The SA National Defence Force (SANDF) “rejects with contempt” allegations of apparent involvement in an allegedly soon-to-be staged coup d’état in neighbouring Botswana.
At the weekend Botswana’s Sunday Standard reported the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) was on red alert in anticipation of a coup. This, the paper said, “followed credible intelligence from the SA Defence Force (sic) and the United Nations that a coup was building up in Botswana”.
It was “revealed” that Brigadier Modise Tlhage, BDF head of Military Intelligence, received “tip-offs and enquiries from colleagues in the SANDF about a looming coup”. This was followed by “a senior executive to the commander of the BDF ground forces” receiving similar information from a United Nations source in South Africa, according to the Sunday Standard report.
These developments saw BDF commander, Lieutenant General Placid Segokgo, informing President Mokgweetsi Masisi the national military was being placed on red alert – the highest level of emergency in the army and security warning systems, according to the newspaper.
The SANDF reaction came in the form of a statement issued by its Director: Corporate Communication Brigadier General Mafi Mgobozi.
“The SANDF notes with dismay adverse claims on certain Botswana media platforms alleging the SANDF had credible intelligence about a looming coup in Botswana. The SANDF wishes to state the reports contain factual inaccuracies and rejects with contempt allegations the SANDF had information that a coup was plotted against the government of Botswana,” the single paragraph statement said.