BDP’s Polson Majaga in child marriage suspicion?
- Family confirms Majaga in customary marriage with a 24 year old
- Family denies arranging marrying off girl as a minor
FRANCISTOWN: The family of a 24 year old Dukwi young woman customarily married to Nata/Gweta Member of Parliament Polson Majaga has denied that she was married off to him after he allegedly impregnated her as a minor.
The Botswana Gazette spoke to the family following a tip off by a source who claimed that the young woman was married off to Majaga in a customary arrangement in a conspiracy to conceal the fact that he may have defiled her as a minor, and for the materialistic benefit of the family.
“Our daughter was approached lawfully; she wanted to start a family of her own and was married after having her first child. We didn’t find anything wrong with it because she had become of age,” said a Mrs. Gabalebatse the granmother of the woman at the centre of the controversy.
While she said that Dukwi Kgosi Oletsositse Mosweu presided over her granddaughter’s wedding, Kgosi Mosweu in an earlier conversation with The Botswana Gazette said he was “not part of the wedding”: “I know that the MP is married because I was shown the woman said to be his wife from a distance. I assume she was a woman because she was said to be one, and I was told she is his wife and understood they were married, but I did not get into the nitty-gritties.”
When it was pointed out to Gabalebatse that Kgosi Mosweu said he did not attend the wedding, she said “That man is my brother, he was there during my grand daughter’s wedding; the child was married at the right age,” she said. Dikgosi are usually expected, during the solemnization of customary marriages, to receive a letter from the groom/suitor justifying that he is truly not married; as well as receiving the couple during solemnizing with both of them presenting their full particulars, including valid national identity cards (Omang).
DID MAJAGA MARRY YOUNG GIRL TO COVER DEFILEMENT?
When The Botswana Gazette tried to get proof of the woman’s age in a bid to ascertain how old she was when she had her now 6 year old first child, Gabalebatse said she could not recall because she is an old woman who old age had taken a toll on, “I am very old, I can’t recall her correct age when she first got pregnant. Her 22 year old younger sister is the one who can recall these things or alternatively I can look for her birth certificates, but they are stored far away (sic) and can’t get them for you now,” she said. Speaking to this publication on the side, the woman’s younger sister revealed that she (older sister) was born in 1992 and that she was recently brought back home by Majaga for reasons she could not disclose.
Attempts to contact and get comments from the woman in question were unsuccessful as her phone was off and unreachable. Her young sister however revealed that she had gone to Francistown.
DO THE NUMBERS ADD UP?
Other than the fact that the family disclosed the young woman’s age (24), this publication could not establish her day and month of birth after the family failed to provide documents; however, given that her eldest child is 6 years old, it was established that the mother was likely to have been 18 when it was born; meaning that she may have fallen pregnant at 17 years. There however was no definitive evidence to suggest that she was defiled.
“THE MEDIA IS TRYING TO WRECK MY MARRIAGE” MAJAGA
When The Botswana Gazette tried to corroborate the story and establish whether he was aware of claims that he had married her now 24 year old wife as a minor in an attempt to cover up an alleged defilement, Majaga said “There is nothing I can discuss with you, we already have a matter here concerning journalists who are destroying my marriage, who went to the police, to Chiefs, who went to my grandmother- the mother of my mother- in the company of my wife defaming me. These are issues we have already taken to CID. That is all I can say, thank you.”
Majaga came under public scrutiny recently following a story carried by The Voice in which another 17 year old young woman claimed to be pregnant by him and that they started dating when she was a student. Majaga however vehemently denied the allegations.