President in Gaborone for Masire burial
PRESIDENT Mugabe will today join other leaders here for the burial of former Botswana President Sir Ketumile Masire at his birthplace in Khanye, southwest of Gaborone.
Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko is Acting President.
Sir Ketumile, who was Botswana’s second post-independence president from 1980 to 1989, died in hospital in Gaborone last week. He was 91. President Mugabe landed at the Sir Seretse Khama Airport in Gaborone last night, where he was received by Botswana’s Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry Vincent Seretse and officials from the Zimbabwean embassy. Botswana declared three days of national mourning following the death of Sir Ketumile.
The former President played a leading role in Southern Africa, especially in peace initiatives to end Mozambique’s long civil war pitting Renamo rebels against the government .
He also mediated the political crisis that hit Kenya, Swaziland and the DRC.
A respected statesman, Sir Ketumile was also chairperson of the International Panel or Eminent Personalities which investigated the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
Announcing the death of the former President, his private secretary, Fraser Tlhoiwe, said Sir Ketumile “died peacefully at Bakamoso private hospital surrounded by his family at 10:10pm on June 22, 2017.”
He had been hospitalised for surgery on June 16 and was thought to be stable.