US must not put up military bases in Africa

A week or so ago, I read a front-page article in Botswana's The Guardian newspaper that former president Festos Mogae intimated that the US can establish a military base in Botswana.

A week or so ago, I read a front-page article in Botswana's The Guardian newspaper that former president Festos Mogae intimated that the US can establish a military base in Botswana.

He said the US was welcome to establish the base. Botswana's Vice-President Mompati Merafe was quoted as saying Botswana was not approached or informed.

But it is not a question of being approached or informed. It goes to the heart of sanctity of the inviolable sovereignty of the African continent. The US cannot be allowed to establish a military base anywhere in Africa, let alone in southern Africa, to undermine the sovereignty of the African continent.

Some would say that Botswana is a sovereign country and can do as it pleases . There is a Setswana saying : matlo go sha mabapi, which when loosely translated means, when a house catches fire, the neighbours' houses are likely to burn too .

Botswana may not be aware that the West wants to re-colonise Africa because of its resources and it uses military bases and the World Trade Organisation to do this.

If Botswana allows the US to build a military base, then Angola, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Namibia should blockade Botswana and see which country's air space it will use to fly goods to and from Botswana.

Ban war. Down with military bases in Africa, down!

Sam Ditshego, Kagiso

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