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Republic of Botswana

Note: On February 1, 2011, Ponatshego Kedikilwe (Botswana Democratic Party) was appointed by the president as acting vice president “until further notice” in the absence of Mompati Merafhe, who was hospitalized in South Africa.

Political Status: Independent republic within the Commonwealth since September 30, 1966.

Area: 231,804 sq. mi. (600,372 sq. km.).

Population: 2,063,370 (2012E—UN); 2,098,018 (2012E—U.S. Census).

Major Urban Centers (2005E): GABORONE (213,000), Francistown (91,000), Molepolole (64,000), Selebi-Pikwe (54,000).

Official Language: English (Setswana is widely spoken).

Monetary Unit: Pula (official rate October 3, 2011: 7.45 pula = $1US).

President: Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Seretse Ian KHAMA (Botswana Democratic Party); appointed to a five-year term on April 1, 2008, by President Festus MOGAE (Botswana Democratic Party), who retired the same day after having served as president since April 1, 1998; sworn ...

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