Mathambo rejects state’s out of court settlement

  • Says what was off ered is an “insult”
  • Case returns to court for status hearing
  • Mathambo is demanding millions for unfair dismissal


Former head of the Directorate on Corruption and Econwomic Crimes (DCEC), Brigadier Joseph Mathambo, has rejected a proposal by the state to settle his unfair dismissal suit out of court, The Botswana Gazette has established.
Late last year, the two parties asked the High Court for permission to discuss a proposal to resolve the matter out of court. This publication has since learned that the settlement talks have collapsed.
Mathambo’s lawyer Dick Bayford informed the court last month that they wish to proceed with the case, which is now due for a status hearing before it is committed for trial.
Sources say the state offered Mathambo termination benefits far less than what he had projected. In fact, it is said Mathambo and his team who deemed the fees proposed by the state as an “insult”.
“The issue is back in court. We could not agree with what they proposed,” Mathambo confirmed briefly and advised this publication to contact his legal team.
Mathambo is suing President Mokgweetsi Masisi for unfairly terminating his contract following his secondment from the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) in April 2019. He says the President terminated his contract unlawfully and without notice.
He is demanding to be paid the difference between the salary and benefits he currently draws as Brigadier in the Botswana Defence Force and what he could have continued to earn had he continued in his position as head of the DCEC for five years effective 2nd April 2019.
He is also seeking enjoyment of all allowances and benefits that he would have had in the same course of time. Immediately after his contract was terminated, his salary was cut and he was stripped of most of his benefits.
Records show that Mathambo was on salary scale of F0, which comes to P655,656 per annum. Other benefits that he enjoyed included provision of a government vehicle to drop and collect him between his residence and office, free government housing or a housing allowance at 15 percent of his basic salary, commuted overtime allowance at 15 percent of his basic salary, special duty allowance at 15 percent of basic salary, 24-hour security guard services at his home, a security alarm system at home, a cell phone and fixed telephone line subsidy at 90 percent of the bill paid by the government, as well as a 90 percent subsidy on bills of the Internet at his place of residence.
Mathambo’s contract also stated that he would continue to receive full benefits from the BDF during the term of his secondment to DCEC.
His contract further stipulated that the government would give him a three-month long notice prior to terminating his secondment, which was not the case. He pointed out that as it is practice in government that when an officer is transferred from one office to another, their emoluments (wages) the officer retains the higher emoluments despite assumption of the latter office. He made note of previous DCEC director generals who benefited from the same practice.
“In this application, I do not seek to impugn the President’s power to remove me from the office of Director General of DCEC and I aver that the President had the requisite power to make the decision to remove me from the said position,” Mathambo deposed.
“My bone of contention is that the residual terms and conditions of the underlying contract of employment which I entered into with the government remain of full force and effect and ought to be honoured.”