Botswana. According to
Countryaah, Vice President and Minister of Finance Festus Mogae took office in April as new president. Then his
representative Ketumile Masire had decided to resign. In
July, former Vice President Ian Khama, the son of the
country's first President Seretse Khama, was appointed new
Vice President. In recent years, Ian Khama has led a major
In September, South African and Botswana troops jointly
intervened in Lesotho, whose government requested assistance
in fighting a revolt. Resistance became tougher than
expected and many victims were called in before the troops
began to withdraw after a few months.
During the year, Botswana was in political conflict with
Namibia over the right to some islands in a border river.
But basically, the battle was about control of the important
water resources. At the end of the year, Botswana received
hundreds of flying Namibian rebels who demanded independence
for the Caprivi Strip.
The economically important diamond industry was hit by
adversity due to sharply falling prices on the world market.
Botswana was thus threatened by the first government deficit
since the beginning of the 1980s.
In October, Botswana was identified in a UN report as the
second worst AIDS-afflicted country in Africa. Between four
and fifth adults are estimated to be HIV-infected, and the
average life expectancy of the population drops