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Morupisi plays ‘April Fool’ with executives

SHARE   |   Monday, 11 April 2016   |   By Ditiro Motlhabane
Morupisi Morupisi

Government Enclave has become a beehive of activity with executives engulfed in fear as uncertainty of positions they hold has become the order of the day. Permanent Secretary to the President Carter Morupisi has brought fear among senior civil servants with reshuffling reaching unprecedented levels in recent weeks, sparking speculation that the transfers could be politically motivated. On April Fool's Day Morupisi stunned the public service when he stopped two Permanent Secretaries on the doorsteps of their new offices and transferred them elsewhere with new designations. No sooner had he unlocked the door at the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Culture than Richard Matlhare was informed that he has been transferred again to the office of Coordinator, Poverty Eradication in the Office of the President on the same day. Matlhare previously served as Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education and Skills Development. 

Uncertainty hovers over the whereabouts of Dr Theophilus Mooko who was supposed to take up new appointment as Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Education on April 01. Impeccable sources told The Patriot on Sunday by the end of the week that Dr Mooko was still holed up at Directorate of Public Service Management (DPSM) despite his transfer effecting on April Fool's Day. This paved way for the following new appointments, effecting the same day. Kago Ramokate appointed on promotion to the office of Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youth, Sport and Culture; Legomela D. Molodi appointed on promotion to the office of General Counsel in the Office of the President; Tefo G. Bogosi appointed on promotion to the position of Legal Advisor in the Directorate of Public Service Management; and Goitsemang Morekisi redeployed as Project Coordinator (Economic Stimulus Programme) in the Office of the President.

Perhaps owing to Morupisi's stern warning last week and issuing a confidentiality form for all public servants to commit to secrecy, sources at government enclave are tight lipped about the goings-on in the public service. Morupisi's reshuffle comes hot on the heels of the recent deployment of Chief Executive of Kweneng District Council (KwDC) - Wadzha Tema - to a lower ranking office at the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development. Tema has been redeployed to position of Head of Strategy and Reforms, a position lower than the one he held. The position of Council Secretary, which Tema is leaving is on E1 while the new position he has been redeployed to is on the lower E2 salary scale, according to government white paper. However, Tema's salary has been protected at E1.

Recent deployments and appointments
Since his arrival at OP at the end of 2014 Morupisi has never shied away from cracking the whip, a trait which made a lot of enemies for him while heading the Directorate of Public Service Management (DPSM). John-Thomas Dipowe, deputy permanent secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation  was redeployed to the Office of the President as deputy permanent secretary with immediate effect. A week later on February 25 Morupisi has announced appointment Advocate Abraham Keetshabe as Director of Public Prosecutions-Attorney General’s Chambers with effect from date of assumption of duty. Shabani Chikanda was appointed on promotion to the position of Parliamentary Council with effect from March 01.

Who is Carter Morupisi?
Employee representatives (trade unions) loathe Morupisi for his tough stance and confrontational approach in defense of government and the Khama administration. The Malaka-born no-nonsense Morupisi was appointed Permanent Secretary to the President and Secretary to Cabinet in October 2014. He began his career as an Assistant Animal Production Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture in 1982 and advanced in his career to be the Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture in 2006. He then moved to the Ministry of Infrastructure, Science and Technology October in 2009 and assumed the role of Permanent Secretary. After his stint as Permanent Secretary he progressed to head the Directorate of Public Service Management as its Director with effect from 1 April 2012, where he was responsible for human resources policy formulation and administration of the terms and conditions of service for the Botswana Public Service. He holds an MSc in Animal Science from the New Mexico State University. Morupisi is said to be eyeing Prince Maele's constituency under the BDP ticket in the 2019 general elections. His wife lost council elections in 2014. With the eminent departure of Morupisi in 2017/18 there is a tussle between Ruth Maphorisa - Director of DPSM and Pearl Matome - PS Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs and former Director of DPSM, which has divided the top civil service into factions aligned with those at cabinet.