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“This country belongs to us, not funders” – Ngakaagae

It looks like the issue of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) treasurer’s house being used as vaccination center is far from over.

Just when the complaints were subsiding, the Assistant Minister of Health and Wellness- Honourable Sethomo Lelatisitswe made another comments that reignited the hullabaloo. Yesterday, the Ministry of Health and Wellness issued a communication asking for those who have houses that can be used as vaccination centers to come forward and help the Ministry to decongest the clinics. The statement was issued after the uproar about the usage of Dada’s house as a vaccination center.

“We arranged a separate vaccination center for VIPs as a form of respect to our elders (senior citizens), it is our culture as Batswana, even at weddings elders eat first, at a specific place, they do not mix-up with children” Lelatisitswe proclaimed.

However, according to Kgosietsile Ngakaagae, a prominent local celebrity lawyer, the statement is disrespectful.

“The statement by the Hon Ass Minister of Health, that the facility was for bagolo (elders) is utter rubbish. It is bringing back the bygones. To begin with, the fact that the bookings were made through Mr. Dada meant that he could include, at his leisure, all his kith and kin, to be saved from COVID19 death by using the meagre doses we have. That gave him the advantage of being the first shareholder, on a government asset; rare one for that matter. As it is, many Indians got first preference mo mekentong ya rona [on our vaccines] whilst our black parents were dying our there in villages. You should be ashamed.” Ngakaagae charged.

The Former President, His Excellency Dr. Festus Mogae, and former cabinet member Daniel Kwelagobe are some of the elders (dignitaries) who received their jabs at a public clinic. Meanwhile, Sunday Standard Newspaper reported that ninety-seven percent (97%) of those vaccinated at Dada’s house are of Indian origin. That is the revelation that sparked the turmoil among most citizens.

“If you keep pushing it, we shall demand the names of all vaccinated there, so we ascertain their relationships with the house owner. We shall demand their names so we ascertain if indeed e ne e le bagolo [it were elders], by any definition of the word. We shall demand to know the ratio on race. We shall shout corruption, and demand a prosecution.Please respect us as Batswana. This country belongs to us, not your funders. If you have nothing good to say, just shut up.” Ngakaagae backlashed.

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