The Botswana High Court, in a groundbreaking decision, ruled on November 14, 2014, that members of a lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights group could formally register their organisation.
It’s not illegal to be gay in Botswana, but sometimes it must feel like it. Just ask Lesbians, Gays and Bisexuals of Botswana (LEGABIBO), a non-profit group that’s been fighting for a decade to get official standing in the country, a battle that will come to a head over the next couple of weeks.
The Media Institute of Southern Africa recently observed the conduct of the media and electoral bodies during Botswana’s 2014 parliamentary and local government elections, held on 24 October 2014. The mission found that the media performed well, though there could be improvements.
Editor Outsa Mokone was arrested by police on 8 September 2014. His colleague, reporter Edgar Tsimane, recently fled Botswana after being threatened over an article for the Sunday Standard.
On 29 November, Midweek Sun photographer Tshekiso Tebalo was assaulted by Mochudi Center Chiefs’ football team official, Sebele Morakanyane, at the University of Botswana Stadium, as he covered a game between the Mochudi Center Chiefs and the Township Rollers.
The Printing and Publishing Company Botswana refused to print the 20–26 January 2013 edition of The Patriot on Sunday, creating concern about how the editorial independence of the paper has been threatened.
Although ARTICLE 19 welcomes the initiative to draft a law on access to information, it falls short of international and regional standards on freedom of expression and requires amendments.
According to media reports, Yarona FM broadcast allegations that the MP was bribed while accompanying the under 23 national football team on a friendly match in China.
Two photojournalists were arrested and released after “cutting a deal” with a police officer, whereby they were forced to delete pictures depicting police harassment.
Lefoko Mogapaesi was arrested and detained while reporting on a high-profile case.
The Bakgatla tribe chief withdrew the lawsuits in an out of court settlement.
The code of conduct would have gone a long way in enforcing equal coverage of political parties during elections, says MISA.
The CEO of Gabz FM radio station banned all political broadcasts on the station, reportedly following a complaint from the ruling party.