Veteran trade unionist Johnson Motshwarakgole on Tuesday escalated his attack on President Ian Khama to another level saying his ascendance to power is the worst thing that has ever happened to local politics in the history of Botswana. Clearly furious, a charged up Motshwarakgole said Khama is obsessed with self and has no regard for anybody else, particularly the working class. He said this is demonstrated by Khama’s coercion of the BDP majority Parliamentarians to award him a luxurious retirement package to satisfy his lifestyle of a movie star while public servants and other workers wallow in poverty. "To him the only suitable form of employment for Batswana is Ipelegeng and measly wages. Khama is the evil that has poisoned relationships in the public service, and killed any form of social dialogue between public servants and the employer (government)," roared Motshwarakgole, citing the refusal by the President to meet trade union leaders since coming into power in 2008. Drawing a comparison between former Presidents Ketumile Masire, Festus Mogae and Khama, Motshwarakgole said the latter is so anti-social that he does not see the need to consult Batswana about his departure from office in about 10 months. "We have heard rumours that he may not step down. He should be warned that workers of this country will remove if him should he even entertain such thoughts because we are fed up," warned Motshwarakgole, buttressing comments by his colleagues in the leadership of BOFEPUSU that the federation has resolved to intensify political participation ahead of 2019 elections. He, however, warned that regime change will not be smooth sailing as the opposition parties sometimes appear disorganised and lacking focus. He said in forming allegiances with politicians ahead of 2019 they would be open to anyone from across the political divide as long as they support the workers' agenda.
In a no holds barred vitriol Motshwarakgole fingered Judge Monametsi Gaongalelwe of the Court of Appeal (CoA) for contributing to the destruction of the country with decisions he renders in court. "You should be vigilant and watch as Gaongalelwe's decisions plunge this country into a crisis. We are not going to accept decisions that are clearly calculated to destroy platforms like the workers' Parliament, the PSBC. We will not shy away from criticising Executive-minded judges who pass judgments to please the current administration and their friends," said Motshwarakgole. The judge came under the scrutiny of trade union leaders two weeks ago after he ordered a stay of execution of an earlier judgment by Justice Tshepo Motswagole. The effect of the stay judgment was to preserve the status quo where government continues to pay salary increments to non-unionised public servants and those belonging to trade unions outside the PSBC. Consequently public servants who are members of BOFEPUSU affiliated trade unions were denied the 3% and 4% adjustment awarded their colleagues in 2016/17 and 2017/18 financial years. Shortly before then Judge Gaongalelwe had in a CoA decision differed with four of his colleagues and ruled in favour of Khama. He dismissed an appeal by Law Society of Botswana (LSB) who were challenging Khama's refusal to appoint attorney Omphemetse Motumise to the bench as a High Court judge despite a recommendation from the Judicial Service Commission (JSC). On the same day Judge Gaongalelwe threw out an appeal by a teacher from the central region who was dismissed from work for writing an opinion piece about Khama's administration in a local newspaper.