Police ‘guard State House amid arson threats’


Botswana Police Service (BPS) has placed officers at the State House to protect the President’s residence after intelligence information indicated disgruntled youths want to burn the building down, Mmegi has learnt.

It is alleged the angry group is unhappy with the high unemployment rate, the closure of the entertainment industry and the suspension of alcohol sales. According to a reliable source, the concerned youth group is frustrated that since COVID-19, youth problems have compounded while not being taken seriously, nor have they been addressed by President Mokgweetsi Masisi. It is said some of the aggrieved youths want to demonstrate while others want the State House burnt down to drive the message home.

“It is not a secret that some youth are unhappy that their problems are not addressed. It will be an unfortunate situation that some believe that attacking the State House is a way of trying to be heard or their complaints to be taken to consideration,” a source said.

Also, there have been recent complaints from young people regarding the slow pace of the vaccination rollout amid rising COVID-19 infections and deaths.

The other contentious issue the youth express is the extension of the State of Public Emergency (SoE), which ends in September amid fresh reports President Masisi wants to push through for another.

The youths blame the government for failing to take action against companies that continue to retrench employees despite the SoE being in place.

Asked about the alleged security risk and threat by the disgruntled youths, the Directorate of Intelligence and Security) DIS spokesperson Edward Robert told Mmegi yesterday: “The police are the ones who can respond to your questions regarding the matter. We cannot confirm nor deny issues of intelligence”.

Botswana Police spokesperson, assistant commissioner Dipheko Motube had promised to respond to questions before press time but never did, as he claimed that he was still consulting with his superiors.

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