Botswana has stepped up efforts to address potential civil aviation terrorist threats

Director general for Counter Terrorism Analysis and Fusion Division, Advocate Ernest Mosate said this at the inauguration of Botswana Passenger Information Unit recently.

He said the development enabled collection, analysis, transmition, usage, retention and sharing of data to identify known and suspected security threats in advance.

β€œThis will enhance our national, regional and international security,” Advocate Mosate said.

He said by setting up the unit, Botswana was meaningfully contributing to national, regional and international coordination and cooperation mechanisms against international terrorism.

Advocate Mosate said work on the programme started in 2019 when the country approached the United Nations Office of Counter Terrorism (UNOCT) for assistance with countering terrorist travel.

UNOCT’s Ms Christine Bradley explained that countering terrorist travel was a flagship capacity-building initiative led by her organisation.

β€œBotswana is the first country in Africa to establish and inaugurate their passenger information unit with the assistance of the counter terrorist travel programme,” she said and expressed the hope that it was the first of many across Africa.

The European Union’s Mr Pablo Valenzuela said the setting up of the unit demostrated Botswana’s commitment and dedication to the fight against terrorism.

He said the country’s passenger information unit model followed a multi-agency approach which ensured that all actors from law enforcement agencies working on countering terrorism and organised crime were connected.

Meanwhile Civil Aviation Authority of Botswana chief executive officer, Dr Bao Mosinyi has said reaping the unit’s benefits was dependent on the team deployed for its use.

He encouraged the unit staff to do their best and strive for continuous improvement.

Dr Mosinyi also stressed the need for Botswana to collaborate with its neighbours saying no country should be left behind when it came to security and safety.

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