In a bid to save lives over the Christmas holidays, Botswana Police Service launched their ‘60 Days of Action on Crime and Road Safety’ campaign in Tonota on Thursday.
The nationwide initiative runs from 1 November to 31 December and is an annual operation that dates back to 2011.
Speaking at the launch, Commissioner of Police, Keabetswe Makgophe explained the campaign is meant to ensure a safe and secure festive season for all Batswana.
He warned that while festive is supposed to be a time of celebration and peace, criminals take advantage of the season to rob and defraud innocent citizens of their valuable properties.
“The business community suffers even more losses to armed robbers. I urge businessman to insert alarms at their businesses and hire security officers,” Makgophe advised.
The top cop listed increased incidents of gender based violence, drug abuse and serious crime as other issues of concern during the festive period.
“We are keeping a close eye on those who beat women. Women are being assaulted, losing their lives at the hands of those who claim to love them. We are going to make sure such matters are taken to court.”
He revealed that to date, police had recorded 255 murder cases, over 100 of which were passion killings.
“So far we have recorded 1, 700 rape cases and 600 defilement cases which is very worrisome.
“Everyone who has sex with an underage minor will face the wrath of the law. And a parent who protects the man who defiled their daughters because of plastic bags of food and money they receive will be also charged with the defiling man,” Makgophe declared, before encouraging pastors to preach road safety as well as warning their congregation of the evils of rape and killings.
Turning his attention to road safety, Makgophe revealed that so far 389 people had died in road accidents this year. In 2018 the death toll stood at 462, while the year before saw 444 fatalities and 450 in 2016.
For her part, Botswana National Youth Council Board Member, Gorata Mubu urged the public to resist using cell phones when driving.
“A cell phone diverts a driver’s attention. The other thing youth gets excited of driving without licences. It is very dangerous as they end up causing accidents.
“I plead with the Commissioner to look at the point of putting white crosses where people died so it becomes a remembrance,” said Mubu.