The Director of Traffic, Senior Assistant Commissioner Katlholo Mosimanegape has thanked stakeholders for their role in ensuring road safety during the recent festive holidays.
Speaking at a road safety stakeholder’s breakfast meeting in Gaborone recently, Mr Mosimanegape said that their efforts had paid off as preliminary statistics indicate that there was a reduction in the number of road accidents and fatalities recorded during the ended festive season compared to 2011/2012 festive holidays.He said that this success was a result of the stakeholders’ campaigns which were done in partnership with the police.
The Director of Traffic however said that although the police and their efforts are commendable, this should not be a cause for celebration as there were lives that were lost. He urged them to continue to work hard in unity to ensure that lives are not lost on the roads.
Mr Mosimanegape further expressed concern at motorists who continue to over speed, drive whilst drunk and generally violate traffic laws.
For his part, the Director of the Department of Road Transport and Safety, Mr Orapeleng Mosigi revealed that they are in the process of drafting regulations for driving schools and instructors. Mr Mosigi said that through the regulations learners would be taught safer and defensive driving methods so that they do not become hazards on the roads. He encouraged the stakeholders in the road safety drive to work in unity as their shared goal is to have safer roads.
The meeting was attended by representatives from among others Motor Vehicle Accident Fund, Ministry of Health, World Health Organization and the Botswana Alcohol Industry Association.
At least 30 people died in separate road accidents during the festive season effective from 17 December 2012 to 1st January 2013.
In one of the accidents a 21 year old man of Sebina died after losing control of the motor vehicle he was driving, hit the railway line at Palapye and the vehicle overturned.
During the same period, the police recorded 18 murder cases, 18 suicides, 114 rape cases, 46 cases of armed robbery, 90 cases of house breaking and theft, 85 cases of burglary and theft.
In one of the murder cases on the 31st December 2012, a 25 year old woman of Leretweng ward, Mahalapye died after she was stabbed several times by her boyfriend following a misunderstanding. The deceased was rushed to Mahalapye hospital where she was certified dead. The suspect was later arrested and he is in police custody.
Meanwhile, the police are investigating a murder case in which a 25 year old woman of Boikago ward, Palapye was murdered on the 1st January 2013 by her boyfriend after they had a quarrel over money.
At the Mascom booster bash held at the Waterfront in Gaborone few crime incidents wererecorded. In one case of rape, a 29 year old woman of Tshweneng, Gaborone was raped by two unknown men and robbed of her Nokia cellphone and money amounting to P900. The suspects are still at large.
The Botswana Police Service is concerned about false stories alleging a spate of rape and robberies at local shopping malls in Gaborone. These allegations are circulated through social networks or e-mail under the guise of a warning to the women folk about rape and robbery that are taking place in public toilets at shopping centres.
The allegations are far from the truth as we the police have never registered any cases of such nature in Gaborone or anywhere in this Republic. In addition this warning is alleged to be originating from a certain “Inspector King Tshebo of Airport Police”. The truth of the matter is that we don’t have any police inspector by the names of King Tshebo. The only officer who is a member of the Botswana Police Service and has similar names to this one is a Superintendent and is based in Naledi Police Station as a Station Commander. As a matter of fact, Superintendent Tshebo has never authored this mail.
Therefore, the Botswana Police Service would like to advise members of the public to ignore these baseless allegations which cause unnecessary anxiety on the public, especially women and treat the e-mail as a hoax. However, we would like to confirm that rape is a serious problem in our country and people should do everything in their power to avoid becoming victims of such heinous crimes.
We would like to assure members of the public that the Police Service will duly inform the public about any emerging crime trends.
Mochudi Police have arrested one suspect following a series of incidents in which a number of Government departments and Parastatal organizations in the Kgatleng District lost huge sums of money to criminals who steal cheques in offices and use fraudulent Omang numbers to defraud banks and shops.
The police still appeal to members of the public for information that can lead to the arrest of the remaining suspects. Criminals target strong rooms where cheques are kept and get away with piles of cheques that they later exchange to unsuspecting service providers.
Financial institutions and shops are advised to be always on the lookout for suspicious people changing cheques over the counter.
The Botswana Police Public Relations Officer (PRO) Assistant Commissioner Mr Christopher Mbulawa has called upon men to reassume their positions as heads of families and communities leaders.
Assistant Commissioner Mbulawa made the call when addressing the staff the Botswana Public Service College today (14/11/2012) during their prayer meeting held at the College in Gaborone. Mr Mbulawa said Men Sector is going around the country targeting men at their work places, explaining that this platform awards men opportunity to meet and talk about HIV/AIDS related issues and how to protect their families against the epidemic and gender-based violence.
The Public Relations Officer encouraged men to be responsible, accountable and to stop acts of violence against women and children. He said where violence prevails communication and information sharing are usually compromised and therefore HIV/AIDS issues are never discussed. He said that women who are subjected to violence are susceptible to HIV infection mainly through submission to rape and unprotected sex. Assistant Commissioner Mbulawa said that violence, whether physical or emotional often leads to degrading acts such as aggravated assaults, rape, suicide and murder.
He challenged men to reinforce their efforts in the fight against the disease to achieve the National Strategic Framework for HIV/AIDS. Mr Mbulawa encouraged the Public Service College Staff to form a Committee that will continue educating the public against bad practices such as multiple concurrent sexual partnerships.
He said some men who are still dragging their feet to undergo male circumcision introduced in government health facilities concern Men Sector. He called upon the attendants to take advantage of the programme but he however, cautioned against relying on the initiative alone, as it has to be coupled with other strategies of practicing safe sex.
Mr Mbulawa expressed concern that statistics shows that the government continues to register new cases of HIV infections. In conclusion Mr Mbulawa said men have a responsibility of making sure that they build a safe Botswana by preventing these infections.
The police recorded 13 road accidents crashes in which 15 people died throughout the country last week from 5/11/12 to 11/11/12. A total of 35 people had serious injuries while 51 others escaped with minor ones. Of the 15 people who died, six were drivers, five passengers and four pedestrians.
In one of the accidents reported on Sunday a 39 year old man of Borolong died after the vehicle he was driving over turned near Francistown Airport. It is suspected that the driver lost control of vehicle when the accident occurred.
In yet another a 55 year old men of Phakalane was knocked to death by a motor vehicle at Mmamashia along Gaborone/Francistown road. The man was crossing the road when the accident occurred.
Preliminary investigations revealed that most of the accidents that occurred this week were as a result of negligence of drivers. The negligence was as a result of over speeding some in built-up areas.
The police would like to appeal to motorists to reduce speed particularly when they are in build-up areas to avoid unnecessary accidents. Pedestrians are also advised to make sure that it is safe before crossing the road.
The Botswana Police Service (BPS) has launched 60 Days of Action on Crime Prevention and Road Safety, an annual campaign that aims to vigorously curb crime in the last sixty days of the year.
Officially launching the campaign recently the Commissioner of Police, Mr Keabetswe Makgophe said the campaign is necessitated by the fact that crime and road accidents are usually at their peak during the festive season.
Mr Makgophe said that it is around this time of the year that they experience an increase in break-ins, robberies, theft and cases in which people are swindled large sums of money by con men. He however said that they intend to improve the situation by employing a zero tolerance towards crime. He said that there will be increased police visibility on the streets and roads to deter criminals and motorists from disobeying traffic laws.
He urged members of the public to help police in this fight by ensuring improved security in their homes and businesses. The media was implored to help by spreading crime prevention messages to sensitize the public during the campaign.
Road safety and crime prevention road shows, one of which was held in Gaborone recently, will also be conducted in Lobatse and Francistown as part of the campaign.
Crime can be tackled most effectively if law-abiding citizens, who are in the majority, could unite against the minority who commit it.
This was said by the Commissioner of Police, Mr Keabetswe Makgophe when addressing police officers and Crime Prevention Cluster members at Selibe Phikwe Police District recently.
He said the fight against crime calls for a collaboration between the police and law abiding citizens so that they can support each other. Mr Makgophe said without public support the police and other law enforcement agencies cannot alone make Selibe Phikwe safer place for investors.
He however, expressed concern that the public have little information of what happens to offenders after they have been caught by the police. He therefore, urged the police to always give feedback to the public on the status of their cases.
The Commissioner advised the police to increase their visibility on the streets and also improve their response time to reports. He said lack of confidence towards the police could result in serious consequences which could consequently result with the increase in crime.
For his part the Officer Commanding for Selibe Phikwe Police District, Senior Superintendent Takongwa Mazwiduma said Cluster Policing Committees and Police Volunteers have positively improved police visibility. He assured the Commissioner that they do everything possible to suppress crime.