Botswana. According to Countryaah, Botswana’s profitable diamond industry entered a new phase during the year when the diamond cartel De Beers moved its world-leading sales and marketing of diamonds to Botswana’s capital Gaborone. The country is already the world’s largest producer, with the world’s largest diamond mine. The San people (formerly called Bushmen) won a victory against the government through a ruling in June that ruled that a settlement in western Botswana should not be forced to relocate. According to the court’s ruling, over 600 residents of Ranyane in the Ghanzi district are to be left in peace, despite their settlement being in a planned wildlife corridor between two wildlife sanctuaries, Kalahari and Kgalagadi.
Botswana protested in August against the African Union and the regional cooperation body SADC, both declaring that the Zimbabwe parliamentary elections were free. Botswana questioned the election and its results, and called for an independent review. But at the SADC Summit, Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe was elected Vice President without Botswana protesting.
In September, an appeals court granted 80-year-old Edith Mmusi and her three sisters to inherit the family’s house. The same ruling the year before had been appealed, but now it was finally determined that it was contrary to Botswana’s constitution to prevent women from inheriting the family home. According to old custom, the inheritance right lies with the closest male relative, a system that is still maintained by traditional chieftains. It was considered a historic rash with repercussions throughout southern Africa when Edith Mmusi, Bakhani Moima (83), Jane Lekoko (77) and Mercy Ntsehkisang (68) were granted the right to the simple home.
Media reported in October that the government planned to arrest and deport gay immigrants as part of the fight against the spread of HIV infection. The government demented and said that the plan was to expel foreign prostitutes. According to the authorities, over 60% of the prostitutes in the capital Gaborone are HIV-infected. Botswana has a large number of refugees from neighboring countries and has introduced strict immigration policy. The country also has a ban on homosexuality, referred to in the law as “unnatural crimes” and “indecent acts”, which can give up to five years in prison.
During the year, it was reported that the country’s president Ian Khama was smacked in the face by a cheetah when the animal was fed into its enclosure at an army facility, where the president was a spectator. The cheetah is the world’s fastest mammal and took the head of state and his bodyguard with surprise when it jumped up. However, although the Khama had to be patched, the injuries were reported to be minor.