BPS fines Lelatisitswe family for unlawful gathering

  • MP Lelatisitswe apologises to President and nation
  • Man believed to be MP’s brother pays P5K fine


Botswana Police Service (BPS) has charged the family of the MP for Boteti East, Sethomo Lelatisitswe, with unlawful gathering, ending speculation about whether State of Emergency (SoE) rules and regulations are applied selectively.

Although BPS spokesman Dipheko Motube said he was not in a position to reveal the identity of the person who paid the P5 000 fine, he said it was a 55-year old man believed to be the MP’s elder brother. “I can confirm that we have charged a 55-year old man of Letlhakane Village for unlawful gathering,” Motube said. The man was fined P5 000 and paid immediately. I am not sure how he is related to the MP but I think he is his older brother.”

The charge and fine followed public outrage over the MP’s Facebook posts of people gathered for a tombstone unveiling at Lelatisitswe’s father’s gravesite in Letlhakane, which was in contravention of SoE rules and regulations.

In the face of the public outrage that ensued, the MP for Boteti East soon deleted the posts, distanced himself from them and apologised to President Mokgweesti Masisi and the nation. “I wish to posit that I personally did not share anything or even respond to any comments,” he stated in his apology. “My Facebook official administrator did without prior consultation as it is the norm. Immediately I learned about the post and comments, I instructed for the post to be removed from my official page.”

“For those who know my family, we are a law abiding citizens. We will never at any point defy or undermine the President’s efforts or those of the COVID-19 situation so that Batswana could go back to their normal life.”

Since last year, BPS has come under the spotlight after it failed to charge certain prominent people for holding events that contravened SoE rules and regulations.

These include a meeting of the central committee of the Botswana Democratic Party that took place during a lockdown last year.

Another case involved a service in memory of a BDP member in Francistown that was led by the Secretary General of the party, Mpho Balopi. The BDP eventually apologised to the nation for violating SoE regulations.