Mmegi Blogs :: Is Ombudsman Augustine Makgonatsotlhe our own public protector Thuli Madonsela?
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Last Updated
Friday 17 November 2017, 18:35 pm.
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Is Ombudsman Augustine Makgonatsotlhe our own public protector Thuli Madonsela?

Let Gwede Mantashe hobnob with ‘Domi ya rona le bana ba rona,’ Batswana masses have their own Ombudsman , Augustine Makgonatsotlhe rising from the ashes of his predecessor, Festinah Bakwena who to her credit decried her lack of statutory powers like those enjoyed by Advocate Thuli Madosela across the border!
By Michael Dingake Tue 05 Sep 2017, 15:34 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Blogs :: Is Ombudsman Augustine Makgonatsotlhe our own public protector Thuli Madonsela?








Ombudsman Makgonatsotlhe in spite of the lack of specific provisions to arm him with the tools of the trade ordinarily enjoyed by an officer vested with the wherewithal of power and authority associated with the concept and definition of Ombudsman’s independence finds no excuse in the man-made constraints in the legislation creating his office, has exercised his intuitive discretion, to restore the confidence, expected of this office, but missed since the first Ombudsman Lethebe Maine, sensitised Batswana, what role the office was meant to play in this jungle of dog-eat-dog !

Obviously, after consulting authoritative literature and the conduct of all his predecessors in office, he probably thought it right to take a leaf from the fearless of them all, Ombudsman Maine who was unafraid to exercise the powers of the Office enjoyed by his counterparts elsewhere! Lethebe Maine, we remember nostaligically, was the one who drew public attention to the fact that the Vice President Lt General Ian Khama had no right to fly the BDF choppers when he was no longer staff member of the BDF.

His verdict wasn’t appreciated by the powers that ruled the roost, the President of the day HE Festus Mogae, and of course the offender under him, Vice President, Lieutenant General Ian Khama; but Maine wasn’t discouraged from sticking to his last like an old-fashioned cobbler, who knew his duty was to mend broken shoes. Maine went further to organise a seminar to interrogate the validity or otherwise, of the ‘independence’ of his Office!

Botswana is in dire need of men and women of the calibre of Advocate Lethebe Maine and dare I say the current Ombudsman Augustine Makgonetsotlhe, who aren’t shy to stick their necks out when push comes to shove. It’s wrong for characters to call themselves what they are not, democratic, when they are far from it! Pronouncing on complaint placed before him  by the BNF, that the national broadcaster, Btv was biased against opposition parties ,Ombudsman Makgonatsotlhe concurred.

“ …..It cannot be equitable, in my view that out of 89 political party events aired on a national broad-caster who seeks to ensure that the public is informed of the policies and programmes of all political players and to provide equity and balance in their coverage of such, one party enjoys 82% coverage compared to 18% of the rest……This is failure to achieve balance and equity in the coverage of such activities. Btv therefore gave one party an undue advantage over the others…That obviously resulted in injustice to other political parties and those with interest in Botswana’s political sphere as they were denied the opportunity to compete fairly with the ruling

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party. …. Such need to be corrected in order for Btv to play its role properly and effectively….  ” Hear, hear!

Ombudsman, impartially, has given a lie to the propaganda disseminated by Domkrag that the State media is fair and just to the opposition parties. It’s this bias that gives unfair advantage to the BDP. It’s clear that 50 years of BDP’s uninterrupted rule has been nothing but political racketeering against the opposition, Batswana and the democratic principle.

The state media services, paid for by public taxes, has been monopolised by Domkrag to hog the false limelight that they, governing cheats they are, are the patriots, they are the faction that oozes public interest to which ‘there is no alternative.’ What? No alternative to unscrupulous political thugs and base political thuggery? The opposition parties have always said, that precisely due to State media bias, their  complaints have been drowned by the din of propaganda circulated by Domkrag through the Btv, Radio Botswana and the Daily News  - a propaganda news-channel triumvirate!

Batswana will have no excuse from now on to swallow hook, line and sinker, the political blasphemy peddled by the BDP political dinosaur, that there is no alternative to its rule! Instead of the public, including the opposition parties, discordantly singing the refrain of ‘disunity’ amongst the opposition parties as the contributing factor to the longevity of Domkrag in power, the public must switch its gaze to the fraudulent conduct, Domkrag uses to hoodwink the electorate and pose as the darling of the masses. Phew! How the rival political parties and the benighted masses are duped to believe the Goebelsian lie: The opposition has no alternative policies, the opposition is divided, the opposition will bring violence, the opposition is this, that and the other, when the characterisation perfectly fits Domkrag persona, more than it does the opposition!  

Batswana, awake! Have you ever thought of this: “As soon as dictators get into power, one of the first things they do is take control of the media, commandeering the radio and television stations and shutting down independent newspapers. It is obvious why this is so – control the source of news and you control the people.” For the past 50-plus years you have been under a dictatorship! Eighty percent of what Batswana hear, see or read is humbug!

Henceforth, let the Ombudsman’s findings be a refrain, a chorus sung into the ears, the minds and the emotions of Batswana, that all this long years you have been hoodwinked: Domkrag has been selling you the dummy, distorting the truth about the opposition and spinning a yarn about their pseudo-achievements. Beware!

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