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Home » Columns » DIS inside newsrooms stinks

DIS inside newsrooms stinks

Publishing Date : 01 August, 2017

Kesitegile Gobotswang (PhD)
BCP Deputy Leader


Reports that Sunday Standard is in procession of a tape-cum intelligence document containing a private conversation between Kentse Rammidi the Secretary General of the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) and Tumiso Rakgare former BCP Youth League President is shocking to say the least. The fact that the tape was leaked by the Directorate Intelligence Security Service (DISS) to the Sunday Standard says a lot about the relationship that exists between some Newspaper Editors and the DISS. Apparently they share vital intelligence to fight political battles.


It is a well-known fact that DIS has splashed cash that is never accounted for in purchasing the latest technologies to listen to private conversations between innocent citizens.  Pius Mokgware the former Botswana Defence Force (BDF) Commander of the Ground Forces and Member of Parliament for Gabane-Mmankgodi is one of the many victims of the DIS spying on innocent citizens. The case between the General and DISS was finally settled out of court as it would have exposed the illegal operations of DISS.


On the private conversation between Rammidi and Rakgare the Sunday Standard deliberately misdirected itself into celebrating the DIS leak based on an illegal act of invading privacy of innocent citizens to serve their wicket intentions. By publishing a private conversation not related to criminal activity would render Sunday Standard an accomplice in undermining the fundamental rights of citizens to privacy.


The case of Rammidi and Rakgare reminds one of the biblical story captured in John, Chapter 8, Verse 1-12. In this incident a whole community had turned against an adulterous woman calling for her to be stoned to death where upon Jesus said “He who is without sin among you, let him stone at her first.” It is said that they went away one by one until Jesus was the only one remaining together with the accused woman. Today we say to those who are accusing Rammidi and Rakgare, he who never held compromising private  conversations must raise their hands up and be counted as a rare breed, the editors of Sunday Standard included.


We can state for a fact that DIS under Isaac Kgosi who is its Director General is a menace to our political order. In the current scenario the ultimate target is clearly the destruction of Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) and BCP in particular. Destroying a political formation that is set to liberate Batswana from excessive looting of state assets and official corruption is seditious. DIS think it is okay to break the law to keep the BDP safe. Their strategy is to destabilize the opposition party project that is the only hope for Batswana.  There is no evidence of collusion between BCP and DIS. In fact the screaming headline and content are at variance.


In the recent past DIS has not hesitated to intervene in the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) internal wars. Recently there were reports about their active involved in BDP internal elections in support of the Vice President Mokgweetsi Masisi’s faction. It would appear that DIS has found in some newsrooms editors who are willing to play ball to safeguard their business interests. Recently Sunday Standard reported that there were “Newsrooms crawling with DIS moles masquerading as editors;” literally sending everyone on a wild goose chase.

According to the Botswana Gazette (Wednesday 26 July-01 August 01 2017) DIS Chief confirmed that the spy agency has informers in the media industry. He revealed that the reason why some of the journalists were peddling propaganda against DIS was because they have terminated their service. Apparently there are some in the newsrooms who are rented reporters tasked with publishing fake news to discredit opponents of their handlers. To suggest that a private conversation between two individual members of the National Executive Committee (NEC) translates into a BCP official position is superfluous to say the least. As if this was not enough the Sunday Standard report stretches the conversation to be a conspiracy between DIS and BCP to destroy Ndaba Gaolathe. Spinning best describes the way they used the material obtained through their DIS connections.


As BCP we remain focused on holding the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) accountable. We are working tirelessly to frustrate BDP tactics aimed at stealing the 2019 elections using EVMs. The party is also pursuing government against broad day light stealing of state assets such as Air Botswana, power stations, and Botswana Meat Commission. The BCP will not rest until Mosu scandal is fully accounted for.  More importantly we demand that money ear-marked for purchasing Gripen fighter jets should be used to re-open BCL mines to save thousands jobs and the economy of SPEDU region. Make no mistake, if there is any scalp we are aiming at it is the BDP’s.


It will be amiss of us if we failed to examine the relationship between Sunday Standard and notorious foreign intelligence outfits such as the American Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). The two are long time partners who undertake joint projects. The most significant was the botched second-hand Printing Plant currently in Pilane.  Sunday Standard benefited from dirty money channelled through the New York-based Media Development Investment Fund (MDIF) linked to George Soros. Sunday Standard is yet to refute charges that they own P500 000 to the late Louis Nchindo, the former Managing Director of Debswana. Debswana is a joint diamond mining company between the Botswana government and De Beers.


Given Sunday Standard background of benefiting from intelligence money it is possible that they might be linked to DIS or some elements within the organization. They come across as a proxy member of the Intelligence Community. A close analysis of their news coverage shows that 80 per cent of their front page stories are sourced either through their DIS or Directorate of Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) connections, most of which are recycled material.


In 2014 Botswana Congress Party (BCP) became a victim of devilish collusion between DIS agents masquerading as editors. They successfully cooked a dossier meant to discredit the BCP Leader linking him to imagined businesses associated with the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) heavy weights. So well designed was the fake story that even some academics believed it.

As Hon Dithapelo Keorapetse concisely put it, up to today they have dismally failed to provide “names of companies, directorships, addresses and what these companies trade with”. The issue of possible existence of a third force in Botswana politics may be true after all. The entry point appears to be some local media houses that are serving imperialist interests. The real thugs will soon be exposed. Sunday Standard-CIA link stinks to high heaven and UDC is the ultimate target.

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