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Boko ropes in EFF legal brains on IEC case

Publishing Date : 24 June, 2019

Author : KETUMILE RAMATITI

Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) President Duma Boko has named a strong bench of advocates in a case which might see him and his wife struck off the Voters’ roll for violating section 67 of the constitution.


The reason why Boko should be struck out of the voter’s roll is because he is not a resident of Phase II in Gaborone as he purports rather his principal residence is Tlokweng. This is according to one John Keemenao Siele who is represented by Boko’s political nemesis Advocate Sidney Pilane.

Although in his natural element Boko dismisses the case as a nonsensical stunt by the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC), he has called on renowned South Africa based lawyers to argue on his behalf. The two attorneys have successfully represented South African leftist party Economic Freedom Front (EFF) in the past and Boko reads confidence from such. “This one (IEC case) that is coming is pity that I won’t be at the forefront, but the likes of     Adv. Tembeka Ngcukaitobi and others will be there. They will cut it into shreds because there is no case on that nonsense,” Boko said.  


Ngcukaitobi will be assisted by another hardened local lawyer Dick Bayford among others. The case proves to be a gruelling battle between the three advocates with Pilane optimistic that he will wipe away his rival in what observers believe it will be an interesting dress rehearsal for the August case which Pilane’s BMD has dragged Boko’s UDC to courts for expelling the former’s party from umbrella project. The three advocates will also be representing the UDC in August case.


However Boko has bestowed the two EFF men with trust in a case which is likely to halt his burgeoning political career. Ngcukaitobi’s resume speaks volume of his ability. He has recently chaired an investigation into allegations of racial profiling against black, coloured and Indian doctors. He also formed part of the EFF legal team arguing for the state capture report. The 39 year old’s sharp legal mind has also seen him breaking barriers to become a Senior Counsel (SC) just eight years after becoming an Advocate. All along the period for one to be considered for appointment as an SC has been 12 years.


Allegations against the leader of Opposition (LOO) if argued successfully in court may make him ineligible to contest for election at the Bonnington North constituency allegedly because it is not his principal residence. This could also mean that Boko will not run as a Presidential candidate against Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) leader, Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi and Alliance for Progressives (AP) president Ndaba Gaolathe. Boko’s case has been postponed to a later date, and Pilane has indicated that all the evidence they gathered was to ensure that they assist the magistrate in determining the outcome of the trial.


BOKO TO CHALLENGE PUBLIC ORDER ACT

Boko has also revealed that before he ‘ascends to presidency he would like to have challenged the Public Order Act’. “I don’t think anyone deserves a permit to address a rally. Public Order Act is unconstitutional to a certain extent,” he argues. Boko believes this is done to suppress democracy; “The only limitation on the right to speech is what Americans say ‘time, place and manner.’ For example you cannot address a rally near Marina at certain times because patients would be resting. But on other places where there are no limitations, freedom of expression should be readily enjoyed,” he stressed.


He also says criticized the police for being naïve and brutal on the people when they try to express themselves. “The police’s heavy handedness and brutality is not right, let the people speak. If you deter people from using a hall for a rally you are suppressing democracy and this could lead to what Malema (Julius) refers to as un-led revolution. Again if you take placards written Masisi must resign what do you get? Shamboks and all the stuff while in fact you are voicing out your frustrations, look at what happened to those unemployed youths who marched to parliament.”


On other matters, the LOO says they will parade all their candidates before the opening and closing of the UDC congress billed for next month. “We will have a joint opening and closing ceremonies in between individual parties will break-away for their own meeting before we close off,” he said. UDC leaders is upbeat that the party would have assumed state power in October saying the ruling BDP is bed-ridden.

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