We welcome this High Court decision

On Friday, the High Court in Gaborone decided in favour of a number of foreign inmates who had challenged government’s decision not to provide them with ARV drugs.

Justice Bengbame Sechele ordered the government to provide ARVs to foreign inmates because it is a constitutional right to life.  In its arguments, the government had insisted that it was facing financial challenges, and that the applicants were convicted criminals who should not benefit from their crimes.  What was intriguing about the government’s stance, however, is the fact that it was providing the inmates with free treatment for opportunistic diseases such as tuberculosis and pneumonia.

In his ruling, the judge said the refusal to provide foreign prisoners with ARVs posed a danger to citizen inmates. Indeed, he was right. As a nation that still believes in the extended family, and where there is a lot of interaction, this immediately reminds us of our relatives, friends, and neighbours who were incarcerated and released after serving their time. Although we may not have the statistics, we are fully aware that many of these former inmates never stayed long before death befell them. Most of them were dying of tuberculosis or of some unknown disease. What the judge said – that the ultimate result of the denial or deprivation of ARVs to foreign inmates created a Catch 22 situation that could have long been avoided – is absolutely correct. It is for this reason that we support Friday’s ruling by the Gaborone High Court.

Editor's Comment
Women unite for progress

It underscores the indispensable role women play in our society, particularly in building strong households and nurturing families. The recognition of women as the bedrock of our communities is not just a sentiment; it's a call to action for all women to stand together and support each other in their endeavours.The society's aim to instil essential principles and knowledge for national development is crucial. By providing a platform for...

Have a Story? Send Us a tip
arrow up