Murder suspect accuses police of plotting to kill

A suspect in the 2011 murder of an Asian businessman near Ramotswa back in 2011 is convinced security agents are out to kill him. Bakang Magashula, 37, of Ramotswa lives in fear of his life and those close to him after members of the Ramotswa Police allegedly fired three shots at him at Taung ward over the festive season.

Magashula, who is currently on bail, said trouble started when he visited his girlfriend at her family’s homestead in Ramotswa on the evening of 26th  December.
“I got into an altercation with my girlfriend’s uncle who demanded to know why I wanted to see her,” he explained.

After a heated exchange of words Magashula said he  kicked open one of the house doors at the homestead before his girlfriend told him to leave. According to Magashula, the   matter was reported to the Ramotswa police on 27th December.

On  28th December, Magashula alleges that 13 police officers and two members of the Botswana Defence Force came  to arrest him  inTaung. “I saw them from 20 metres away and before I knew it there were three shots fired and one of the bullets landed close to my feet,” he said.Magashula said  he told his girlfriend and her brother, who were with him, to go home before he fled the scene.

Despite shots being allegedly fired at him Magashula said he was neither aggressive nor armed when the police came to arrest him. “I handed myself to the Ramotswa Police the following day. Why would I flee from a minor charge like causing malicious damage to property?” he asked rhetorically. Magashula said he was detained by the police for more that 48 hours before being arraigned before the Ramotswa Magistrate’s Court on 31 December, adding that the court gave permission for him to be detained for another seven days.

Following the events of 26th December, Magashula now faces a count of causing malicious damage to property after unlawfully damaging a door lock worth P250.
On count two he faces a charge of criminal trespass after breaking and entering into the house and intruding upon the privacy of the lawful owner of the house.
Speaking to The Midweek Sun this week, Botswana Police’s public relations officer Christopher Mbulawa confirmed they received a report of malicious damage caused to property on 25th December involving Bakang Magashula who had fled the scene.

“On the 28th December at about 2230hrs, the suspect reappeared at the same yard and the police were alerted. The suspect apparently threw objects at the police who responded by firing warning shots before he disappeared,” Mbulawa said.

According to Mbulawa, Magashula later reappeared at around 0200hrs when law enforcement officers fired warning shots but he ran away.
“The suspect later handed himself to the police. He also has several cases pending before court, including threat to kill,” he said, adding that the matter is a subject of police investigation.

Mbulawa said every attempt is made to arrest a suspect before force is used. He added that every case is unique and is treated differently depending on issues on the ground.