There was drama at Parliament on Monday afternoon when Botswana Police reacted violently to the unemployed youth who picketed in front of parliament, seeking legislators’ intervention to have Government create more jobs. The youth, some of whom came draped in their graduation, wanted to have a peaceful demonstration seeking Members of Parliament to address their concerns. The police, who were armed, demanded that the job seekers to disperse as they did not have permit to demonstrate in front of Parliament.
The MP for Gaborone Central Dr Phenyo Butale asked the job seekers to write down their petition so that he can present it to Parliament the following day. After the demonstrators refused to disperse, choosing to hold hands and pray, the police officers reacted by beating them and arresting some of them in the process. One of the arrested was the Botswana National Front Youth League (BNFYL) President Richard Khumoekae. Efforts by Dr Butale to have the police stop arresting the demonstrators hit a snag as they were whisked away in police vehicles. One journalist from E-Botswana was arrested after he refused to delete a video footage he took during the demonstrations. He is currently detained at the Central Police Station in Gaborone.