Obakeng Matlou started this petition to His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Botswana, Dr. M.E.K Masisi
This communique is in reference to your cabinet reshuffle on Friday the 14th through the Permanent Secretary to the President in which you have redeployed Minister Ngaka Ngaka to the Ministry of Nationality, Immigration and Gender Affairs. We vigorously and unashamedly resist and petition you to reconsider this decision based on the following points:
1) It is alleged, that on or around February 2014 Mr Ngaka Ngaka was involved in a violent public brawl with his wife Mrs Boingotlo Dineo Ngaka in Mogoditshane. We find his actions unacceptable and contend that they declare him unfit to lead this Ministry.
2) Mrs Boingotlo Dineo Ngaka was quoted in The Voice Newspaper of February 2014 as having registered a case of assault with the Molepolole Police Station known and confirmed by Station Commander Mr Tawana Tawana. Regrettably, Mrs Ngaka also complained of what she deemed preferential treatment for Mr Ngaka Ngaka by the police.
In light of these issues,
1) The Ministry of Nationality, Immigration and Gender Affairs is host to gender issues and is therefore a very sensitive Ministry. For a person of Mr Ngaka Ngaka’s record to be appointed as Minister goes directly against the objective of sensitizing, educating and seeking Batswana to end Gender Based Violence (GBV).
2) Botswana is signatory to the SADC Protocol on Gender and Development, and is in the process of domesticating policies, laws and practices on ending Gender Based Violence in all its forms in order to have a gender transformative, sensitive and progressive society. Botswana is duty-bound to uphold all these statutes, his appointment contradicts this.
3) The First Lady, Mrs Neo Masisi, has done a tremendous work of launching a movement on emancipating the girl child on gender issues through her tagline “Eseng Mo Ngwaneng” and for that we applaud her. However, appointment of Mr Ngaka Ngaka will proof difficult for the civil society and the general public to support her work going forward. We view your collective efforts as advocative towards eradicating Gender Based Violence.
4) That if it is Your Excellency’s conviction to redeploy Mr Ngaka Ngaka as Minister, we’re happy to allow you to exercise your authority, however we wish to urge you to redeploy him elsewhere other than the Ministry of Nationality, Immigration and Gender Affairs. We are of the firm believe that Honourable Dorcus Kobela Makgato be retained in this Ministry as she was starting to understand the Ministry and working well with many partners on issues of Gender and Gender Based Violence.
5) We believe in Therisano and Botho. While we respect that it is your sole prerogative to appoint cabinet members in their portfolios, we also advice His Excellency to be considerate of the public reservations, opinions and the sensitivity of this particular matter. We strongly believe if your decision isn’t rescinded, then the worst precedent will have been set i.e. bad reputation and decisions our legislators make do not matter.
In conclusion, we remain hopeful of reconsideration of Mr Ngaka Ngaka’s redeployment. We are convinced he is not the right person to lead this sensitive Ministry through the alleged record of violence against a woman. We also wish you, the First Lady, your entire family and the people of the Republic of Botswana, a Merry Christmas and a prosperous Happy New Year.
We look forward to a positive response from you.
And co-signed with Civil Society Representatives, Gender Activists and members of the community on 17 December 2018.