Botswana president says corruption allegations ‘tainted’

Botswana’s President Mokgweetsi Masisi believes that a group of diplomats whom he confronted over alleged corruption had previously visited Europe.

The group of ambassadors, who have been implicated in a fraud case, had not explained what is the reason for their previous trips to Europe, Mr Masisi said.

The president’s comments come at a time when critics accuse him of not consulting parliament as much as he is supposed to about measures he is implementing to tackle corruption.

In September 2017, a court in Germany, handed a 21-year prison sentence to a former employee of the Ministry of International Affairs and Co-operation on corruption charges.

In his speech, Mr Masisi told the ambassadors “I will not hesitate to deal with any and all individuals implicated in corruption whether a serving or former ambassador in the country. Even as a current ambassador. Therefore, I want to let them know that we as the government are working on this matter and we will deal with any current or past ambassador in the country,” he said.

Mr Masisi recently appointed a special team to investigate cases of corruption cases, including the alleged fraud case.

“We will also not be taking business interests or ownership of entities which are subsidised to our ambassador to stand as priority for foreign affairs affairs,” he said.

The African Union is helping in monitoring the bribery trial which also involves a former chief of the Reserve Bank of Botswana.

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