Kgosi Masilo coronation celebrations go ahead despite govt’s best effortsBy Kabelo DipholoGovernment was left with egg on the face after attempts to stop the inauguration celebrations of Kgosi Ezekiel Joel Masilo of Bobonong failed.
Despite a savingram from the Ministry of Local Government ordering the event be postponed, last Friday’s celebrations went ahead, with hundreds turning up to enjoy the festivities.
The directive noted the Babirwa tribe was polarised over the Bogosi issue and thus insisted the celebrations be put on hold until the situation on the ground stabilises.
However, in their response, through lawyers Monthe Marumo & Co, the organising committee said they were unaware of any ‘polarisation’ and stated matter of factly that the event would take place as planned.
The Voice learnt that government then withdrew all vehicles from the Bobonong Tribal Administration and ordered all civil servants not to attend the event.
“Government had to make a u-turn in the middle of the night because they knew we were going to deal with them!” said Kgosi Goitseone Patane.
The silver-haired royal said the Botswana government would have shot itself in the foot had it gone ahead with its original plan.
“This is our Kgosi. We know what we are doing as Babirwa and no one will ever dictate to us how we should run our affairs!” charged Patane, who further revealed government officials called him in a panic the previous afternoon requesting an impromptu meeting.
“I was away in Francistown so I referred them to my assistant. All along I knew the event would go on. We are custodians of this institution and if any questions arise I’m ready to answer for as long as I’m still alive,” declared an emotional Patane – a declaration that received rousing approval.
In his address, Kgosi Masilo, who appealed for calm, said he was deeply upset by the government directive.
“I was really hurt! This taught me a lesson that as a tribe we should not be heavily reliant on government. It is high time we have our own assets and resources. This will allow us to continue having celebrations like this one without any government interference,” he surmised.
“This however does not in anyway mean we are cutting ties with government. We’ll continue working together to build the Babirwa tribe,” stressed Kgosi Masilo, whose official coronation was on 17 October 2017.
Slightly less restrained in his comments, the guest speaker, Kgosi Serogola Seretse announced that former President Ian Khama had intended to come but changed his mind following the savingram.
“You have to be aware that when you touch a Kgosi, you also touch the tribe,” warned the Ngwato royal, who advised Kgosi Masilo to ‘stick’ with Paramount Chief Ian Khama.
“The Paramount Chief is the only one you should worry about. There’s no one above him. After him its Christ!” concluded Seretse, much to the crowd’s amusement.