When Chiefs were Kings, there was no republic

Botswana has often been hailed as a democratic example that is a cut above the rest.

Many writers, social scientists and political commentators ascribe the well built democracy to the traditions of the kgotla system which they view as the critical foundation of our current system of governance. I think in a lot of ways, the two systems are as far apart as the south is from the north.

From several history books that date as far back as the beginning of the colonial era, Batswana chiefs had a good stranglehold on their subjects. Bogosi (chieftaincy or monarchy as you may prefer to call it) was more draconian than many of us have ever imagined. Before we delve deeper into the subject of bogosi, allow me to define the term in a more precise way. “King” Mogomela who is a self proclaimed “King” of Batswana argues that there is a serious deficiency in the way we run our country in regard to bogosi and he blames the colonialists for that error. Mogomela argues the reason why Botswana was the only one of the three satellite colonies of Britain who could not have a king, while Lesotho and Swaziland enjoyed the rule of monarchs.

Editor's Comment
Happy Independence!

We are 56 years old and what do we have to show for it? Looking at where Botswana started and where it is today, there are a lot of developments, but whether the developments match the number of years we have enjoyed as a country is a topic for another day.The fact that cannot be denied is we have seen major developments, but we are still lacking in several pertinent areas.Our beautiful country imports almost everything. We import fuel, food,...

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