Batawana royals accused of meddling

Batawana royals accused of meddling


The Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) councillors in Maun have accused Batawana Royals of meddling into politics.

The councillors alleged that the Batawana royal family was de-campaigning the ruling party.

Speaking at the sub council meeting this week, Makalamabedi South councillor Moetetsi Mogalakwe said a delegation of chiefs reported illegal settlers to Tawana Land Board with the aim of de-campaigning BDP.

He questioned the timing by chiefs saying they deliberately did that so that the people could blame the ruling party for being cruel on its people.

“Why did they wait until election time? They were supposed to address the squatters first instead of approaching Land Board. They are buying votes for the opposition,” he said.

Speaking to The Voice after the meeting, Mogalakwe said it is a known fact that Batawana royals affiliate to the Umbrella Democratic Change (UDC) and they are abusing their powers as chiefs to lure voters to the opposition.

He said from their investigations it looks like the same chiefs were behind illegal allocation to make the number of illegal settlers high.

Mogalakwe complained that if proper assessment and negotiations are not done on the issue, the BDP is going to lose in affected areas like Shashe, Sedie, Botshabelo and Matlapana.

Botswana Congress Party (BCP) councillor Kitso Ngande of Makgobokgobo ward said the move by chiefs to campaign for some politicians is not something new because it has been there all along.

He said that it is shocking to see BDP councillors complaining now while they did enjoy the same benefits when the chiefs were campaigning for BDP candidates in the past.

“We are used to having chiefs taking sides with their favoured politicians and BDP councillors must stop crying because they enjoyed the same privilege some years ago.

Those chiefs did not cause any confusion,” he said.

UDC denied having support from the royal house.

Councillor Lekopanye Ledimo of Kareng Ward said they were on their own and asked the BDP councillors to stop dragging the Bogosi name into politics.

Batawana’s Senior chief representative Kgosi Charles Letsholathebe distanced himself from the issue saying he was not aware of accusations levelled against them.

“We are far from politics and I will not be doing myself and the office any justice in commenting on an issue that has not been brought to us.”

He also dismissed that there was a delegation from his office which approached Tawana Land Board saying whoever did that was not authorised by his office.

Sub Land Board Secretary Tsholofelo Otukile told the meeting that a delegation of three chiefs from Moeti, Shashe and Senonnori ward reported 200 illegal settlers to their office.

She said the move came after they had approached the chiefs’ assistance in line with Land Administration Procedures System project better known as LAPCAS.

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