers by the employer (government), the government did not only propose to stop providing accommodation to civil servants but also put a number of proposals on the table.

The proposal papers states that the negotiations (which have since been concluded) cover three government financial years; 2022/23, 2023/24 and 2024/25. The government proposed an across the board salary adjustments as follows; 3% for the financial year 2022/23 effective 1st April 2022, across the board salary adjustment of 3.5% for the financial year 2023/24 effective 1st April 2023 subject to performance of the economy and across the board salary adjustment of 4% for the financial year 2024/25 effective 1st April 2024 subject to performance of the economy.

The government also proposed phasing out of retention and attractive (Scarce Skills) Allowance with a view to migration towards clean pay, renegotiate and set new timelines for all outstanding issues contained in the Collective Labour Agreement, executed by the employer and trade unions on the 27th August 2019, to ensure proper sequencing, alignment and proper implementation.
The government also proposed to freeze public service recruitment for the 2022/23 financial year and withdraw the financial equivalence of P500 million attached to vacancies from Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs).

Another proposal included phasing out of commuted overtime allowance and payment of overtime in accordance with the law and review human resource policies during the financial year 2022/23, 2023/24 and 2024/25.

The government argued that its proposals were premised on affordability and sustainability adding that it was important to underscore that the review of salaries and conditions of service for public officers was taking place at a time when there were uncertainties both in the global and domestic economies.

“Furthermore there is need to ensure that any collective labour agreement that is concluded does not breach the fiscal deficit target of 4% of GDP,” the proposal paper stated. The proposal paper further indicated that beyond salary adjustments, the Government of Botswana is of the view that a more comprehensive consideration “must be taken on the issue of remuneration in the public service by embracing principles such as total rewards compensation which involves taking a fully comprehensive and holistic approach to how our organization compensates employees for the work.”

The proposal paper also noted that, “Clearly, the increase in salaries and changes to other conditions of service which have monetary consequences will further increase the proportion of the budget taken by salaries, allowances and other monetary based conditions of services.”

“The consequential effect would be a reduction of the portion that can be used for other recurrent budget needs (e.g. maintenance of assets, consumable supplies such as medicines and books) and for development projects,” the proposal states.

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BPF NEC probes Serowe squabbles

28th June 2022
BPF

Opposition Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) National Executive Committee will in no time investigate charges party members worked with the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) membership to tip the scales in favour of the latter for Serowe Sub-council Chairmanship in exchange for deputy seat in a dramatic 11th hour gentleman’s deal, leaving the ruling party splinter under the political microscope.

In a spectacular Sub-council election membership last Thursday, the ruling BDP’s Lesedi Phuthego beat Atamelang Thaga with 14 votes to 12 for Serowe Sub-council Chairmanship coveted seat and subsequently the ruling party’s councilor Bernard Kenosi withdrew his candidacy in the final hour for the equally admired deputy chair paving the way for Solomon Dikgang of BPF, seen as long sealed ‘I scratch your back and you scratch mine’ gentleman’s agreement between the contenders.

Both parties entered the race with a tie of votes torn between 12 councillors each, translating for election race that will go down to the wire definitely. But that will not be the case as two BPF councilors shifted their allegiance to the ruling party during the first race for Chairmanship held in a secret ballot and no sooner was the election concluded then the ruling party answered back by withdrawing its candidacy for the deputy chair position to give BPF’s Dikgang the post on a silver platter unopposed.

BPF councilor Vuyo Notha confirmed the incident in an interview on Wednesday, insisting the party NEC was determined to “investigate the matter soon”. “During the race for the Chairmanship, two more BPF voted for alongside the ruling party membership. It was clear Dikgang voted alongside the BDP as immediately after the vote for Chairmanship was concluded, Kenosi withdraw his candidacy to render Dikgang unopposed as a payback,” Notha added.

As for the other vote, Makolo ward councilor will not be drawn for the identity preferring instead to say: “BPF NEC will convene all the councilors to investigate the matter soon and we will take from there.” Notha will also not be drawn to conclude may be the culprit councilors could have defected to the ruling party silently.

“If they are no longer part of us they should say so and a by-election be called,” was all he could say. As it stands now, the law forbids sitting Councilors and Parliamentarians from crossing the floor to another party as to do so will immediately invite for a new election as dictated by the law. Incumbent politicians will therefore dare not venture for the unknown with a by-election that could definitely cost their political life and certainly their full benefits.

Notha could also not be dragged to link the culprit councilors actions to BPF Serowe region Chairperson Tebo Thokweng who has silently defected to the ruling party and currently employed by the party businessman and former candidate for Serowe West Moemedi Dijeng as PRO for the highly anticipated cattle abattoir project in Serowe.

“As for Thokweng he has not resigned from the party but from the region’s chairmanship,” he said. WeekendPost investigations suggest Thokweng is the secret snipper behind the recruitment drive of the votes for the elections and is determined to tear the party dominance in Serowe and the neighbouring villages asunder including in Palapye going forward.

This publication’s investigations also show BPF’s Radisele and UDC’s Mokgware/Mogome councilors are under the radar of investigations for the votes-themselves associated with the workings and operations of Thokweng.

“NEC will definitely leave no stone unturned with their investigations to get into the bottom of the matter. Disciplinary actions will follow certainly,” Notha concluded, underscoring the need to toe the party line to set a good precedent. For the youthful councilor, the actions of his peers has set a wrong precedent which has to be dealt with seriously to deter future culprits.

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