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About the P10 million lEgal bill slapped on the UDC



NDABA GAOLATHE SAYS: The P10 million legal bill is not a UDC bill – it is our bill – it is an expense that every citizen (UDC or not) that cares about this nation should foot.
The UDC has a legal bill of P10 million, or probably more.

I see many comments on social media suggesting it is a deserved punishment for failing to concede the October 2019 elections.  This view is grossly myopic.  We don’t have to agree with the UDC about how to approach electoral grievances for us to realise that our democracy is at stake.  We should not allow our differences in approach to be exploited by apologists of the current system at the expense of our democracy.  These apologists will tell you, do not make a contribution to this legal bill because it is not yours, it is a bill that should be paid by those who approached the courts and hired the lawyers.  Far from it.

This is actually our bill, whether we are UDC or not.
It is a bill we all need to pay, whether you agreed with the UDC or you didn’t.  This is how nations are built.  This is how systems and checks and balances are nourished, and reconstructed.  Those who refuse to pay this bill will account one day – somebody will pay the bill, and they will claim the reigns of our country.   Our nation is under the clutch of the rich and powerful, because we refuse to pay for our democracy.  The rich and powerful pay for this democracy.  They clothe you with t-shirts at elections.  They pay the fuel for transporting voters to rallies and the polls.  They pay for the printing of manifestos and adverts in newspapers.  They pay for the campaign stages and the sound systems.  They pay because the real owners, the ordinary citizens of this land, refuse to pay.

The citizens refuse to pay because they say they are poor, they don’t have the money.  Citizens refuse to pay for democracy because they say politicians are corrupt, selfish and self seeking.  They refuse to pay because their preferred candidates are not on the ballot.  No one is too poor to pay for democracy; if everyone donated P10 per year, all of us, to a movement that represented our individual aspirations, this country would not be as vulnerable as we now are to the whims of the super-rich.  We need to cultivate a democracy that makes leaders account, and these court cases were part of that process.  We need to pay an insurance premium to ensure that no one in the future tries to rig any democratic process – these cases were part of that process too.  These cases were a raw reminder of the inadequacies of our institutions  and potentially the concentration of power in the executive – and so the need to reform, redesign and enhance our constitution as a nation.

We all need to participate in building of our nation, particularly our democratic and economic institutions. We need to contribute, financially as well, to democratic institutions including political parties.  We need to contribute to churches and to community organisations that build our nation.

Nna ke a go lathela sengwenyana.  It will not be much, mme ke a go lathela.  Don’t say I didn’t tell you, twenty years from now, that if you don’t contribute to this, someone will pay, and you will have built a culture of selling our country on the cheap.  Re tswanetse go hedisa mowa wa “ha di nkame.”Le tla nkomanya hela, mme ntlabo ke latlhetse.  Ke robala jaaka lesea bosigo, ka gore nna kea e dira thomo yame, sikitinyana same ke ya se lema, go sa kgathalesege gore lewa le lebega jang kana le nchakgaletse gole kae.

Ke le weno,
BANKS NDEBELE SAYS: Let’s contribute towards the UDC petitions legal Bill. Every patriotic Motswana and defender of democracy, you don’t necessarily have to be a UDC member to partake. This was a just affair, one that intended to straighten and protect a symbol of our pride- free and fair elections. I pledge an undisclosed amount towards settling the UDC legal bill.

TEBOGO MODISE SAYS: Bo Ndaba le mabina go tsholwa,o ne o emetse kwa o lebile Boko wa modimo a wa a tsoga jaanong o itira o mo utwelang bothoko, you want to build which nation e o paletsweng ke go thusa mokaukengwe wa gago go e build.

MOSHE BAELE SAYS: We wanted change but you deprived us the privilege, we decried the association with Kgama and we were ignored. We demanded report of the late Motswaledi and what we get from you guys was a shameful answers and we were told to bring prove that we contributed so we may be refunded. Today you come back again begging for people to contribute. You need to listen to your followers and stop acting like God messiah. We said it and we are saying it. Ignorance is like death. Setswana sa re letlota ga le nyelwe, jaanong re goga dijase re batla di karabo. You could be going around the country addressing the nation since you said is for our benefit le rona re le botse. Tanki motsamaisa tiro.

WARONA MOSIELELE SAYS: Re tewa gotwe puso e bolaile Sir-G re koleke go dirwe investigation, the report fails to be availed. They lie that elections are rigged, deliberately failing to comply with due process, and knowing very well that they are going to lose. They do so to give their gullible followers a reason to believe their lies – that the system is rotten hence their loss in court, as it is clear they (followers) don’t care, some are ignorant of course, about court procedures. The least they could do for these gullible malcontents would be to at least avail the evidence of vote rigging they claim to possess before they siphon more money from them again. I know they have no evidence of vote rigging of course, it is all lies; very expensive lies.

BRUNO PHILLIMON SAYS: 10 million wa UDC nna ga ke di tsene ga e kake yare ba palelwa ke go duela office ya party, e bo ba re ba ka duela di costs tsa court.

JONATHAN SIKWANE SAYS: Fa o sena madi a go koleka didimala. Le ko magaeng go ntse fela jalo fa go biditswe ‘meeting’ wa koleke re neela ba ba nang le madi sebaka sa go bua. Lesa go rasa ga ona madi. Finish & Klaar. Ba ba pelotlhomogi e bile ba na le madi ba tlaa kolekela UDC gore e phimole sekoloto sa yone sa ditsheko. Kea leboga Motsamaisa-tiro.

COMFORT RAMATEBELE SAYS: Re taa koleka thene milone wa khote mme re taa le gakolla baeteledipele gore hanne e se go thubega ga lona, nkabe le fentse dithopho go sena bo koleke. Le batona laa nkutwa!

TSHWARI THAKO SAYS: I will only contribute after the evidence of rigging has been availed for the public to see. It is very necessary. Akere we had evidence prepared for the case though we were not accorded an opportunity by the courts? Let’s take that evidence to the people so they can be convinced of those rigging allegations, because now it remains allegation until we all see evidence. It can be put in one of the weekly newspapers every week until all the information is availed. Double voters names must also be listed gore ba votile kae le kae. Especially Gantsi North because photocopies had already been made. Name and shame.

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Yvonne Mooka



This year marks my 10th year as an employee of The Botswana Guardian and The Midweek Sun newspapers, under the CBET Pty Ltd company.

I still remember one afternoon of 2010 when I was in Francistown. I was waiting for my graduation from the University of Botswana where I did Bachelor of Media Studies. I had just started a freelancing job with Mmegi in the Ghetto when one of the Guardian/Sun managers Tlotlo Mbazo called me offering a job opportunity. See, during our time, UB newspaper- then known as The UB Horizon was hyped and big.

We distributed it across newsrooms in the country. In addition to this, one of my former Journalism lecturers Julia Cass had advised us to always cut our articles and keep portfolios and later send them across media houses for opportunities. So when MmaMbazo called me about an opportunity that had come up, I knew she had seen my work that I had submitted a few months before closing at UB.

Coming into the Guardian/Sun newsroom the first days was exciting yet challenging at the same time. I found many male colleagues that were also very loud and pushy. Intimidating. At times, annoying. Some were old, reminding me of the set up in international newsrooms where journalists are older. The 24 year-old me then was timid and emotional…but zealous and curious. I was impressed however by the female journos that oozed energy and passion.

The truth about the media industry is that there was a time when it was male-dominated. Women were thrown into light beats and strong ones were tackled by males. Though it was the case with Guardian/Sun then, seeing the likes of Phemelo Ramaribeng nee Ramasu pursue News was encouraging. Her human interest stories to a larger extent  contributed to my love for Human Rights issues.

I worked under the leadership of great men who all shaped my career in special ways. The likes of peculiar Mpho Dibeela who has since gone into newspaper ownership; Mike Mothibi, the sophisticated writer with a passion for farming; courageous Abraham Motsokono who called a spade a spade and not a big spoon; fatherly Ernest Moloi who helped build resilience in me; Mbazo, woman of the board who leads tenderly but with a stern posture; Justice Kavahematui with a very calm demeanor; Joe Brown-Tlhaselo the perfectionist who pays attention to every detail in the paper – in fact it was Joe-Brown who welcomed me the first day by offering me a chair and lunch! And then there is  Boitshepo Balozwi, my editor-turned-friend who every now and then blesses me with pearls of wisdom when ‘the devil wants to lie,’ as well as Dikarabo Ramadubu, our moving encyclopaedia.

Still under this list falls Beatrice Mbulawa, the magnificent General Manager who came with a unique style of managing a media house as a finance-steel lady. Joel Konopo and Ntibinyane Ntibinyane have always been deep hence their now establishment of the bullish INK Centre for Investigative Journalism. In 2012, they took me to Amabunghane Centre for Investigative Journalism in South Africa where my mindset changed altogether. That was an investment that I will always use in my Journalism. Douglas Tsiako also deserves recognition for always believing in me. Special mention of Ditiro Motlhabane for always putting me on my toes about my stories as my News Editor.

My colleagues across every department in The Guardian/Sun throughout the decade, both new and old, have been fascinating. The team is a rare, winning breed. Group dynamics is as real as it gets but I can say unfazed, that I learn a lot from every single individual in our newsroom. The energy here is right. It’s amazing.

So much can be said about my decade in our newsroom. Perhaps, my number one lesson is that of servitude. Journalists are servants. They should serve. At church we say EBENEZER – Thus far the Lord has brought me. Thank you.

Facebook/Instagram: Yvonne Tshepang Mooka
LinkedIn: Yvonne Mooka
Twitter: @yvonnemooka

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The thrill of being boys in the fields of plenty

Matshediso Fologang



Boys will always be boys. This weekend after a long time I took a walk from my maternal ancestral mekgoro/ditlaagane to the southwest, much along the recently ploughed masimo. In this journey all memories of the early 1960s came to mind.

Then boys were generally a law unto themselves as they could move all over and invade the masimo and take ripe magapu and nche (water melons and sweet reed) without the owner’s consent. Such was known as “go itaya khutu.” It was never considered stealing but helping our boyish greed. This weekend as I traversed these fields with green ripening products I couldn’t help but reminisce about my youth. The things we did then?

We could just raid a field and help ourselves with whatever was ripe. Such acts were punishable by caning of the wrong doers. Still such did not deter the boys from the adventure. Such was the things the boys did with such impunity. Such acts of thuggery were only lessened by some fear of certain fields that were known to be owned by dingaka (traditional doctors) and baloi (witches). We had serious superstitious beliefs that we knew we could become crippled or die if we dared help ourselves with produce from such masimo.

Walking through these masimo, I went deeper into the area and started remembering the past like it happened yesterday. Activities I was part of just came back to mind like these happened yesterday. I recalled one such day we were herding clan cattle and goats. Around midday we realised our morning fill was no more. We were a bit hungry. How could we be hungry in the midst of plenty? Boys being boys, we raided the next nearest tshimo. We helped ourselves with water melons.

We carried our loot into the bushes nearby. We had a feast.  Just as we were ready to leave, one of us came up with a story that the old lady whose field we had raided was a moloi. It was revealed that she would find out who had stolen her melons. Panic and fear gripped us. She was going to get us all dead. She would just doctor our footprints. Such stories we had heard in our daily lives but for us to be potential victims was the worst nightmare then.

Living in a superstitious society then, the things we did then make me just laugh today when I look back. On this adventurous day we drove the cattle and goats up to the nearest hillocks. Something bad happened. As we had almost forgotten the earlier fear, we now raided the trees for indigenous fruits. We climbed up these trees to pick the fruits. One of the boys accidentally fell down and injured his back.

Being products of a superstitious clan the only explanation we could make for this accident was the curse (boloi) of the owner of the melons we had earlier stolen. The next problem we faced was to explain the visible pain our colleague endured. Tradition had it then that anyone who had fallen from a tree would eat his meals from a bed pan until he healed. We all bullied the victim not to show signs of pain.. We were cruel and it was all about being boys. Such was being boys.

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