Khama Faces Possible Treason Charges

  • Court papers filed by DISS claim weapons held at Khama’s house are arms of war
  • If found guilty, Khama could face 25 years in prison
  • DISS claims Khama knows what he is running away from


Former president Ian Khama is facing possible criminal charges, including treason according to a filing notice submitted by the Directorate on Intelligence and Security Services (DISS) at court.

An affidavit deposed last week by Jet Steven Mafuta, the lead investigator in the Khama versus DISS case has revealed that the spy agency pursuing Khama on several charges that that potentially breach the National Security Act. His affidavit was in support of the DISS’s expedited appeal application against Justice Renier Busang’s recent judgement in which he denied the state a search and seizure warrant of Khama’s State House 4 in Ruretse. The DISS believes highly dangerous weapons of war are being kept at his residence.

“Applications for search and seizure warrants are done on ex-parte basis for the purpose of preventing suspects from interfering with evidence or destroying the evidence before investigators can lay their hands on the same,” states Mafuta, who has been seconded from the Botswana Police Services (BPS) in order to lead the case.

He notes that a delay in being granted the search and seizure warrant could provide Khama enough time to dispose of the suspected evidence.

“The matter is of great public importance in that it affects a former president who potentially faces a charge of, among others, treason and it is imperative that it should be brought to finality sooner than later. The net effect of the decision of the High Court is to basically ground the investigation to halt in that barring the respondent willingly allowing the investigators access to the premises, which is highly unlikely, the investigators have no way of accessing exhibits. This is particularly so given that the respondent has since left the country and there is no indication when he intends to return.”

In addition, Mafuta says Khama would not suffer any prejudice if the warrant was to be given. “…If there is incriminating evidence found in the premises or if he has got nothing to hide, he has nothing to fear. He also has the right to challenge the warrant any time following its issuance.”

The DIS appeal was submitted before the Court of Appeal (CoA) on November 24th 2021. DIS is represented by Sifilane Thapelo of Thapelo Attorneys.

Khama is expected to file his responding affidavit tomorrow (Wednesday) through his lawyers Ramalepa Attorneys.

Meanwhile, according to the Botswana Penal Code, an act of treason attracts a sentence of 15 to 25 years in jail.