Mmegi Online :: Top 10 WTF moments of 2017
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Top 10 WTF moments of 2017

It was a topsy-turvy year all round, from the refilling of Gaborone Dam, to the ‘o tla imentioner’ craziness. Mmegi Staff Writer, MBONGENI MGUNI counts down the year’s What the Heck (WTH) moments
By Mbongeni Mguni Fri 22 Dec 2017, 13:20 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Top 10 WTF moments of 2017








Real live prison break

The year began with the country’s biggest prison break, when 18 inmates busted out of the Francistown Central Prison, sparking a massive manhunt. The 18, comprising 15 Zimbabweans and three Batswana, were serving time for crimes such as murder, armed robbery, house breaking and illegal possession of ivory. Most of them were rearrested, one died at large and by the time of the last reports, at least eight were still in the wind.

 

Mma V’s African dream ends

Botswana’s Foreign Minister Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi lost the race for African Union Commission chairperson to Chad’s Moussa Mahamat, in an election that again exposed the power of regional politics in Africa. The WTH moment comes from the fact that Venson-Moitoi went from being the candidate with the highest votes in the first botched poll in Rwanda, to losing out in the early rounds of the final ballot in January in Addis Ababa.

 

Dineo lands and fills the Dam

Gaborone Dam went from failing for the first time in its 53 year history in December 2014, to spending more two years empty, to filling up to more than 100% within a three-month period of record downpours. The difference was Cyclone Dineo, the storm that hit the country in February 2017, caused flooding and damage everywhere, while also lifting Gaborone Dam from 31% on February 2 to 103% later the same month. WTH!

 

Khama saves Mosilili, then…

Early in the year, SADC leaders meeting in Gaborone reached their breaking point with Lesotho’s refusal to abide by resolutions made to bring peace to the kingdom. The leaders, apparently led by Jacob Zuma, wanted to boot Lesotho out of the SADC blot, but President Ian Khama saved the day, persuading then Lesotho PM, Pakalitha Mosilili over lunch in Gaborone. By May, after Mosilili backtracked on commitments and lashed out at SADC, Khama had had enough and threatened to withdraw Botswana from a key team observing the kingdom.

 

BCL nearly sells for US$1

An effort to secure Dubai investors for BCL Mine goes up in smoke, after a very promising start. The public is shocked to learn that part of the deal would have seen BCL being sold for a token US$1, in exchange for the investors taking up its significant debt and liabilities. The mine remains on the market, but will be

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sold piecemeal.

 

Air Botswana dolls up, no suitor

For the third time in its history, the national airline prettied itself up for betrothal and was left at the altar. In a classic WTH, a senior transport ministry official volunteered information at a Parliamentary committee hearing to the effect that tourism giant, Wilderness Holdings, had been earmarked to takeover Air Botswana. In a storm of public outrage, the tourism giant withdrew from the deal, while Transport Minister, Kitso Mokaila was not impressed, telling media: “Kana re ne re ise re bo re simolole go bua, lona lo bo lo itlhaganelela go tshola pitsa e ise e butswe!”

 

The Dalai Dilemma

An almighty row erupted between Gaborone and Beijing, over the latter’s stated plans to invite the Dalai Lama, the Chinese government’s sworn enemy. Government initially downplayed its role in the spiritual leader’s trip, but suddenly came out strongly to defend the country’s right to welcome any visitor she wishes. Beijing responded strongly; Khama responded strongly. The day was saved when the Dalai Lama pulled out of his planned trip, citing ill-health. Khama, however, has said he still intends to bring the spiritual leader to Gaborone soon.

 

Phane-mania

Mystery still surrounds the circumstances under which phane harvesters in Mathathane claimed to have been shot at by unidentified men. Additionally, the harvesters claimed to have seen two dead people in the bushes as they ran for their lives. In more phane-mania from earlier this month, harvesters stampeded in Selebi-Phikwe, jostling for licences, amidst reports that eight harvesters had already been bitten by snakes WTH!!!

 

Nkange lions outwit hunters

A pride of at least 10 lions outwitted a fully equipped professional search party in Nkange, which resorted to tricks such as playing a loudspeaker recording of lions eating their prey.

The lions had been terrorising Nkange and surrounding villages, killing 25 cows, 17 goats and six donkeys. By press time yesterday, the lions were still at large!

‘O tla imentioner’

Mmutlenyane Ramogaladi, a rape suspect, became an overnight social media sensation, after a video of his antics in a magistrate court went viral.

Ramogaladi ranted and raved at the magistrate about her proposed mention dates, dropping several catchphrases that have ignited social media.

T-shirts are allegedly being printed by the enterprising, while the police are allegedly hunting for the person who took the video. WTH!!

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