The son of the late former Botswana president Sir Ketumile Masire, Mmetla says his father was a family man, who would spare his family time, despite his official work. A memorial service in honour of Masire is underway in the capital Gaborone. Mmetla Masire says his father was also a disciplinarian. “One thing he was very clear and good about, was his ability to separate and wear different hurts under different situations. One of the things he did not bombard us with, was his political issues and other things from work. When it was family time, it was family time.”

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The late former president is being honoured for his contribution towards creating stability in the SADeC region. Former Mozambique President Armando Guebuza says Masire was instrumental in forging peace and stability in his country, when his country knew no peace.

“He did his contribution to the history, not only of Botswana, but of Southern Africa, struggling to free our countries from apartheid and also from colonialism, and afterwards to building the SADeC. In the specific case of Mozambique, he also had lot of contribution when we had problems of destabilisation. He was with us there, and helping to create environment that made it possible to achieve peace.”

– By Itumeleng Kgajane