New Twist in Alleged Suicide in Police Station Cell 

  • Family says deceased’s uncle who absolved the police of wrongdoing may be covering up for personal gain
  • Deceased’s mother engages Modimo and Associates to sue the police for her daughter’s death
  • Lawyer says the police lied that the pathologist worked at Nyangabgwe when he is in fact a police pathologist


The case in which an uncle of deceased Pedzani Keneilwe Mosala recently absolved Botswana Police Service (BPS) of blame in the death of his niece took a new twist when Uncle Baagi Dintwa was accused of spinning cover-up for either  personal gain or under duress.

Before then, Dintwa, had dismissed allegations that linked the police to the death of Mosala. The 22-years old allegedly committed suicide in a cell at Kutlwano Police Station in Francistown where she was detained in connection with common theft.

According to the police, the deceased used her jacket tied to an overhead shower pipe to commit suicide.

Initially skeptical

Dintwa cleared the police of any wrongdoing last week, saying although he was initially skeptical about Mosala’s alleged suicide, he was convinced beyond all doubt after being shown the scene and the corpse that it was indeed a suicide.

However, the mother of the deceased, Sapelo Mosala, holds differently and has instructed lawyers at Modimo and Associates to pursue the matter. She says she refused to sign papers that she accepted her daughter’s death as a suicide and accuses Dintwa of covering up either for personal gain or due to coercion.

“Any claim that the police have been cleared of any wrongdoing is a simplistic and callous fabrication of an irresponsible police service that is covering up,” said a lawyer at the firm.

Personal capacity  

“If Dintwa has made statements absolving the police, he made them in his personal capacity and for reasons best known to himself. It is only our client or a person mandated by our client who can competently make statements regarding this matter.”

According to the lawyer, no sensible answers have come from the police and that it is their client’s reasonable view that the police have been on a vicious propaganda spree in an attempt to evade liability by blaming the victim.

“In the aftermath of the deceased’s death, the police rendered an explanation that drastically fails to make sense even to a person of average cognitive ability, which is that the deceased hanged herself using a jacket in a cell that she shared with an unknown Zimbabwean detainee,” said the lawyer.

Tortured or assaulted

“However, various witnesses testify seeing the deceased prior to her death in a very bad condition that was consistent with someone having been severely tortured or assaulted.

“After the death of the deceased, the police proceeded to acquire the services of their own pathologist and lied to our client that the pathologist was based at Nyangabgwe Referral Hospital when the truth is that the pathologist works for the police and is therefore in all probability inclined to give the police an outcome favourable to them because he is on their payroll.”