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Maruapula 'person of interest' in kidnapping rap

STAFF WRITER
Maruapula
Broadhurst Police are reportedly investigating Mompati Maruapula, a former private secretary to the then Minister of Education and Skills Development, Unity Dow for kidnapping a businessman.

According to police sources, Maruapula is “a person of interest” in the kidnapping of the businessman by men pretending to be police officers at Gaborone College of Law and Professional Studies. 

Apparently, the businessman has too much information on the illicit dealings of certain individuals, allegedly including those of Maruapula while at the Education ministry.

Sometime in February, Maruapula was brought in for questioning regarding what he may knew about the kidnappers.

It is said that Maruapula was present during the kidnapping and was in fact in a back room watching the incident on a monitor connected to the CCTV.

“On that fateful day, the businessman was supposed to meet the owner of the school, but as he was waiting in the waiting area, he was approached by two men claiming to be police officers who wanted to take him away for questioning. The plan was to take him quietly without anyone noticing and that they would take him to a bush somewhere and kill him,” a source said.

However, their plan was foiled when the businessman resisted and caused a commotion.  He started shouting in front of the multitudes of onlookers, demanding that if the men were at all in police, they should be in uniform as they take him away.

Eventually, the two men dragged the businessman out and threw him into a car before speeding off. In the car they continued to assault the businessman telling him that they were going to give him a painful death because he had resisted coming silently with them.

“However, luck was on the businessman’s side, because a Good Samaritan amongst the onlookers decided to follow their vehicle.

“And when they realised that their vehicle

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was being tailed, they had to abandon their mission and dumped the businessman near the Sebele area.

“Consequently, Maruapula who was coincidentally there was called in to be questioned about what he was doing there and if he had any relationship with the kidnappers.  Notwithstanding, his statement was contradictory.” Initially he claimed he knew for a fact that the people who had kidnapped the businessman were police officers because they had called him on his phone.

“He said that they had used a cellphone. When the police asked him to give them the cell number, he changed and said it was a landline.

“He then later changed his final statement to say that it was a private number. Currently, the police have attained a court order to study Maruapula’s calls on that day.”

Maruapula is no stranger to investigations.  The Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) is reportedly investigating him for corruption at the then Ministry of Education and Skills Development.

It has emerged that Maruapula resigned abruptly from his plum position last year after being in the public service since 2014. 

This was after whistleblowers blew his cover to the DCEC that he did not possess the requisite qualifications to work as the private secretary.

He is also investigated for possible corruption at the ministry regarding Target 20000, a flagship programme for Dow.

Apparently, he received large amounts of pula to the tune of millions together with two known lawyers from institutions in exchange for students.

Reached for comment, Maruapula denied knowledge of the kidnapping investigation against him. The investigating officer referred Mmegi to his authorities that could not be reached for comment.



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