Khama using DIS to purge BDP operatives?

Staff Writer
FRANCISTOWN: President Ian Khama is accused of using Directorate of Intelligence and Security (DIS) sleuths to probe alleged acts of impropriety by some ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) operatives.

This follows a controversial report that Khama, who is also the leader of the ruling BDP, allegedly presented at the Monday BDP central committee (CC) in Gaborone.

The report, which amongst others recommended the suspension of legislator Botsalo Ntuane, activists Kabo Morwaeng and Sidney Pilane from the BDP, apparently shocked even members of the Khama-led Central Committee.

Mmegi is informed that sometime last year, Khama informed members of the CC about the need to investigate allegations that some members of the party connived with the opposition to frustrate other party members.
On Monday, Khama reportedly entered the boardroom wielding a report that other central committee members did not have.

When he later read out his report, the guilty parties turned out to be Botsalo Ntuane, KaboMorwaeng and attorney Sidney Pilane. Apparently the investigations were carried out without the knowledge of other central committee members and those involved.

The trio's main offence it is alleged, was their purported connivance with the opposition to lobby for their suspended factional friend, Gomolemo Motswaledi to be a Specially Elected MP.

Motswaledi, who was the BDP secretary general before he was slapped with a five-year ban from the party, also eyed the Gaborone Central parliamentary seat before the party disqualified him following his suspension.

BDP insiders have pointed out that the whole BDP central committee was never told who was investigating the targeted constituencies and individual politicians involved.This has since precipitated allegations of the DIS involvement in BDP internal affairs. The man accused of the dirty job is Khama himself.

"This was one of the most secretive investigations the BDP has carried out. We have always had internal investigations conducted but the public has always known who did what," said BDP insider who preferred anonymity. He also challenged his leaders to state the names of the investigators.

Worse, the investigators never consulted those directly affected by the result of the investigations. "The trio is accused, they were investigated and found guilty, without affording them an opportunity of hearing their side of the story," added another concerned BDP supporter.

Although the trio reportedly facing suspension as recommended by

Khama were in no mood to comment, it is however, common knowledge that they have received information about their impending suspension.

Although, the current BDP central committee is dominated by members of the so-called A-Team, who are mostly 'yes-men/women' Mmegi has learnt that contrary to expectations, one member reportedly questioned Khama as to whether those who conducted the investigations ever talked to the people involved but the answer was in the negative.

"Then that would be wrong," a source that attended the Monday meeting quoted a central committee member (whose name is withheld for now) responding to Khama.

There is a growing concern that Khama wants to lead a central committee that simply rubberstamps his decisions, without internal debate.

Another BDP source, associated with Barataphathi, was insistent that the BDP investigation of the trio was done by the DIS.

" These people miss the point, they don't know that as a faction of the BDP we also have people who sympathise with us even in the DIS," wondered an insider.

Fed up with factionalism in the BDP, which is apparently refusing to go away, Khama is allegedly bent on ridding the party of politicians he feels are troublemakers.

Ntuane, Morwaeng, Pilane, Guma Moyo, Daniel Kwelagobe, Wynter Mmolotsi, Tawana Moremi, Patrick Masimolole and Mmoloki Raletobana are possible candidates for this 'hit list'.Quizzed if President Khama has ever instructed the DIS to investigate some BDP operatives after last year's general elections, the head of the DIS, Isaac Kgosi preferred to remain mum.

" I am not at liberty to talk to the media about the operations of the DIS and in particular whether we were ever instructed to mount any investigations of alleged impropriety by BDP operatives," he said before hanging up.

Contacted for comment yesterday, BDP executive assistant who deputises party executive secretary, Dr Comma Serema preferred to say, " I cannot deny or confirm" reports that Khama used the DIS to purge BDP members.  He however, referred this publication to his senior, Serema, who was attending a meeting in Mochudi and was not taking calls on his mobile phone.




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