Corpun file 21073
Sunday Standard, Gaborone, 1 February 2009
Chiefs want re-introduction of back lashings
By John Regonamamye
Overwhelmed by trying numerous cases involving decadent
youths, Dikgosi Thursday were up in arms and called on the
government to revert to the old system where the culprits were
whipped on the back instead of on the buttocks.
The chiefs argued that it was an effective remedy to the
rampant delinquency currently perpetrated by the youths.
Contributing to the motion raised by Barolong chief, Kgosi
Lotlaamoreng II, pleading with the government to re-introduce
back lashing instead of the current buttocks-lashing, the Dikgosi
attributed the escalating crime amongst the youths to the lenient
sentences imposed on them.
"Crime is escalating at a horrifying rate in this country,
particularly amongst the youths," said Kgosi Mosadi Seboko
of Bamalete. "They insult, steal and assault one another
almost on a daily basis after a drinking binge and the cases end
at our tables, only for us to mete out a lighter sentence as
dictated by law."
She said that the slashing on the buttocks contributes to these
hideous incidences and should be replaced by back lashing.
"Not only are we destined to prosecute cases, Batswana needs
to be assisted on varies programmes initiated by the government,
which include, among others, CEDA and Young Farmers Fund. We are
the right persons to assist on such initiatives but we spend too
much time prosecuting petty immoral cases committed by the
Click to enlarge
She echoed the same sentiments raised by Kgosi Lotlaamoreng
which called for proof to be provided by those who are against
the reintroduction of back lashing.
In the late 80s, the government prohibited back lashings and,
instead, introduced the controversial buttock lashing but most
Batswana feel that lenient move helped to worsen crime the
country is grappling with.
No sooner would the court carry out a buttock lashing than the
same offender re-appear on a similar offence.
To bring home their argument, Dikgosi related instances when
the culprits would plead for strokes instead of other sentences -
a development they believe suggested strokes on the buttocks are
They said that suggestions that back strokes could cause kidney
problems are blatant lies designed to conceal the truth.
For his part, Kgosi Seepapitso was baffled by the
government’s willingness to impose and carry out capital
punishment but refrain from invoking back strokes.
Adds Bakwena chief Kgosi Kgari: "Corporal punishment is ideal for it reduces government expenditure. Prisoners uniforms,
ration and the electricity they use come as government
expenditure. With corporal punishment all is done instantly and
individuals continue with their everyday living."
Presenting his motion earlier, Kgosi Lotlaamoreng argued there was just too much escalating crime as a result of lighter sentences such as buttock lashing. He urged the government to
reintroduce back lashings.
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