Connect with us
Thursday, 18 April 2024

Kgafela takes ANC Gov’t head on


Since relocating to South Africa in 2012, Bakgatla paramount Chief, Kgafela Kgafela II who moved to Moruleng to protect his tribe’s wealth against his jilted uncle, Nnyalala Pilane, has been surviving on good Samaritans as he has not been receiving a salary for his upkeep.

This was confirmed by Kgafela’s spokesperson, Lebogang Phalafala Maname in an interview with this publication who said that following his spirited fight against Nnyalala’s deeply entrenched corruption, the King was still to gain access to Morafe’s financial facilities which Pilane had tried all in his power to keep Kgafela and Morafe far away from. But that is not all; Kgafela is accusing the African National Congress of being behind his tribe’s state of unrest saying they tolerate it because of their selfish interest.
[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”1,2,3″ ihc_mb_template=”1″ ]
The control of the affairs of the Bakgatla Ba Kgafela Traditional Council are under the Administrator appointed by the North West Premier as part of the key recommendations of the report on the Commission into Traditional Claims and Disputes of the Bakgatla Ba Kgafela in Moruleng.  Kgafela recently wrote a letter to premier informing him that efforts to secure a meeting with President Cyril Ramaphosa have failed. “We even requested an audience with the President so as to seek answers from the top leadership, but none has been availed,” Kgafela says in the letter.

He continues: “All our problems of Bakgatla stem from this one source, that the ANC government is failing Bakgatla by withholding performance of statutory & Constitutional obligations. The Premier is failing us. MEC for Traditional Affairs is failing us. COGTA is failing us. The Administrator is failing us because Government is not empowering him sufficiently with the needful.

Both he and the Forensic investigators struggle to make progress because relevant government officers either refuse or delay to provide vital documents from Baloyi Commission. SAPS is failing us. Hawks is failing us. NPA is failing us. SARS is failing us. The President is failing us. Meanwhile, amidst all these statutory failures of government, and refusal to address our BBK problems, our tribe loses billions of rand in damages each day since 1996.”

Kgafela says several Bakgatla, including him have personally heard Rre Nyalala Pilane speak freely about his ANC connections, and how he funds the party and politicians with tribal money. “He told me this in 2009-2011 whilst I was living in Botswana, unfamiliar with the dynamics of South Africa. When we became surprised, he said he was coerced by ANC factions to pay them, because if he didn’t oblige, his and BBK affairs would not progress. He said it was the South African way to do business – either you pay ANC factions or you struggle eternally, as we have experienced,” he wrote.

Taking the ANC head on, Kgafela said: “My tribe is tragically divided into multiple camps of crime and hatred due to these circumstances created by the ANC factions and government. Our people who stand for the truth and justice are permanently under threat of violence by Rre Nyalala Pilane and his hooligans.” He continued: “It seems as if all these horrors upon Bakgatla happen by design, in order to sustain a symbiotic relationship between ANC factions, Rre Nyalala Pilane and his hooligans, and make us fail in our duties towards the tribe, truth and justice.

We feel very unsafe in South Africa, when the police and government allow criminals to do as they please with our lives and property. Indeed, there is a strong public perception amongst Bakgatla here in South Africa and Botswana, that ANC government and some ANC factions support Nyalala Pilane. They break the law to keep him in power so that he may continue funding them with Bakgatla money, whilst harassing with violence everyone else who stands in his way.”

According to the Bakgatla leader, there is circumstantial evidence which reinforces perception of relations of Pilane and collusion with ANC which includes, amongst others:(a) The affidavits of Rre Ruthoane & Motlogelwa, combined with vigorous opposition to our mandamus by Government favoring Rre Nyalala Pilane;

(b) the visible public association of Rre Nyalala Pilane with senior ANC leadership and his participation in ANC public affairs; (c) the constant frustration BBK experiences against government organs to simply secure performance of statutory & constitutional obligations; (d) the fact that Rre Nyalala Pilane & Co still occupy the tribal office today, and still control BBK assets despite a Court interdict of 3rd September 2020, despite the fact that he is no longer Kgosi, and notwithstanding the formal presence of an Administrator;

(e) the fact that Rre Nyalala Pilane continues to impersonate a Kgosi whilst obstructing the lawful Kgosi, and committing a wide variety of offenses against Public Administration (Contempt of Court, perjury, obstruction of a public officer in performance of his duties, impersonation etc.) all in the face of police presence, and the mighty power of State;

(f) the fact that law enforcement organs (SAPS, Hawks, NPA) are refusing or neglecting to arrest and prosecute Rre Nyalala Pilane & Co for all those obvious commercial and other crimes conspicuously documented in the BDO Spencer forensic report, Papadakis forensic report, Serite forensic report, and Baloyi report, despite us having reported crime way back in 2012. “We wonder: How many more forensic and commission reports are required before action may be taken?” asked Kgafela.[/ihc-hide-content]


Nigerians, Zimbabweans apply for Chema Chema Fund

16th April 2024

Fronting activities, where locals are used as a front for foreign-owned businesses, have been a long-standing issue in Botswana. These activities not only undermine the government’s efforts to promote local businesses but also deprive Batswana of opportunities for economic empowerment, officials say. The Ministry of Trade and Industry has warned of heavy penalties for those involved in fronting activities especially in relation to the latest popular government initiative dubbed Chema Chema.

According to the Ministry, the Industrial Development Act of 2019 clearly outlines the consequences of engaging in fronting activities. The fines of up to P50,000 for first-time offenders and P20,000 plus a two-year jail term for repeat offenders send a strong message that the government is serious about cracking down on this illegal practice. These penalties are meant to deter individuals from participating in fronting activities and to protect the integrity of local industries.

“It is disheartening to hear reports of collaboration between foreigners and locals to exploit government initiatives such as the Chema Chema Fund. This fund, administered by CEDA and LEA, is meant to support informal traders and low-income earners in Botswana. However, when fronting activities come into play, the intended beneficiaries are sidelined, and the funds are misused for personal gain.” It has been discovered that foreign nationals predominantly of Zimbabwean and Nigerian origin use unsuspecting Batswana to attempt to access the Chema Chema Fund. It is understood that they approach these Batswana under the guise of drafting business plans for them or simply coming up with ‘bankable business ideas that qualify for Chema Chema.’

Observers say the Chema Chema Fund has the potential to uplift the lives of many Batswana who are struggling to make ends meet. They argue that it is crucial that these funds are used for their intended purpose and not siphoned off through illegal activities such as fronting. The Ministry says the warning it issued serves as a reminder to all stakeholders involved in the administration of these funds to ensure transparency and accountability in their disbursement.

One local commentator said it is important to highlight the impact of fronting activities on the local economy and the livelihoods of Batswana. He said by using locals as a front for foreign-owned businesses, opportunities for local entrepreneurs are stifled, and the economic empowerment of Batswana is hindered. The Ministry’s warning of heavy penalties is a call to action for all stakeholders to work together to eliminate fronting activities and promote a level playing field for local businesses.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Trade and Industry’s warning of heavy penalties for fronting activities is a necessary step to protect the integrity of local industries and promote economic empowerment for Batswana. “It is imperative that all stakeholders comply with regulations and work towards a transparent and accountable business environment. By upholding the law and cracking down on illegal activities, we can ensure a fair and prosperous future for all Batswana.”










Continue Reading


Merck Foundation and African First Ladies mark World Health Day 2024

15th April 2024

Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany marks “World Health Day” 2024 together with Africa’s First Ladies who are also Ambassadors of MerckFoundation “More Than a Mother” Campaign through their Scholarship and Capacity Building Program. Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation emphasized, “At Merck Foundation, we mark World Health Day every single day of the year over the past 12 years, by building healthcare capacity and transforming patient care across Africa, Asia and beyond.

I am proud to share that Merck Foundation has provided over 1740 scholarships to aspiring young doctors from 52 countries, in 44 critical and underserved medical specialties such as Oncology, Diabetes, Preventative Cardiovascular Medicine, Endocrinology, Sexual and Reproductive Medicine, Acute Medicine, Respiratory Medicine, Embryology & Fertility specialty, Gastroenterology, Dermatology, Psychiatry, Emergency and Resuscitation Medicine, Critical Care, Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Neonatal Medicine, Advanced Surgical Practice, Pain Management, General Surgery, Clinical Microbiology and infectious diseases, Internal Medicine, Trauma & Orthopedics, Neurosurgery, Neurology, Cardiology, Stroke Medicine, Care of the Older Person, Family Medicine, Pediatrics and Child Health, Obesity & Weight Management, Women’s Health, Biotechnology in ART and many more”.

As per the available data, Africa has only 34.6% of the required doctors, nurses, and midwives. It is projected that by 2030, Africa would need additional 6.1 million doctors, nurses, and midwives*. “For Example, before the start of the Merck Foundation programs in 2012; there was not a single Oncologist, Fertility or Reproductive care specialists, Diabetologist, Respiratory or ICU specialist in many countries such as The Gambia, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Central African Republic, Guinea, Burundi, Niger, Chad, Ethiopia, Namibia among others. We are certainly creating historic legacy in Africa, and also beyond. Together with our partners like Africa’s First Ladies, Ministries of Health, Gender, Education and Communication, we are impacting the lives of people in the most disadvantaged communities in Africa and beyond.”, added Senator Dr. Kelej. Merck Foundation works closely with their Ambassadors, the African First Ladies and local partners such as; Ministries of Health, Education, Information & Communication, Gender, Academia, Research Institutions, Media and Art in building healthcare capacity and addressing health, social & economic challenges in developing countries and under-served communities. “I strongly believe that training healthcare providers and building professional healthcare capacity is the right strategy to improve access to equitable and quality at health care in Africa.

Therefore, I am happy to announce the Call for Applications for 2024 Scholarships for young doctors with special focus on female doctors for our online one-year diploma and two year master degree in 44 critical and underserved medical specialties, which includes both Online Diploma programs and On-Site Fellowship and clinical training programs. The applications are invited through the Office of our Ambassadors and long-term partners, The First Ladies of Africa and Ministry of Health of each country.” shared Dr . Kelej. “Our aim is to improve the overall health and wellbeing of people by building healthcare capacity across Africa, Asia and other developing countries. We are strongly committed to transforming patientcare landscape through our scholarships program”, concluded Senator Kelej.

Continue Reading


Interpol fugitive escapes from Botswana

15th April 2024

John Isaak Ndovi, a Tanzanian national embroiled in controversy and pursued under a red notice by the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol), has mysteriously vanished, bypassing a scheduled bail hearing at the Extension 2 Magistrate Court in Gaborone. Previously apprehended by Botswana law enforcement at the Tlokweng border post several months earlier, his escape has ignited serious concerns.

Accused of pilfering assets worth in excess of P1 million, an amount translating to roughly 30,000 Omani Riyals, Ndovi has become a figure of paramount interest, especially to the authorities in the Sultanate of Oman, nestled in the far reaches of Asia.

The unsettling news of his disappearance surfaced following his failure to present himself at the Extension 2 Magistrate Court the preceding week. Speculation abounds that Ndovi may have sought refuge in South Africa in a bid to elude capture, prompting a widespread mobilization of law enforcement agencies to ascertain his current location.

In an official communiqué, Detective Senior Assistant Police Commissioner Selebatso Mokgosi of Interpol Gaborone disclosed Ndovi’s apprehension last September at the Tlokweng border, a capture made possible through the vigilant issuance of the Interpol red notice.

At 36, Ndovi is implicated in a case of alleged home invasion in Oman. Despite the non-existence of an extradition treaty between Botswana and Oman, Nomsa Moatswi, the Director of the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP), emphasized that the lack of formal extradition agreements does not hinder her office’s ability to entertain extradition requests. She highlighted the adoption of international cooperation norms, advocating for collaboration through the lenses of international comity and reciprocity.

Moatswi disclosed the intensified effort by law enforcement to locate Ndovi following his no-show in court, and pointed to Botswana’s track record of extraditing two international fugitives from France and Zimbabwe in the previous year as evidence of the country’s relentless pursuit of legal integrity.

When probed about the potential implications of Ndovi’s case on Botswana’s forthcoming evaluation by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), Moatswi reserved her speculations. She acknowledged the criticality of steering clear of blacklisting, suggesting that this singular case is unlikely to feature prominently in the FATF’s assessment criteria.


Continue Reading