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Molf accuses political parties of nepotism

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The ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) and opposition parties have been accused of practising nepotism at their constituency offices at the expense of other deserving unemployed citizens.

Former Member of Parliament for Gaborone West Robert Molefhabangwe did not mince his words in an exclusive interview with The Midweek Sun as he said that those employed in various constituency offices have been handpicked since they are friends of the sitting Members of Parliament (MP).

When fully staffed, a constituency office has five employees comprising an office Administrator, Secretary, Messenger/cleaner and two security guards. Allegedly, all of them get the job on the basis that they campaigned for the incumbent MP towards the election.

All parties including Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD), Botswana National Front (BNF) and Botswana Congress Party (BCP) are guilty of this practice, says the outspoken former MP.

“When an MP employs a friend or relative or only members of his or her political party, then this is broad daylight robbery as, out there, there are better qualified job seekers ready to work. I have always maintained that constituency offices should not represent any party but the constituency as a whole since there are a lot of citizens who are not involved in politics as well as foreigners. A constituency is comprised of those who might be against the MP and those who are neutral and it is very important for MPs to desist from employing their friends and party mates since the office belongs to the government and not any party,’’ he said.

Molefhabangwe said that during his tenure as MP, he lost a lot of friends from his party by insisting that all citizens must be given an opportunity to work at constituency offices irrespective of political party affiliation.

When contacted for a comment on the allegations of partisan employment, BCP Publicity Secretary Dithapelo Keorapetse said that it is not the policy of his party to employ constituency office civil servants basing on political party affiliation. Keorapetse said when they employ constituency office workers they do not require one’s party affiliation as this is tantamount to favouritism. “What I am aware of is that we advertise as per government procedure and pick any candidate who qualifies for the job,” he said.

A BCP member who did not want to be disclosed said that all workers employed at various constituency offices are linked to the party in control of the constituency. “Comrade Keorapetse knows very well that no political party will ever employ an outsider into its constituency offices. Those who are normally given the job are derived from the campaign team of the MP as he knows them very well and it would be suicidal to do otherwise,” the source explained.

He added that sometimes conflicts arise when the other members of the campaign team feel they are more deserving than those who got the jobs ahead of them. Reportedly, the fallout becomes so serious that they invest a lot of time and other resources to decampaign the MP in the next election. Deputy President for BMD Wynter Mmolotsi explained that there is a difference between a political party member and a political party activist.

“At BMD, we have no problem to employ any opposition card carrying member as long as they are not activists where they are coming from. Normally a simple card carrying member is always neutral as compared to an activist whose aim is to appease his party at any cost. It will be illogical for me as an MP to recommend an opposition activist in my office since they will by all means work very hard to make my office look unproductive so that their party can wrestle the constituency from me. Those who are simply card carrying members are considered since this is a government job open to all Batswana,’’ he said.

When quizzed to disclose party affiliation of his office employees, he claimed not to be aware of their political affiliation as he said that as per government policy, they should not employ based on partisan lines.

Moeti Mohwasa the BNF spokesperson explained that constituency office workers should be those trusted by their MP. “A constituency office administrator is more like a personal assistant to the MP and this should be a person known and trusted by the MP for the smooth operation of the office. MPs have the right to choose carefully for civil servants to work for them,’’ he said.

He pointed out that their position at BNF is that all constituency workers should be employed following the laid down employment procedure for civil servants. Efforts to solicit a comment from BDP Secretary General Botsalo Ntuane hit a snag at press time as his mobile was off air.

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VACANCY: President of the UDC

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Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) President, Advocate Sidney Pilane says Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) does not have a President.

He revealed this week that UDC leader, Advocate Duma Boko was given the leadership of the coalition on a temporary arrangement. Advocate Pilane who was addressing the media this week, following the expulsion of his party from the UDC stated that in the buildup to 2014 general elections it was agreed that Advocate Boko should be presidential candidate for UDC, an arrangement that ended at the time when the UDC lost the 2014 general elections.

“It was decided that Botswana National Front (BNF) should be given the presidency so that Advocate Boko could be our presidential candidate. The late Gomolemo Motswaledi of BMD was to be his running mate. We made this arrangement in preparation to taking over state power.

So, all that has passed, we contested and lost so it is all in the past,” said the BMD leader. He stated that constitutionally, the UDC has no president because the president has to be elected during the UDC elective congress. Advocate Pilane pointed out that UDC according to the Constitution should hold its congress every three (3) years.

He stated that even all the members of UDC National Executive Committee have to be elected at the congress and as it stands, “there is no president or Vice Presidents because they were not voted into those positions.”

Advocate Pilane said instead of building the UDC brand their colleagues at Botswana Congress Party (BCP) and Botswana National Front have resorted to petty issues. He told the media that the leadership of the two parties have taught their members to insult BMD leadership and its members on social media and any other forum.

He had no kind words for the BCP, calling the party a divisive party that thrives on insults and divisive tendencies. He said the BCP leadership had encouraged its foot soldiers to use social media to insult him and members of the BMD.

According to Advocate Pilane, these are some of the things that have made the two parties remain in opposition for far too long without even coming close to toppling the ruling party. He described them as dishonest people who will plunge the country into chaos and that is why Batswana do not want to give them power.

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VIDEO: A Gaborone hotel Prophet caught in the act

Yvonne Mooka

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In a matter that closely resembles that of a South African Cabinet Minister, Melusi Gigaba’s masturbating video clip, a visiting Zimbabwean Prophet, Ronald El Melchizedek of Altar of Grace this week denied that he has been sending nudes to church sisters and demanding same from them.

In fact, the ‘man of God’ has earned himself the name, ‘Botswana’s Omotoso’ by girls that allege he has sexually exploited them. Pastor Timothy Omotoso is a Nigerian clergyman accused of sexually exploiting over 30 young girls from his church in South Africa.

“He is an Omotoso and even though they hide it at his church, some of us have received messages from him asking for our nudes. Actually, he has asked for my nudes several times,” says one church sister.

The Midweek Sun has gotten hold of a 34 seconds video clip of the youthful prophet playing with his manhood. Looking like he is in a hotel room, the man stands fully naked in a muted video that, depicts him speaking and teasing the recipient. In a standing position, he starts off by caressing his manhood, giving it a close up and ends up lying on the bed, facing up.

At least three young women say they received the video from the prophet and that he usually asks for nudes from them. One of them actually says he has been pestering her, demanding to have sex with her. “He likes to send me messages of how horny he is for me. But again, he likes asking for nudes from women.

Even married women at his church have fallen victims of his sexual harassment. I left the church because he disgusted me by doing such things yet calling himself a man of God,” she says.

The woman however says that Melchizedek, a Zimbabwean who holds services at Gaborone Hotel when he is in the country, is a man of accurate prophecies. “He moves mightily in the prophetic but he likes harassing church sisters. It is known in his church. He is married but controlled by the spirit of lust,” she says.

The Prophet responds
Melchidezek told The Midweek Sun that he was aware of the video of him doing the rounds through WhatsApp, but was quick to label the whole thing a scam.“Yes we are aware. Those are scammers from Benin who hacked into my wife’s Facebook account and phone and stole our videos and pictures. So they wanted to blackmail us and we refused, that is why they are doing that.

It is just an effort to harm the work of God but God is in control,” he told The Midweek Sun. He would not be drawn into responding to, or even discussing the allegations levelled against him by church sisters, but instead gave this reporter a mobile number of a person he said was his wife.

The said woman confirmed that the video was posted by scammers. “That was done by scammers. We have reported them to Benin police,” she said. She however would not give the name of the police station nor go into further details.

This incident follows on last week’s revelations reported by this publication, where several girls spoke anonymously about pastors, prophets and ‘men of God’who were using them sexually in church. Many were uncomfortable to reveal their names, forcing this paper to also conceal the identies of the accused churches and pastors involved in the dirty acts in the name of God.

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