- Worried that his DISS security detail is his biggest security threat
- DISS is currently pursuing Khama’s CCTV camera for suspected arms smugglers
- Khamas private security would replace DISS
Controversial former president Ian Khama is seriously considering severing ties with his official security detail that is provided by the government and manned by the Directorate of Intelligence and Security Service (DISS) because he considers it his biggest security threat, reliable sources have told The Botswana Gazette.
In fact, Khama is so convinced of this that he has reportedly told some of his confidantes that the secret service is now using the security detail attached to him to spy on his private life.
DISS recently applied to the courts for permission to search Khama’s premises and seize any items they deemed useful to their cause. In court papers, DISS stated that there is a need for a thorough search of Khama’s property for the security of the country.
The secret service zeroed in on an “important” hard-drive containing CCTV camera footage that it wanted to seize because it could help DISS identify people allegedly responsible for smuggling firearms into the property.
A source close to Khama has told this publication that the former president is seriously considering letting go of the DISS security detail that he would replace with his private security which has been operating on an adhoc basis.
“He is now of the view that perhaps the time has come to let them go but is still engaging his legal experts for advice,” the source said. “We do not know if the government or DISS will agree to vacate the premises. So it’s a case of individual rights versus established law. But he believes he has ample evidence to prove his fears or paranoia. Termination of the relationship will also free the poor officers from their daily ordeal of being subjected to the master’s wild agenda.”
Khama has on several occasions travelled without his official security detail, including his most recent controversial trip that the government says it knows nothing about. Responding to this publication’s questions recently, DISS blamed Khama for making things difficult. “Former presidents fall under the category of VIPs whose personal safety is a direct responsibility of the Directorate of Intelligence and Security,” said the official spokesman of the secret service, Edward Robert.
“Others are the former presidents’ immediate family members. Also in this category is the head of state, their immediate family members and the vice president. This is a service the Directorate has continually offered to all identified beneficiaries without failure or incident. Of course, in offering this service, the Directorate is, for efficiency and effectiveness, relying on the cooperation of the service recipients. This is something both parties are fully aware of.”