Previously, we made a submission to the Constitutional Review Commission that poor men should be discouraged from advocating for polygamy. That big-money issue doesn’t concern them. We would like to make another submission, this one on the holding of general elections. For economic reasons, these elections are unnecessary and should be abolished once and for all. Apparently executive political power makes people business (and artistic) geniuses. People who never had business acumen, alongside family members, become super-rich once they are in power. The best example to quote in the SADC region is that of Eduardo dos Santos, whose daughter became one of the wealthiest black women in the world. Jacob Zuma’s Dubai-based son, Duduzane, is now reportedly worth R249 million. Joe Biden’s son now sells high-prized paintings and has become a multi-millionaire overnight. Here at home, President Mokgweetsi Masisi is said to have become filthy rich after he assumed power. Make no mistake, whichever opposition leader becomes Botswana’s president will also become super-rich overnight. The story we hear is that these people got rich off brilliant business ideas. Many more people have such ideas but it seems that such ideas necessarily need to be paired with political power to bear fruit. To that end, we propose to the Commission that elections should be scrapped and that citizens from different regions and tribes be equitably rotated in and out of elected office at national level. Executive office (presidency and cabinet positions) should last a year in order to unlock business acumen from more people – and their family members. More citizens across regional and tribal spectrum will be empowered and Botswana will become an economic powerhouse.

Police should investigate animal auction sales

You hardly ever hear stories about so-and-so being a diamond thief nowadays but animal auction sales strongly suggest that diamond theft is still rampant. We don’t exactly have evidence but when you hear that a bull was sold for P700 000 or that a ram was sold for P60 000 at auction, something is certainly amiss. Supposing it hasn’t been disbanded, the Diamond and Narcotics Squad should start attending these auction sales - and confiscate each and every animal sold for more than the amount that the Botswana Meat Commission or local butchery would pay. Thereafter, such animals should be x-rayed: if a bull is sold for P700 000, it has to have swallowed a gem diamond. Therefore, what is being sold is a diamond. The cow is merely a container no different from a piece of cloth in which diamonds would be wrapped. The diamond industry itself can be useful: if there is need to spy on the sellers, Debswana Diamond Company would be more than equal to the task.

Planning to visit Hon. Mmusi? Don’t!

You may have made plans to meet the Minister of Justice, Defence and Security, Kagiso Mmusi, in his office. If you do, you may want to rethink that because it is not such a good idea - you may end up at a Directorate of Intelligence Services and Security facility in Sebele. You will certainly end up there if the minister reaches for his phone and appears to be typing a short text message (possibly “he’s here”) on his iPhone. Why would we say that? Well, whom was the Commissioner of Police, Keabetswe Makgophe, in a meeting with when DISS operatives pounced on him?

Morena boloka sechaba sa etsho

A now viral video shows an interesting start to a consultative meeting by the Constitutional Review Commission in Pandamatenga. Kgosi Rebecca Banika is at the podium and asks the audience to sing the national anthem, whereupon a female voice leads into the first two words of Morena Boloka Sechaba sa Etsho. The latter is the Pan-Africanist anthem which began its life in 1897 as a Xhosa hymn, Nkosi Sikelel iAfrika, and was adopted as part of South Africa’s national anthem in 1994. The title translates as “God save our nation.” Banika swiftly shut down the lead singer with “No, not that one” – and she was wrong for it. At a time that a former president who allegedly and personally acquired weapons of war and ammunition in the final days of his administration has fled into a neighbouring state, when the vehicle of a minister’s wife was burnt by what some say were hired arsonists, when a former DISS chief has threatened to “topple this government” and when an armed robbery occurs every two days, should landless people be claiming to own land or beseeching God for mercy?

Working around the clock

Speaking of anthems, there is one that is sung around the Government Enclave, an all-year- round holiday camp in the centre of Gaborone: “I am working around the clock.” In London, New York, Sydney, Harare, Lusaka and other English-speaking capitals, that saying means that one is working from 8 a.m. to 8 a.m. the next day. At the Government Enclave where so little gets done, that would mean visiting places around the National Assembly where there is a striking clock housed in a tower. So, yes, if you spend what is supposed to be your workday visiting friends at the Office of the President, National Archives, Parliament Annexe, Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism, Police Headquarters and Ministry of International Affairs and Cooperation, you are indeed working around the (National Assembly’s striking) clock.