Politicians meddle in bogosi for limelight – Dikgosi
- Kgosi Mosielele of BaHurutshe wants politicians banned from intermeddling in bogosi and vice versa
- President Masisi raised the issue in his SONA last week
FRANCISTOWN: Kgosi Kebinatshwene Mosielele of Manyana has attributed increasing involvement of politicians in bogosi (chieftainship/issues) to seeking limelight and wants the Constitution of Botswana to put a stop to the inter meddling.
In an interview with The Botswana Gazette after President Mokgweetsi Masisi raised concern over involvement of politicians in bogosi in his State of the Nation Address (SONA) recently, Kgosi Mosielele said politicians envy magosi (traditional chiefs) for their role as advocates of their people’s welfare.
The outspoken leader of BaHurutshe said Dikgosi detest this inter meddling. “As Dikgosi, the role we play has nothing to do with gaining any limelight,” he added. “We do what we do to help the people we lead. To curb this involvement of politicians in bogosi, there is need for a constitutional review. The constitution should bar involvement of politicians in bogosi and magosi in politics.”
Mosielele’s major concern is that inequality of tribes is a hindrance to the work of Dikgosi because some of them are not members of Ntlo Ya Dikgosi. “I have called for cessation of involvement of magosi in politics and of politicians in bogosi by means of a constitutional review or by legislation for a long time,” he asserted.
“However, I am disadvantaged because I cannot raise this important issue on an august platform like Ntlo ya Dikgosi and it has all gone unheeded. This is why I believe that there is a need for a constitutional review to abolish some of these inequalities.”
Kgosi Simon Nkgageng of Tati-Siding echoed Kgosi Mosiselele’s sentiments, saying politicians invade the territory of Digosi without any respect. “I have been subjected to a lot of disrespect from some politicians because they felt I was intruding in their territory,” Kgosi Nkgageng said. “Because we work with different village committees, politicians feel we rob them of their limelight.”
Delivering this year’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday last week, President Masisi criticiZed involvement of politicians in bogosi. “I therefore urge our traditional leadership and Batswana alike to jealously guard this important institution which has served us well over the years,” Masisi said.
Former president Ian Khama, who is the paramount chief of BaNgwato and patron of the opposition Botswana Patriotic Front, has been criticized for using bogosi for political ends.