Marital rape debate divides Ntlo ya Dikgosi

Botswana, February 2015

Marital rape reached Ntlo ya Dikgosi, and divided traditional leaders.

Some dikgosi were clearly at pains to use politically correct tones.

While acknowledging that we are living in an era of globalisation and modernisation and also the need the need to walk in tandem with the rest of world, Kgosi Modise decried the country’s leadership tendency to copy everything from the so called civilised communities.

She reminded the House that a few years ago a court of law made a ruling on the matter.

Village court magistrate Lot Moroka dismissed rape charges laid by the estranged wife against her husband some years ago, arguing there was no rape against married couples.
Moroka has since been promoted to high benches as the high court judge.

He said the current crop of women were fond of giving some excuses when sexual advances were made by their legitimate husbands.

“Whilst debating over the issue we should be mindful and be reminded of the precedent set by the magistrate court,” Kgosi Modise said last week before Ntlo ya Dikgosi went for a recession after a two week long session.
Kgosi Machilidza argued sexual satisfaction of both parties was essential for the nurturing of the marriage institution.

“When a man proposes to a woman he cannot plainly say that he is mainly interested in that,” he said referring to sexual activity, adding “instead he will subtle it to entice his suitor.”

But as a matter of fact “that is what men want,” Machilidza said meaning physical sexual contact.

United Nations Populations Fund Botswana Assistant Representative Mareledi Segotso sparked the controversial debate when she briefed Ntlo ya Dikgosi over gender equality, lamenting over the abuse of boys and girls and women some of whom are raped under the name of marriage institution.

The chairman of Ntlo ya Dikgosi, Kgosi Puso Gaborone knows some of his male colleagues in the House who are the victims of marital rape but will not openly reveal so.

“But in the corridors under hush tones we discuss some of these challenging issues,” Gaborone said, calling for more scrutiny over the sticking issue.