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End of the road for Attorney General, Keetshabe

The tenure of office for the Attorney General (AG), Advocate Abraham Keetshabe will expire around July this year and the subject has hinted that his contract is not renewable, a matter that has sparked public interest on his next move and the succession politics within the Attorney General’s office.

Keetshabe was appointed Attorney General from the 1st of August 2017, and there are concerns that he has not really made a mark for himself as the AG as he was always forced to bow to undue political influence and pressure. In an interview with this publication, Keetshabe confirmed the end of his contract, but when asked about whether he will be hoping for a renewal, he could only say: “there were limits to my contract.” Minister Kagiso Mmusi was not available to shed further light to reports that Keetshabe’s contract is not renewable.

Like many of his peers, sources say Keetshabe was reduced to taking instructions instead of rendering advice as required by law and did not really enjoy his tenure to the fullest.  His office and that of the director of the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) have endured widespread criticism over pushing some questionable cases to the courts, denting their credibility as ministers and custodians of justice.

“It is not a secret that he connived with the DPP to prosecute some of these ridiculous cases before the courts, many of which are hanging by a thread,” said a highly placed source. The DPP who is under the administrative supervision of the Attorney General is permitted by law to consults the Attorney General on cases considered by the Attorney General to be of national importance.

Another weakness which insiders say could impede Keetshabe’s progress is his deep Christian faith which he throws at everybody. “You will remember how the issue of faith caused problems for the former Chief Justice of South Africa justice Mogoeng Mogoeng. In this profession Christian or religious fanaticism has far-reaching consequences and can be seen as incompetence,” said a close colleague who says Keetshabe is more of a prayer warrior and priest.

Cabinet Ministers for Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration, Kabo Morwaeng and Trade and Investment, Mmusi Kgafela recently warned both DPP and AG to make judicious decisions on matters concerning people’s liberties saying such often impose a lot of avoidable costs on the government and people’s reputations. Yet other observers say it has been difficult to dispense professional advice to the current regime due to the long intrusive and authoritative arm of the Directorate of Intelligence Services (DIS) which many of its stakeholders say is a bully.

The Law Society of Botswana spoke to this issue recently at the opening of the legal year, saying the government should tame the DIS against interfering with other agencies functions. The DIS, through its spokesperson, Edward Robert has since responded and claimed that the position of the Law Society may misdirect or misinform the public.

But some say Keetshabe has not stood up to defend his territory when under external attack and interference, “for instance, what was going through his mind when he drafted this controversial Criminal Investigations and Evidence Procedure Bill. What would have been the case had stakeholders not mounted serious protests. This shows that he is someone who does not ready to defend and protect civil liberties and would go at great length to appease his powers,” said another insider.

It is not known what Keetshabe’s next move could be; but some suggest that he may end up in the judiciary whereas some say he may be appointed to head any state institution. Whoever will succeed Keetshabe as the government advisor remains matter of guesswork for many. His second in command is Charles Gulubane who may be hoping for elevation, but it is not always given that the second in command will succeed his predecessor.


Keetshabe, is a practicing lawyer whose professional career began back in 1986 following his completion of legal studies at the University of Botswana and the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. Upon graduation Advocate Keetshabe joined the Judiciary as a junior magistrate; rising through the ranks to become the first Motswana to be appointed to the position of Chief Magistrate.

In 1996 Advocate Keetshabe left the magistracy on promotion to the position of Deputy Registrar & Master of the High Court, based initially at the Francistown High Court and later transferring to the Lobatse High Court. His main responsibilities then included administrative supervision of the work of magistrates and providing administrative support to both the High Court and Court of Appeal.

In 2004, Advocate Keetshabe joined the Attorney General’s Chambers as the Deputy Attorney General responsible for civil litigation affairs. In this capacity, he successfully represented the Government in a number of landmark cases that now provide legal precedent in this country.
From 2011-16, Advocate Keetshabe served from 2011 to 2016 as the General Counsel in Office of the President. Prior to his appointment as the new Attorney General he served as Director of Public Prosecution (DPP).


BTC launches the 3rd Francistown Marathon 2024 and handover proceeds to the 2nd Francistown Marathon beneficiaries

8th December 2023

Botswana Telecommunications Corporation Limited (BTC) has announced that its 3rd Francistown Marathon will be held on Saturday 20th April 2024 at Obed Itani Chilume Stadium in Francistown. The BTC Francistown Marathon is officially recognised by World Athletics and a Comrades Marathon Qualifier will offer race categories ranging from 42.2km, 21.1 km, 10km, 5km fun run, 5km peace run for children and has introduced a 5km and 10km categories for wheelchairs athletics.

BTC also used this opportunity to announce beneficiaries who received donations from proceeds made from the 2nd BTC Francistown Marathon that was held on April 23rd 203.  BTC donated a play area, plastic chairs and wooden tables for pupils worth a total of thirty eight thousand, one hundred and three pula, fifty thebe each (P38, 103.50) to Monarch Primary School, Tatitown Primary School, Mahube Primary School and Gulubane Primary School. Ditladi and Boikhutso clinics each received a donation of benches, television sets and 10, 000 litre water tanks worth thirty seven thousan, eight hundred and ninety eight pula (P 37, 898.00). Additionally, BTC also donated seventy thousand pula (P70,000.00) to their marathon technical partner, Francistown Athletics Club (FAC) which will be used for daily operations as well as to purchase equipment for the club.

The BTC Francistown Marathon aligns seamlessly with BTC’s corporate social investment programme, administered through the BTC Foundation. This programme is a testament to BTC’s dedication to community development, focusing on key areas such as health promotion. The marathon, now in its third year, not only promotes a healthy lifestyle but also channels all proceeds to carefully chosen charities as part of BTC’s commitment to impactful and sustainable projects.

Speaking at the launch, the BTC Managing Director Mr Anthony Masunga stated that the marathon underscores BTC’s commitment to community upliftment and corporate social investment. He stated that “the annual event which has been in existence since 2016, having taken a break due to the covid and other logistical issues, is instrumental to the economic upliftment of the city of Francistown”. He congratulated all the beneficiaries for having been nominated to receive the donations, adding that “the donation of proceeds from the 2023 marathon aims to highlight BTC’s commitment and heart for Batswana and our continued impact in the different industries”.

He further stated that through this marathon, “we demonstrate our steadfast commitment to having a good influence on our communities, this event is a manifestation of our dedication to promoting education and a healthier, more active society”.  He concluded by stating that “BTC looks forward to another successful marathon that will leave a lasting positive influence on the greater Francistown community and the country at large” he said.

Giving welcome remarks, the Councillor for Donga, Honourable Morulaganyi Mothowabarwa stated that “he is ecstatic that BTC is collaborating with the City of Francistown on yet another installment of the Marathon”. He continued to offer his support to BTC to enable this marathon to continue over the coming years, stating that the “CSI element is a welcome development that helps empower our communities”, he said.

The 3rd BTC Francistown Marathon is officially open for registrations and athletes may use the following platforms to register and pay; through Smega by dialling *173# and choosing opton 5, then choose Option 3 for the Francistown marathon, at any BTC store or by visiting the BTC website and clicking on the BTC Francistown Marathon and choosing the relevant options.


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Letsholo lauds President Masisi’s digitization in fight against corruption

8th December 2023

Thapelo Letsholo, Member of Parliament for Kanye North, delivered a moving speech at the United Nations International Anti-Corruption Day commemoration, praising President Dr. Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi’s digitalization initiative in the fight against corruption. Letsholo highlighted the importance of embracing digitalization in governance as a crucial step in curbing corrupt practices.

According to Letsholo, the implementation of digital systems in government services can significantly reduce direct interactions between citizens and officials, which often serve as fertile grounds for corruption. By minimizing these opportunities for illicit activities, the efficiency and transparency of public services can be enhanced. Letsholo pointed to Estonia’s success in digital governance as an example, where public services have become more transparent, accessible, and efficient.

The MP commended President Masisi’s commitment to digitalization and E-Governance, emphasizing that it aligns with global anti-corruption standards. He called for full support and active participation from all sectors to ensure the success of this initiative.

Letsholo also stressed the importance of improving detection methods and refining whistleblower laws to effectively combat corruption. He highlighted the unseen and unspoken facets of corruption as its lifelines, emphasizing the need for robust detection mechanisms and a system that encourages and protects whistleblowers.

Addressing the societal role in fighting corruption, Letsholo focused on the crucial role of everyday citizens and civil servants who often witness corrupt practices firsthand. He acknowledged the existing reluctance to report corruption due to the perceived risks of repercussions. To change this narrative, Letsholo advocated for creating an environment where staying silent is deemed more detrimental than speaking out. He called for a cultural shift where the potential benefits of exposing corruption outweigh the risks, ensuring that whistleblowers are protected and feel secure in coming forward.

Letsholo called for collective responsibility and action in creating a system that not only detects and reports corruption but also supports those who stand against it. He expressed hope that under President Masisi’s digitalization initiatives, the future of governance in Botswana will be characterized by integrity, transparency, and accountability. Letsholo’s speech resonated with the sentiments of hope and determination that permeated the commemoration, emphasizing the need for unity in the fight against corruption.

In summary, Letsholo lauded President Masisi’s digitalization initiative in the fight against corruption, highlighting its potential to curb corrupt practices, enhance efficiency and transparency in public services, and align with global anti-corruption standards. He emphasized the importance of improving detection methods, refining whistleblower laws, and creating an environment where speaking out against corruption is encouraged and protected. Letsholo called for collective responsibility and action in creating a future characterized by integrity, transparency, and accountability in governance.


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FaR property assets value clock P1.47 billion

6th December 2023

FaR Property Company (FPC) Limited, a property investment company listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange, has recently announced its exceptional financial results for the year 2023. The company’s property asset value has risen to P1.47 billion, up from P1.42 billion in the previous year.

FPC has a diverse portfolio of properties, including retail, commercial, industrial, and residential properties in Botswana, South Africa, and Zambia. The company owns a total of 186 properties, generating rental revenues from various sectors. In 2023, the company recorded rental revenues of P11 million from residential properties, P62 million from industrial properties, and P89 million from commercial properties. Overall, the company’s total revenues increased by 9% to P153 million, while profit before tax increased by 22% to P136 million, and operating profit increased by 11% to P139 million.

One notable achievement for FPC is the low vacancy rate across its properties, which stands at only 6%. This is particularly impressive considering the challenging trading environment. The company attributes this success to effective lease management and the leasing of previously vacant properties in South Africa. FPC’s management expressed satisfaction with the results, highlighting the resilience of the company in the face of ongoing macroeconomic challenges.

The increase in profit before tax can be attributed to both an increase in income and effective control of operating expenses. FPC managed to achieve these results with fewer employees, demonstrating the company’s efficiency. The headline earnings per linked unit also saw an improvement, reaching 26.92 thebe, higher than the previous year.

Looking ahead, FPC remains confident in its competitiveness and growth prospects. The company possesses a substantial land bank, which it plans to develop strategically as opportunities arise. FPC aims for managed growth, focusing on consumer-driven developments and ensuring the presence of supportive tenants. By maintaining this approach, the company believes it can sustainably grow its property portfolio and remain competitive in the market.

In terms of the macroeconomic environment, FPC noted that inflation rates are decreasing towards the 3% to 6% range approved by the Bank of Botswana. This is positive news for the company, as it hopes for further decreases in interest rates. However, the fluctuating fuel prices, influenced by global events such as the war in Ukraine and oil output reductions by Russia and other Middle Eastern countries, continue to impact businesses, including some of FPC’s tenants.

FPC’s property portfolio includes notable assets such as a shopping mall in Francistown with Choppies Hyper as the anchor tenant, Borogo Mall located on the A33 main road near the Kazungula ferry crossing, and various industrial and commercial properties in Gaborone leased to Choppies, Senn Foods, and Clover Botswana. The company also owns a shopping mall in Mafikeng and Rustenburg in South Africa.

The majority of FPC’s properties, 85%, are located in Botswana, followed by 12% in South Africa and 3% in Zambia. With its strong financial performance, competitive position, and strategic land bank, FPC is well-positioned for continued growth and success in the property market.









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