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‘I am not a hired gun’ -Boko

SHARE   |   Thursday, 19 July 2018   |   By Phillimon Mmeso
President Masisi [L] with Leader of Opposition, Duma Boko outside the office of the President on last week Thursday President Masisi [L] with Leader of Opposition, Duma Boko outside the office of the President on last week Thursday

Khama is not sponsoring me, he says

Confirms meeting former President

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It is total cowardice – Masisi

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President of the opposition Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC), Duma Boko, has rubbished accusations that his motion of no confidence on President Mokgweetsi Masisi is a clear demonstration that he is a hired gun, sponsored by former president Ian Khama.

The accusations came after highly placed sources within the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) revealed that most of the issues raised in the motion of no confidence by Boko form part of a letter that Khama wrote to Masisi complaining about how former Director of Directorate of Intelligence and Security Services (DISS) Isaac Kgosi was dismissed.

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In an interview, Boko trashed allegations that the motion was sponsored by Khama, saying he cannot support a government that he has vowed to unseat in 2014. “The fact that they are making those allegations is clear that the BDP is at war with itself. It is divided and are scared of their members,” he said.

Boko confirmed that he has met Khama and that it was just a friendly chat acknowledging that they are not enemies. It is alleged that two weeks ago Boko met with Khama and former DISS boss Isaac Kgosi where a plan was hatched to table the motion of no confidence and some disgruntled BDP MPs will be brought along to support the motion. Last week Saturday some BDP members met in Palapye and were briefed about the motion and that they will ensure that it is determined by a secret ballot.

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Masisi is said to have been tipped off about the secret meeting, which was mostly attended by MPs from the central region and quickly convened a meeting between the BDP Central Committee, cabinet ministers and backbenchers on Monday to try to defuse the plot. Addressing members of the media on his 100 days in office, Masisi confirmed that he has heard allegations that there are some people who want to topple him as the president of the country and that of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP).

“If they cannot come out and state their case it is just total cowardice. Even if elections can be called tomorrow I am more than ready,” he said adding that he met all BDP MPs and none expressed misgivings about him or his administration.

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On the other hand Boko said he met some BDP members seeking their support for the motion and most of them agreed with everything he said and that they provided him with more information. When responding to the motion of no confidence, assistant Minister of Tertiary Education Fidelis Molao almost let the cat out when he started accusing Boko of being a hired gun and rubble rousing for certain people. “This Motion has been brought to the House and I opined that the mover of the Motion is a hired gun and I stick by it. He is doing the bidding for certain people, and it is very dangerous Mr Speaker,” said Molao, refusing to state those certain people.

The name which prominently featured in the motion were that of Kgosi  whom Boko said that he was singled out and targeted for termination or removal without being afforded proper and due process and a fair hearing noting that this poses an imminent and present danger to the security of the country. Another person that Boko vehemently defended is former President Khama whom he said President Masisi refused to appoint someone he recommended as his Private Secretary.

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“The former President of this Republic operating within the laws that you yourselves have approved as Government, your own laws, makes a request, his Private Secretary is retiring; George Tlhalerwa, you know him. He is retiring from serving the former President as his Private Secretary. He retired at the end of June. The former President writes to the Government and the current President and says, “my Private Secretary is retiring, I would like to have you appoint this person whom I have worked with for a long period of my career. He was my Private Secretary when I was the Vice President. I know him, he knows me. He has served me. There is a vacancy here and I would like Isaac Seabelo Kgosi to be appointed as my Private Secretary.” Is there anything that prevents his appointment lawfully? No. When he was removed from his office as Director General of the DIS, did anybody suggest that he had committed an offence? Was he convicted? Was he tried? Was there a hearing? No! He simply was retired at the pleasure of the President” said Boko, inviting a hail of hot coals descending on him from Minister of Defence, Justice and Security Shaw Kgathi.

“I am wondering since when did Boko start loving former President Khama? It is like hearing Satan praising you when you are a Christian, you ask yourself if you will enter the Kingdom of God,” said Kgathi to the laughter of Parliamentarians.

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On defending Kgosi, Boko said that they are using him (Kgosi) as a scapegoat instead of addressing the rot within government. “If he is guilty of corruption why don’t you prosecute him and I know they are scared because he told them that they must dare try,” said Boko also rubbishing claims that he will represent Kgosi should he be prosecuted.

Boko was accused of tribalism when he said that President Masisi has appointed people based on where they come or their ethnicity. “We have seen him go out of his way to deliberately discriminate against certain individuals who are competent objectively, on an objective assessment. The only reason they were not appointed or elevated is because of the areas from which they come from and the tribes to which they belong. You can tell, because if what sets apart,” he reasoned.

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Kgathi didn’t take kindly to the statement by the Leader of the Opposition accusing him of perpetuating tribalism. “If you have a man who aspires to be a State President, whose trump card is tribalism, ethnicity, you must be very careful. Nations have collapsed through people like him,” hit out Kgathi.

Who is funding Boko?

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Recently Boko surprised many within the Botswana National Front (BNF) when he announced that he will sponsor their conference held in Rakops this weekend with P 2 million which will cover transports for delegates from all the regions and meals. Some alleged that the money is partly from the Former President as part of the deal to push the motion of confidence which Boko confirmed that they will bring it after the BDP primaries in August.

Boko rubbished the allegations saying that they have friends who pledged some money adding that if they can manage to fund their 2014 general elections what can make it difficult for them to fund the conference. “That is ludicrous to think that we can sought funding from our political nemesis,” he dismissed the allegations saying it is the fermentation of thinking by those who spread the allegations.

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He also confirmed that they have engaged Status Reputation Management Consultancy to help them with their 2019 campaign strategy and refused to state how much it will cost the UDC.

Asked why they didn’t inform other leaders like the BNF Secretary General Moeti Mohwasa who is also the Publicity Secretary for UDC who in the past said he is not aware of the development, Boko said that not everyone should know about some operations. “Certain operation issues that are of the highest level are not told to everyone,” he said adding that both the two UDC vice president know about the development.    



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