Makopong Sub-Chief, Kgosi Vincent Phologo has been relieved of his duties, this publication can revealThis follows a protracted dispute between Makopong villagers and the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development regarding Kgosi Phologo’s ascendency to the village’s bogosi in 2016.
Some residents approached the High Court to challenge the then minister, Slumber Tsogwane’s decision to appoint Phologo as Kgosi without holding elections.
In February this year, High Court Judge Michael Leburu ruled that Minister of Local Government, Slumber Tsogwane’s 2016 decision to appoint a Kgosi for Makopong village without following proper procedure should be reversed. Judge Leburu described the minister’s actions as “un-procedural” and must therefore be set aside meaning that Kgosi Vincent Motlhabane Phologo should vacate his seat as Sub-Chief for Makopong village and new elections be called. Last month, just before he was appointed the country’s vice president, Tsogwane told this publication that his ministry through the Tribal Administration is appealing Leburu’s judgment.
However, it seems the newly appointed minister of Local Government Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi will not go the court route. The minister has since relieved Phologo of his duties.
In a letter signed by Assistant Minister Botlogile Tshireletso, she explained, regarding the court judgment that, “the judgment then in effect, set your appointment aside and as we all are subjects of the rule of law, we have to see to it that the full effect of the said judgment is realised in practice and spirit.”
The letter which was copied to the Kgalagadi District Commissioner and the Tribal Secretary further reads in part that, “You shall cease to perform your duties as a Sub-Chief effective 9th April 2018. Meanwhile, Minister Venson-Moitoi will address residents of Makopong next week Tuesday to try and resolve the village’s bogosi dispute. The minister confirmed to this publication that she will address a kgotla meeting next week Tuesday to try and solve the matter.
Phologo was appointed following the death of his father Kgosi Shadreck Hatshelotlhe Phologo. However, residents of Makopong, a village in the Kgalagadi District, were against Vincent Phologo’s appointment arguing that it was un-procedural and unlawful as chieftainship had always been determined through elections in the village. Leburu ruled in the applicants’ favour and ordered that the appointment of Vincent Phologo be set aside.