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Khama, Masisi war now becoming ugly

Publishing Date : 07 August, 2018

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The fallout involving President Mokgweetsi Masisi and former President Lt General Ian Khama has proved to be taking a bitter twist and may turnout ugly if the duo is not reconciled.


This week former President Khama came out enraged by Office of the President (OP)’s refusal to accede to his proposal to appoint his longtime ally and former Directorate of Intelligence Services (DISS) as his Senior Private Secretary following the departure of Brigadier Tlhalerwa a few weeks ago.


The agitated Khama also revealed that he is taking the Masisi administration to court if they continue to block his move to appoint Kgosi. He has already served them with a letter of demand, a move signaling his intention to take President Masisi head on. It seems the duo has had a fallout after Masisi ascended to the Presidency. A few weeks after he took office Masisi has odered that Khama be denied the privilege of flying the military aircrafts, a sovereignty that he endured the entire period of his presidency.


Last week OP through the Permanent Secretary to the President Carter Morupisi made a shocking revelation when they confirmed that they do not know of Khama’s whereabouts. Ian Khama was at the time in the United States attending the Conservation International (CI) meeting. Morupisi said Khama did not inform OP of his international trip. Later this week it was reported again that Masisi refused Khama to ride on the Debswana aircraft to Orapa where he was scheduled to attend an event in the area. Morupisi again accused Khama of undermining protocol.


There is a perception that that Masisi is publicly humiliating his former boss while some believe Khama is uderming Masisi by seeking to continue to influence his decisions. As former party chairman, Khama is still a worshiped man in the party circles and his loyalists currently feel Masisi is hard on his former boss. A resolution or an act of appeasement between the two should be eminent before things become ugly.


The two leaders should find a way to reconcile before it is too late. Their infighting threatens not only the stability of their party but the country as well. When he took office on the 1st April, Masisi vowed that his administration will bank on consultation as a driving tool as compared to his predecessor who is believed to have taken a military approach of commanding and making sure his subordinates takes instructions.


Khama has announced that he will be engaging Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) leader Advocate Duma Boko as his attorney to take Kgosi’s matter forward. Col Isaac Seabelo Kgosi, a close friend of Khama has worked as Khama’s Private Secretary before when the latter served as Vice President to Festus Mogae. Kgosi would later leave when Khama took over as President to establish the DIS until he was fired this year by Masisi amid Corruption allegations.


Khama’s argument is that like every former President, he is entitled to a Private Secretary of his choice and this should be someone he has worked with before and someone who understand him better. This has been the standard practice and Khama submit that the same treatment be accorded to him. To show he is indeed in a brawl, Masisi forcefully removed Isaac Kgosi from his post as spy chief and replaced him with his longtime rival Peter Magosi. This is a man who was unceremoniously relieved off his duties by President Khama.


In yet another shocking revelation, former President Khama also pointed a concern that he fears BDP could lose 2019 general elections. This statement is bold and loaded. To a certain extent this means Khama no longer has confidence in the man he gave the button. He says the BDP is not in the good position right now and said his support will be ‘affected’ if they introduce policies he does not believe in. What are we missing here?

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