Mmegi Online :: DPP fails to get Khama to speak
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Last Updated
Tuesday 20 November 2018, 13:46 pm.
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DPP fails to get Khama to speak

Count 3, among the corruption charges put to former Debswana celebrity executive, Louis Nchindo, might fly out the window should the Directorate of Public Prosecutions fail to obtain a statement from President Ian Khama.
By Staff Writer Tue 20 Nov 2018, 20:34 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: DPP fails to get Khama to speak








By 2 o'clock yesterday, the DPP was still struggling to get a statement from Khama, vice president under Festus Mogae's tenure as president.  They failed.

The DPP had orders from Gaborone Village chief magistrate, Lot Moroka, that at that hour they should have collected all the statements requested of Mogae's cabinet, relating to the case- if they intend to use the statements during the case.

Magistrate Moroka had ordered that the statements should have been passed on to the defence by March 26. 

Legal experts believe that Khama's evidence could prove vital in the determination of Nchindo's guilt or innocence in relation to the third  charge in the case involving the cream of the management leadership of the country's leading mining conglomerate, once the number one revenue earner.

The third count alleges that then vice president; Ian Khama was given false information. According to the charge sheet, Nchindo and Joseph Malope Matome are accused of having misled Khama about the identity of a company called Tourism Development Consortium and its objectives.

This, it is alleged, was done as part of a scheme to defraud the government of plot 55720 in Gaborone.

Chief prosecution counsel, Kgosietsile Ngakaagae, told Mmegi that even if they did not get the president's statement, they had nevertheless told investigators at the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) that they needed a statement from the president.

Yesterday, DCEC director, Tymon Katlholo told Mmegi that he had not received any advise from the DPP regarding getting a witness statement from the president.

As the investigating body in the case, the DCEC would procedurally be the one to take witness statements including Khama's," lawyers advise.

Katlholo, however, hastened to indicate that it was still at the discretion of the DPP to pursue procurement of Khama's statement if that was in the best interests of their case.

"They may decide that they are fine with the evidence they have and the statement won't add anything extra," said Katlholo, warning

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against attaching too much importance to the president's statement.

"We have not as yet made up our mind as to whether we need a statement from the president," said Ngakaagae, suggesting that the court had not ordered the prosecution to collect a statement from the president, but rather, to give the witness statements it already had to the defence.

Since Moroka ordered the prosecution to avail witness statements to the defence, it was expected that the DPP would collect Khama's. It is speculated that the DPP may have failed to get a statement from the president because he is unwilling to give it.

Some even say there is pressure at government enclave that everything should be done to ensure the president does not come before copurt as this could be embarrasing.

Former South African President Nelson Mandela did it during the Louis luyt case and he was scathed.

Moroka had also ordered the prosecution to provide the defence with witness statements of Vice President, Mompati Merafhe, ministers Daniel Kwelagobe (Presidential Affairs), Dikgakgamatso Seretse (Defence and Security), Phandu Skelemani (Foreign Affairs) and others whom the state intends to call as witnesses.

"We are doing our best to abide by the court ruling," adding that the prosecution was making an audit of all the relevant documents to see if there were any documents they had not given to the defence.

Moroka had further ordered the state to finalise its list of witnesses which should have been made available to Nchindo's legal team by March 26.

Yesterday, information out of Collins and Newman, who are Nchindo's lawyers, suggested that they have not received anything from the prosecution.

The accused are set to appear for mention on April 28, next month. The case is set to resume in July.

Former Debswana managing director, Louis Goodwill Nchindo, ex-group secretary, Joseph Malope Matome, former Debswana communications chief, Jacob Sesinyi and Nchindo's son, Louis Garvas are facing a total of 36 counts of corruption.

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