It is with great sadness that the NEPAD Agency pays tribute to the former president of Botswana Sir Ketumile Masire.
Having played a leading role in his country’s quest for independence and also in the country’s new government, Sir Masire was instrumental in facilitating and protecting Botswana’s steady financial growth and development.
Today, Botswana is a leading example in Africa, as a country that has a stable democracy, enjoying multi-party elections, with little corruption and a relatively good human rights record. It is with heaviness of heart to learn of the passing of one of the country’s founding fathers who will no longer continue to give, not only to his country, but to the rest of Africa, his guidance and wisdom.
Sir Masire will not only be missed by Batswana, but by the rest of the continent. Who can forget, for instance, his selflessness in putting the needs of other nations before his own, when he added his efforts to end apartheid in South Africa and also investigated the genocide in Rwanda in 1994? In the SADC region, Sir Masire was also at the helm of efforts towards collective development.
Having served as the second president of Botswana, Sir Masire graciously handed over the power baton, demonstrating true democratic leadership in a country that is now a model middle-income nation on the continent. To his family, relatives and friends, and to all Batswana, we can only say that such quality of leadership is rare. It is our sincere hope that Sir Ketumile Masire’s leadership qualities can continue to be exemplary for both the current and future leaders of Africa.
May his soul rest in peace.
Dr Ibrahim Assane Mayaki
NEPAD Agency CEO