Botswana journos ‘detained, threatened’ for probe into Khama’s holiday home

Ian Khama

Ian Khama

Gaborone — Three journalists who tried to get a closer look at Botswana President Ian Khama’s holiday home last week were allegedly detained and threatened by plain clothes security agents, according to a local NGO.

The Ink Centre for Investigative Journalism, which is based in Gaborone, says the three were briefly held on Wednesday after they travelled to investigate “unexplained developments at President Ian Khama’s holiday home near Mosu village”, around 600km northeast of the capital.

“Seven armed plain clothes security agents on quad bikes and SUVs, barred the journalists near Mosu village . . . and warned them never to ‘set foot’ near President Ian Khama’s private compound or risk death,” said the centre in a statement on Friday.

Private radio station GabzFM claimed the journalists’ had been following up on reports “suggesting that the military and other government agencies are alleged to be constructing a multi-million pula compound for Khama using tax payers money”.

Khama’s closely-guarded compound at Mosu appears to be a sensitive subject in Botswana.

The Botswana Guardian reported in 2013 that Khama “settled” in Mosu in late 2000, using a luxurious caravan as temporary accommodation before being allocated land to construct a lodge and an airstrip.

The Ink Centre for Investigative Journalism claimed that Wednesday’s incident “was part of a growing pattern of official harassment of the private media in Botswana”. The centre’s co-founder Joel Konopo was one of the three reporters who say they were detained. He told the US-based Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project that the reporters had been able to call a lawyer and identify the men as intelligence agents using the number-plates of the vehicles they were driving. — AFP

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  • Ugodlwayo Fulela

    culd u pliz allow this goffl oun to build his nkandla in peace kanti lithi ahlale ngaphi ! u crap journalists with hidden agendas make me sic

    • Mr Arcadia

      You’re right; these bloody cheeky journos should leave this lekker goffl oun alone!!

      • Jared

        U right Jimmy! The Ouns need to be rushed exce! Ouns must know thats Goffels can also rule exce!

  • Rtd general

    Yoooo these journos who lacks respect.the Goffi oun was living in a caravan waiting to be allocated land,now he was allocated and building then there is a problem. The Goffi oun is a president and earning a salary,so where is this accusation of tax payers money coming from.please for their own good’s sake lock them up just for 3 days so they learn how,where and when to poke their noses

  • LL

    The media as a whole on the continent find themselves in difficulty when trying to investigate something which the law is not happy with

  • Lux

    Lol! Goffl ouns rule exce’!!

    • Jared

      Wad you tuning braa?!!?

  • e9023

    One must look at the bigger picture -transparency – if there is nothing to hide let the journa find out for themselves if it is true of just malicious gossip there could be somone trying to mess the Goffle oun

  • Zebra

    More Goffles should rule exce!