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Rowdy BDF soldier in attempted murder charges

FILE PIC: A General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG)

A rowdy Botswana Defence Force (BDF) Private who held his colleagues at gunpoint demanding warfare equipment has been charged with attempted murder, armed robbery and malicious damage to government property.

The 26-year-old soldier who left duty at Rakhuna Military Garrison near Ramatlabama without permission on December 21st and later sneaked back into the military camp on December 23 is alleged to have pointed a service pistol at his colleagues and threatened to shoot them if they did not comply with his demands.

The suspect is alleged to gave dug his way into the camp at an unused eastern gate and cut the fence before entering the sentry room where he found two of his colleagues and demanded keys to the General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG).

He is also said to have ordered the two soldiers to load the gun with 200 live rounds of ammunition.

As if that was not enough the suspect is said to have ordered his fellow Privates to march to the armory to awaken a Lance Corporal who was on guard.

The rowdy soldier is said to have further demanded to be given rocket propelling guns, their shells and charges as well as high explosive grenades, tear gas, rifles and charged magazines.

While preparing the demanded weapons, the Lance Corporal is said to have noticed that the suspect was drunk and he swiftly managed to disarm and detain him.

Superintendent Zibani Mbisana of Ramatlabama Police Station confirmed that they are investigating the case and that the suspect is in police custody. “We are holding in custody a 26-year-old suspect who has been charged with attempted murder, armed robbery and malicious damage to property. At this stage I cannot divulge any more information as investigations are still under way,” he said.