Poor Political Leadership Responsible for Threats on Journalists

If one considers the true state of the republic of Botswana, from unemployment to the general disillusionment about the lack of prosperity in an economy which tends to serve certain privileged enclaves at the expense of the majority, it goes without saying that our country is crying out for what Robert K. Greenleaf calls a “Servant Leadership”.
A servant leader “is sharply different from one who is a leader first …The difference manifests itself in the care taken by the servant leader- first to make sure that other people’s highest priority needs are being served. The best test, and difficult to administer is: Do those served grow as persons? Do they, while being served, become healthier, wiser, freer, more autonomous, more likely- themselves- to become servants? And, what is the effect on the least privileged in society? Will they benefit or at least not be further deprived?” Greenleaf writes in an essay he first published in 1970.
The role of journalists and critical members of the public is simple; to ensure that leaders in any sphere of society put the people ahead of themselves, and that they account to people first and not just themselves- and whether those who say they have solutions are genuine.
However, an atmosphere exists today that is a result of a combination of the arrogance of incumbency on the part of the BDP and a corrosive elite arrogance across the political divide. The BDP’s attitude towards the media is well documented and goes a long way back and the party’s statement distancing itself from Tiro Mekgwe can do very little to wipe out the party’s attitude towards journalists which goes as far back as the 1970s. President Seretse Khama, while he had a big heart, was particularly sensitive about media scrutiny- and an arrogance and refusal to account by government officials has its origins in his government and grew worse in  the 80s and 90s where government bullied journalists willy-nilly- including deportations of foreign scribes.
The formation of the main opposition block Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC), just from the run up to the 2014 election up to the BMD’s 2017 Bobonong congress has revealed a very dark side. That opposition political leaders are impetuous and are extremely sensitive to criticism- a tendency that has cascaded to some of their uncritical party members. So, Tiro Mekgwe is not an accident, he is a product of the political hypnosis by a political leadership which does not only portray itself as more important than the people but is doing everything to establish a culture of unaccountability by threatening the media and critical members of society who only point glaring weaknesses.
The media gets a lot of things wrong and not least about Politics which itself, without the media, thrives on conspiracies, plots and deception. However, in its pursuit of accountability- the media cannot and will not be paralyzed by the fear to be wrong as long as the motive is to increase accountability. The media is also aware of the extent of selfishness among leaders and will continue demanding that leaders are aware of their responsibility to serve first and without the arrogance that they are above reproach.