Arming DWNP was illegal – Masisi

SHARE   |   Thursday, 13 September 2018   |   By Phillimon Mmeso
President Mokgweetsi Masisi President Mokgweetsi Masisi

The clash between Minister of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism Tshekedi Khama and President Mokgweetsi Masisi came into the open on Saturday and Monday.

Minister Tshekedi on the other blames the disarmament of the Department of Wildlife and National Parks (DWNP) Anti-Poaching Unit to the increased cases of poaching especially of elephants while President Masisi dismisses the logic behind.


On Monday Minister Khama blast both his Permanent Secretary Thato Raphaka and President Masisi for being emotional when dealing with the recent media furor that 87 elephants were killed by poachers.

The outspoken Khama said that he did not agree with the release of the Press Statement which he said had lot of inaccuracies.


“There is no doubt the disarming of the APU could have contributed to the high rates of poaching in the Chobe area,” he said.

On Saturday President Masisi said that he is not apologetic about disarming members of Department of Wildlife and National Parks (DWNP) Anti-Poaching Unit.


Addressing the media upon arrival from his week-long state visit to China and Seychelles, Masisi said the government cannot claim to uphold the rule of law and yet engaged in illegal practices.

“You cannot promote illegality and claim to be law abiding. I am an addict of the rule of law and cannot be associated with banditry and illegality. The stretch of imagination that i can be associated with illegality is utter nonsense,” responded Masisi.


Minister of Environment, Conservation, Natural Resources and Tourism Tshekedi Khama and some conservationist who were against the disarmament of APU argue that it has led to high rate of poaching especially of the elephants.

Masisi dismissed the reasoning, noting that he is a conservationist and cannot endanger the flora and fauna of the country as some people suggest.


"This stretch of imagination of linking the poaching of any species with alleged disarmament of department of wildlife is nothing but hysteria. It's illogical and fatally flawed in logic because it is diametrically opposed to the principle and addiction of the rule of law," he hit out.

Masisi, who seemed to have been infuriated by the international media and some conservationists who felt that he has reversed the gains made by former President Ian Khama, didn’t take kindly to the accusation.


"This sudden wisdom of thinking that you have answers to where elephants come and go..." Gare ata diketong. Botswana and Batswana will prevail. Those who want a ride, kebidiwa Mokgweetsi" he hit out before wrapping his file and taking his seat.

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