Rosie Motene’s “incident” in Botswana in her own words.

By Drum Digital
01 December 2013

I was invited to Botswana by Berry Heart, whom I met last year in JHB. She and I are both ambassadors for UN Women arts advisory council, to end violence against women and children I was invited to Botswana for a number of reasons: I am her SA agent, I was supporting her at her book and CD launch where i gave a key note address and also to activate the One Billion Rising campaign. I am the JHb and North West coordinator and Berry Heart will represent Botswana. The week was filled with interviews, talks and discussions around how we can eradicate violence against women and children. The launch which was held on Thursday evening, went off well.

On Friday evening, i was invited to The sky lounge for a sun-downers and light dinner, we had a great time then we headed off to another event down the road, which was organised by Absolut vodka. It was myself, Berry Heart, Simba Mudereri and David.

The incident happened at a place organised by Absolut vodka, we were chilling at the pool deck! Then all of a sudden this guy comes shouting at David, as I turned around he punched me right in my face! I instantly felt my nose pop!

The people around me told him to apologise he refused! We then went downstairs, told security and management they refused to help as they know who this man is and do not want to get involved. They refused to call the police.

We made a few calls but no answer and we could not wait for an ambulance.

We called the police they didn’t come! I was in too much pain so they took me to the hospital!

On arrival the doctor did a ct scan and called the police again! The ct scan revealed that my nose is in fact fractured. The doctor on duty said i needed to be admitted and that i must wait for the surgeon to come on duty to look at my file and discuss what surgery will be needed.

This was approximately 2h00

I tried calling our embassy but it was closed and the message stated that they will only reopen on Monday

When I heard that the man who hit me was very connected and known for this type of behaviour, I feared, so I called out on twitter n FB for assistance as I was worried he would make contact with me. I simply wanted to get home.

I spoke to Hlomla Dandala and he suggested we get this on radio, ‘Phat Joe’ and ‘Pearl’ then called me! Their support was astounding and it was that discussion that prompted The High commission.

During my admission the nurses on duty were like angels from above, they assisted me and calmed me down as I was quite anxious and scared.

The SA high commission arrived and called the police again. In the interim the Botswana police said they were on their way. They only arrived at about 9 to look at me. When seeing that SA high commission was present they said they would return to take a statement! They came back after 45 mins to an hour!

Meanwhile my good friend and lawyer at home booked me a ticket so I could get home!

The surgeron (surgeon) who I had been waiting for arrived, did not even take a look at my file he just looked at me and said I could leave. Once again the SA high commission intervened asking how he could make a diagnosis without even looking at my file! He returned reiterating that my nose was fractured and I was alright to fly!

We then dashed to the airport and I made my flight home! On arrival at OR Tambo I went ti (to) Milpark hospital and the doctor adivsed (advised) that I didn’t need to be readmitted but see an ENT. This will be on Tuesday as i have to wait for the swelling to go down.

I’m going to see a trauma counselor as I need to debrief and be strong again!.......

It is such a shame that this has occurred and in a country where the people are some warm, loving and friendly. Its a disgrace that people with power have the right to do what they want. it is a disgrace that i had to get my government to assist with a matter that could have been handled by officials on the ground.

Once I have healed and dealt with the past few days, the struggle will continue. How many other women  have endured this and who were ignored and silenced?

Enough is enough. ….Rosie Motene.

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