Gaborone City Mayor, Kagiso Thutlwe, says the build-up to the 2019 general elections is characterized by harassment of opposition leaders by the state and its institutions.
In a speech during the opening of the full council meeting on Monday morning, Thutlwe said as the council, they would like to register their deepest concerns at the use of public institutions such as Botswana Unified Revenue Service (BURS), Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crimes (DCEC) among others, to harass and intimidate opposition leaders.
“It is a cause for concern that public institutions are unleashed by the BDP government to intimidate and embarrass opposition leaders,” said the city mayor, saying of late it has become evident that BURS is used as a political weapon against those who oppose President Masisi’s administration.
In what he called a democratic deficit, Thutlwe advised public institutions to remain professional and apolitical in the discharge of their duties.
“It is unacceptable for public institutions such as the BURS to be used as hire guns in an attempt to silence opposition leaders. Such conduct stifles our democracy,” Thutlwe told the full council meeting.
He revealed that another threat to Botswana’s democracy is the politically motivated objections which he said seek to remove certain opposition leaders from the national voters roll.
“Duma Boko, Ndaba Gaolathe and many other leaders have been victims of this sinister political plot to have their names removed from the voters roll on account of questionable objections from hired guns.”
Thutlwe cautioned the ‘hired guns and their handlers’ that their actions are unpatriotic and a danger to Botswana’s democracy.