FRANCISTOWN: Members of the opposition on Saturday decried what they termed “a deliberate” snub of former president Ian Khama from appearing on national broadcast media platforms – Btv, RB1 and RB2 – even though he is doing philanthropy work.
Officiating at the handing over of a house that was reconstructed after it was gutted by fire last year in December at Gerald Estates, the Member of Parliament for Bobonong Taolo Lucas cried out that the Department of Broadcasting Services (DBS) is deliberately not giving coverage to Khama despite the philanthropic work that the former president is doing.
At the official launch of a football team, Gerald Estates All Stars and handing over of a house to Lebogang Zebra whose house was gutted by fire last year, Lucas intimated that there was a deliberate political ploy by DBS not to cover Khama for political expediency by the ruling regime.
“You will never see Ian Khama in Botswana Television or hear him in RB 1 and 2 when he is donating to a needy cause. On the contrary, you always see the powers that be when they are donating trivial things. I don’t know why this is happening,” Lucas said to which Khama clearly nodded his head in approval.
Lucas encouraged people to embrace the culture of helping others who are in need since it is in sync with Setswana culture.
Another opposition activist and councillor for Moselewapula ward at Gerald Estates, Reuben Kethoilwe, hauled the DBS over hot coals for what he said was a deliberate strategy to not cover all activities that the former president and ruling party archrival,
Said Kethoilwe: “Khama has promised that he will continue helping the needy pre and post his presidency. He has kept that promise because you always see him week in and out lending out his hand in needy causes. But while he is doing this, you will never see the DBS covering those events ever since he left the presidency. I think that DBS is deliberately snubbing Khama of coverage on the pretext that he may not have told them of his schedule. But if it is so, I plead with the former president to give DBS his public schedule so that they can also cover him just like they are doing to the Masisi-led administration. Our common goals as a nation should supersede our personal or partisan interests.”
During the auspicious event, the Leader of Opposition in Parliament (LOO) and Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) vice president Dumelang Saleshando, who was wearing a replica jersey of Argentina soccer team, also made a cameo appearance.
Saleshando, much to the delight of people who attended the event, told the crowd that he was not a good footballer player during his formative years but he was just wearing the Argentine jersey to solely to honour Argentine football star Diego Maradona who passed on recently.