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BOPEU acting president warns against 'illegal meeting'

TSAONE BASIMANEBOTLHE
Mogwera PIC: KENNEDY RAMOKONE
The Botswana Public Employees Union (BOPEU) faction led by Olefile Monakwe, who is now acting president, says it will take action against any members of their National Executive Committee (NEC) who attend today’s ‘illegal meeting’.

The allegedly suspended BOPEU president, Masego Mogwera, has called for an NEC meeting today to discuss the general secretary and deputy secretary general’s contracts, forensic audit, impending court cases, involvement of staff in union politics and union board representation. Mogwera and the general secretary, Topias Marenga, were kicked out of union office last week pending investigation.

 “It is true the special NEC meeting is going on today at Blue Tree in Gaborone. Nothing has changed regarding the purported suspension until the matter is resolved,” Marenga said. He said he is still the union general secretary until the issue is resolved.

Monakwe said: “We are not going to attend that illegal meeting called by suspended members. Our union’s constitution is very clear; those people do not have powers to call meetings. We will take action against any members who attend that illegal meeting.

There must be order in every organisation”.  According to resolutions by the National Executive Committee held last Saturday, they want the NEC to investigate allegations that Mogwera misled the union by alleging that the Board of Directors of Babereki Investments as a collective, was not aware of transactions that involved investments, loans in subsidiaries and associate companies, when in fact there is evidence of documents she signed indicating her involvement in the decision making.

“The NEC believes that Mogwera in her capacity as the president of BOPEU and or representing the NEC of

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BOPEU thus being in possession of the Forensic Audit report, which was sanctioned by BOPEU, deliberately refused to share the report with the NEC. It is this belief by the NEC members that creates discomfort around her as a leader,” reads another resolution. They also resolved that by choosing to use the Auditors to make oral presentations instead of a written report with findings is contrary to tradition, norm and legal focus.

The NEC members also bemoaned that Mogwera took the National General Congress (NGC) to Kasane without considering the financial implications, which resulted in the organisation being in financial distress.

She is also accused of failing to call a special congress by February as directed by the congress held in Kasane. The NEC wants a power of attorney to be issued to deal with transfers of four regional chairpersons who received their transfers last Friday when they were supposed to attend the NEC meeting.

Marenga was suspended with immediate effect pending investigations following allegations that his contract expired in 2017 and has not been renewed.   He is also accused of signing a development agreement with Quality Builders without a NEC resolution and did not submit it to the NEC for ratification.  He also stands accused of involvement in union politics by publicly campaigning for and against other NEC members, which in itself brings clout of credibility of the office he holds.



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