All Must Protect DCEC Investigations

| May 18, 2015

The Directorate on Corruption and Economic Corruption (DCEC) says its investigations on corruption cases must always be protected.

DCEC director general, Ms Rose Seretse, said she was worried by media houses which compromised DCEC investigations by writing stories on corruption cases being investigated by her organisation.

Addressing a press conference at the DCEC headquarters in Gaborone on May 15, she urged the media to desist from writing prematurely on cases the DCEC was investigating. She said DCEC had a standoff with the media regarding some reports that it felt compromised its investigations.

“I wish to highlight that investigations remain highly confidential and should be protected at all times. This is because the purpose of an investigation is to establish the truth or otherwise of an investigation,” Ms Seretse said.

She warned that Section 44 of the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime Act (CECA) prohibits divulgence of information, which was still under DCEC investigation.

“Investigation that is disclosed prematurely is compromised because even the suspect at that stage may not even be aware that they are being investigated, and once alerted it is very obvious that they will destroy the very vital evidence that we need,” she said.

She therefore appealed to media to give DCEC space to investigate cases and bring them to a conclusion, saying feedback is always given at the end of every investigation.

She complained that the media sometimes wanted to put DCEC under pressure to succumb to their interest.

She said some media houses continue to report on matters which are still under investigation by DCEC and this in most cases jeopardise the chances of investigations being successful.

Regarding the recent furor which erupted after DCEC officers seized the Gazette Newspaper equipment, Seretse said the issue was a purely DCEC operation. She said the search warrant and the need to access the Gazette offices were done within the confines of law.

She said Section 13 of the Corruption and Economic Crime Act provides for a search with a warrant, while Section 14 provides for a search without a warrant in certain cases. She said going into premises searching and seizing what DCEC believe would assist the investigations is a normal course of investigating.

She however said the DCEC and media should cultivate a cordial working environment because her organisation views media as a critical stakeholder.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: News

Comments are closed.