The Monitor :: Tlale Claims Unfair Dismissal By Police
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Last Updated
Wednesday 21 February 2018, 17:14 pm.
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Tlale Claims Unfair Dismissal By Police

For three years Ofentse Tlale, 28, had dedicated his life to his work under the Botswana Police Service (BPS) stationed as a special constable at Mogoditshane police station.
By Pini Bothoko Mon 29 Jan 2018, 09:55 am (GMT +2)
The Monitor :: Tlale Claims Unfair Dismissal By Police








Now, Tlale from Molepolole is pleading for his job back after his employment contract expired and was not renewed last November following allegations of professional misconduct against him.

Recently he stormed The Monitor office to express his grievances of ‘unfair dismissal’ from BPS where he was employed as a special constable back in November 2015.

Narrating his plight, Tlale said in December 2016 he was called from Otse Police College with immediate effect where he was enrolled for training to become a professional police officer.

“It was on December 13 when I was summoned to the college admin office and head of recruitment disclosed the bad news to me. She told me that she had received a savigram informing them that I should return back to the police station as I had pending disciplinary issues. This came as a shock to me because I had departed the station without any complaint. I asked the head of recruitment to plead with the station to forward them the charge sheet, but that never materialised as they insisted that I should return,” Tlale said.

He said that the head of recruitment checked his file, but there was no document stating any disciplinary issue pending. He said the head of recruitment at the college contacted the Officer Commanding (OC) for No: 13, Senior Superintendent Counsel Moyo who claimed not to be aware of such savigram.

“Later that day, I was forced to walk from the police college with my luggage to the main road as the college could not transport me back to the station. The following day I reported for duty as usual and asked the head of the special constable department to set up a meeting with the assistant Superintendent, Zachariah Tshenyego who was the acting station commander in the absence of the station commander then, who happened to have sent the savigram to the college. He (Tshenyego) refused to meet with me,” Tlale said.

An accountant by profession, Tlale said after a few days of confusion, the head of special constable department called him to his office and gave him his suspension letter indicating that he was faced with allegations of professional misconduct.

“Immediately after receiving the letter, police officers were ordered to escort me to my house so that I can hand in police items (police uniform, police identity card, arm band and name tag). This shocked me because the letter said I was suspended not fired from work. I pleaded with them to give me the charge sheet stating the offence I was alleged to have committed, but they failed to do so until the 90 days of suspension lapsed without any charge laid against me. I kept on following the Mogoditshane station commander, Agreement Mapeu asking for the charge sheet to no avail,” Tlale said.

He stated that on January 31, 2017 he decided to seek legal assistance from Legal Wise and his lawyer advised him to request an appointment with the Police Commissioner to

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disclose his grievances, but that failed as he was told to follow protocol.

“According to police protocol, I cannot just send the letter to the Commissioner. It should be sent by the police station commander, but he refused to do so, stating that I was still being investigated. On March 20, I went back to see Mapeu. I asked him since it seems like they are failing to give me the charge sheet why can’t they give me the reinstatement letter or something, but he failed to provide me with an answer,” Tlale said.

He added that on March 23 he received a call, went to the station and he was given the charge sheet outside the stipulated suspension days. He said even after receiving the charge sheet, he had to wait for four months without any progress in the case.

“I followed them up until I went to see the chairperson of the disciplinary committee who was the then station commander of Central Police, Superintendent Vincent Pitseetsile. On July 25, I was told that the case will be heard on August 25, but I told them that I would appear for the disciplinary hearing under protest because I was never cautioned or given the charge sheet whilst serving my three months’ suspension. I was not even given any witness statements.

“I had already pleaded not guilty to the offence. My trial was on October 10, but whilst the case was still ongoing my two-year contract expired on November 14 and they decided not to renew it, something that was a rare occurrence. I suspected that they were playing delay tactics knowing that my contract was expiring that year and they would not renew it before the completion of the case. I feel that they ignored my constitutional rights because everyone is innocent until proven guilty,” Tlale said.

He said that he was shocked because they did not even mention reasons they could not renew his contract.

“I was framed. I never committed the offence. Even the person that my co-accused and I allegedly solicited P2,000 from as a bribe never met me before. The man is a Zimbabwean, one Evans Chipangura. He told the disciplinary board that he only knew my co-accused and had given him money while he was with two other police officers. He insisting, however, that he has never met me before. I was unfairly dismissed and I am pleading for help from the Minister of Defence, Justice and Security, Shaw Kgathi because I want my job back,” Tlale said.

He said what transpired has affected him emotionally, psychologically and financially because he was pushed out. He disclosed his endless love for policing, to serve and defend his country, which is why he seeks help. Asked about Tlale’s grievances, the Botswana Police Service’s public relations officer, Dipheko Motube told The Monitor that his case was administrative and was an internal matter that he could not discuss with the media.

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