Tributes pour in for Ketlhoilwe


FRANCISTOWN: Councillors here are mourning the death of Moselepula ward councillor Reuben Ketlhoilwe who died on May 2, 2022 after a long illness.

Ketlhoilwe of the Botswana Congress Party (BCP), an affiliate of the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC), was elected councillor in a by-election in 2018, following the death of Lechedzani Modenga of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP). The 60-year-old substantively became the councilor for Moselewapula in 2019 after winning the ward in a general election. Francistown mayor and also councillor for Satellite South, Godisang Radisigo, is devastated by the passing of the Nata-born councillor. He said they were robbed of a great leader who has over the past years contributed to the development of the city. Godisang said Ketlhoilwe have worked tirelessly for the residents of Moselewapula and the second city as a whole. He added that the late councillor was a straight talker and always offered constructive criticism.

The mayor also described the late councillor as a humble, respectful and always demonstrating admirable leadership styles. According to him, councilor Ketlhoilwe was a fantastic political opponent and they worked together on council issues albeit, on different sides of the council chamber. He further said: “He represented the opposition side but whenever we debated in council he would oppose with a solution. His passing is a great loss to the council, the community and politics.” The Satellite North councillor also shared that the late leader was so down to earth and always willing to offer help and advice to their members including himself.

Lastly, the Francistown mayor indicated that above all, he prioritised the welfare of his people. One of Ketlhoilwe's motions, which he believes is close to his heart, is the establishment for a dual carriage flyover to be built by the Railway line to Gerald in order to reduce traffic congestion in the area. Tshwaragano ward councillor Gaone Majere of the Alliance for Progressives (AP) described his colleague as a unifier in the council. He was devastated by the 60-year-old's departure and described him as a humble peacemaker and a father figure to many through his advice, both personal and political wise. Majere stated that the late councillor was very intelligent and understood the assignment the people gave him. He rated Ketlhoilwe as one of the best councillors who represented his people very well.

The Tshwaragano ward councillor considers the late councillor as a great testament to his work ethic, his character and his devotion to civic leadership. He shared that the visionary leader worked with them without favour despite their political affiliations and differences. Councillor for Boikhutso ward Imphimethus Mabutho described Ketlhoilwe as a visionary born leader. He said he was a smart thinker and stood for what he believed in. Boikhutso ward leader shared that the deceased was hungry to serve his people through his debates in council, which were done in a professional approach and thorough research. Mabutho added: “He was the one who came up with that motion for Minister Eric Molale to step down.

The motion was then adopted and as an unusual development from the opposition, the ruling party members and the independent did not oppose the motion.” Earlier during the week, the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) issued a statement indicating that in Ketlhoilwe, the BCP has lost a gallant and dedicated cadre.

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