Ntlo Ya Dikgosi must stay away from politics

Masisi and Gaborone during the Dikgosi orientation workshop recently PIC. KAGISO ONKATSWITSE
Masisi and Gaborone during the Dikgosi orientation workshop recently PIC. KAGISO ONKATSWITSE

Vice President, Mokgweetsi Masisi, has implored dikgosi to refrain from using bogosi to serve political interests. Masisi told the chiefs that they should not attack members of the executive under the pretext of free speech.

Speaking at the dikgosi orientation workshop after Monday’s meeting of the Ntlo Ya Dikgosi (House of Chiefs), he encouraged the traditional leaders to uphold the law and strengthen good governance.

 He said the democratic dispensation is deeply rooted in the Kgotla structure through the promotion of freedom of expression.

However, the system ought to nurture democracy without the politics. He said while the Kgotla system embraces the spirit of, ‘mmualebe o a bo a bua la gagwe’, the Ntlo Ya Dikgosi should not be used as a platform to unduly attack the members of the executive, each other and other stakeholders “who interact with us from time to time”.

Masisi spoke strongly against the utilisation of the Kgotla for intentional or non-intentional politicking.

He reminded dikgosi of their pertinent role in the running on the country, the promotion of cultural expression and national unity.

He told chiefs to confine their activities to what the law has granted them. He said that a clear distinction be marked between the roles of Ntlo Ya Dikgosi and Parliament.

“I have observed that in the past, the lines of duty seem to be getting blurred, let us elevate the quality of our leadership by showing greater understanding,” he said.

He expressed hope that the workshop would ensure that Members of the House fully appreciated the significance of their role.  Chairperson of Ntlo Ya Dikgosi, Kgosi Puso Gaborone called for a healthy relationship between bogosi and the executive to ensure that the traditional leadership had value and social utility.

He said the Kgotla system, having been in existence before the dawn of modern democracy, was invaluable for the pillars of cooperation, dialogue and togetherness, which needed to be preserved.

These pillars built the foundation of what has become democratic Botswana, Gaborone stated.  “We want to raise the profile, efficiency and effectiveness of Ntlo Ya Dikgosi,” he said.  Gaborone stated that the institution should be a well respected and highly regarded one in the next five years.

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