â€¨With her only endorsements coming from former President Lt Gen Dr Ian Khama and Legislator, Samson Guma Moyo Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) presidential hopeful, and Member of Parliament for Serowe South Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi has expressed confidence that she will emerge victorious in the party leadership race billed for the 5th of April 2019 in Kang.
The incumbent party president Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi is being challenged by Venson-Moitoi in the historical race where a sitting president is being challenged for the first time, with observers agreeing that this is foreign to the BDP tradition. Venson-Moitoi told this publication this week that her hopes are very high in the contest and dismissed Masisi and his public recent endorsements by several key party functionaries like former President Festus Mogae, party elders, union leaders and scores of several party law makers.
She said: “Endorsements are just endorsements, I got nothing to worry. They are just people saying we are endorsing, then what? Let me show you the sequence. After they endorse Masisi, they then will have to go and elect delegates. Those delegates are the ones whom will actually cast their votes at the congress in Kang. And I bank I most of them to vote me. So am not worried.” According to Moitoi, those who are busy making noise on the endorsements probably only 10 of them are going to the congress to actually reach out to that ballot and therefore would not make any effect and impact.
“So far on the ground I don’t believe am doing badly. People will vote for me. But I never count my chickens before they hatch. I don’t want to be boastful either. But know that I never plan to fail,” she highlighted to this publication. The Serowe South legislator also reiterated that “my full focus for now is on the presidential campaign to be BDP president and am running full steam ahead.” Meanwhile she stated that as an MP she is stepping down as prior promised and therefore will fulfill her promises. “So yes parliamentary I won’t be coming back,” she said.
UNFAZED BY CHANCES OF DISCIPLINARY ACTION
Venson Moitoi has stated that she awaits the disciplinary action if any from the party. The Serowe South Member of Parliament told WeekendPost that she welcomes any disciplinary and ready to defend it. “If someone wants to take action they can take it. I will just wait for it that is if it is coming, and we will see what to do next after that. If someone says they want to discipline you, want can you do, leave them to do it,” the maverick legislator said.
It is not clear whether Moitoi will be served with disciplinary letters but so far letters have been delivered to the Tati East law maker Moyo Guma, Tati West legislator Biggie Butale and scores of Councilors particularly those who attended an unsanctioned party meeting recently in Serowe.
The meeting dubbed Serowe elders meeting was led by Prince Moitoi, a husband to the Serowe South legislator, Moyo, with the special appearance of former President Lt. Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama. Khama has publicly endorsed Moitoi for the party president. Ironically, no formal complaint has been lodged with the party against Venson-Moitoi and Khama, despite the duo having attended and addressed the meeting.
While there is no hard-and-fast rule in politics, former Molepolole North Member of Parliament, Mohamed Khan says populism acts in the body politic have forced him to quit active partisan politics. He brands this ancient ascription of politics as fake and says it lowers the moral compass of the society.
Khan who finally tasted political victory in the 2014 elections after numerous failed attempts, has decided to leave the ‘dirty game’, and on his way out he characteristically lashed at the current political leaders; including his own party president, Advocate Duma Boko. “I arrived at this decision because I have noticed that there are no genuine politics and politicians. The current leaders, Boko and President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi are fake politicians who are just practicing populist politics to feed their egos,” he said.
Former Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) parliamentary hopeful, Lawrence Ookeditse has rejected the idea of taking up a crucial role in the Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) Central Committee following his arrival in the party this week. According to sources close to development, BPF power brokers are coaxing Ookeditse to take up the secretary general position, left vacant by death of Roseline Panzirah-Matshome in November 2020.
Ookeditse’s arrival at BPF is projected to cause conflicts, as some believe they are being overlooked, in favour of a new arrival. The former ruling party strategist has however ruled out the possibility of serving in the party central committee as secretary general, and committed that he will turn down the overture if availed to him by party leadership.
Ookeditse, nevertheless, has indicated that if offered another opportunity to serve in a different capacity, he will gladly accept. “I still need to learn the party, how it functions and all its structures; I must be guided, but given any responsibility I will serve the party as long as it is not the SG position.”
“I joined the BPF with a clear conscious, to further advance my voice and the interests of the constituents of Nata/Gweta which I believe the BDP is no longer capable to execute.” Ookeditse speaks of abject poverty in his constituency and prevalent unemployment among the youth, issues he hopes his new home will prioritise.
He dismissed further allegations that he resigned from the BDP because he was not rewarded for his efforts towards the 2019 general elections. After losing in the BDP primaries in 2018, Ookeditse said, he was offered a job in government but declined to take the post due to his political ambitions. Ookeditse stated that he rejected the offer because, working for government clashed with his political journey.
He insists there are many activists who are more deserving than him; he could have chosen to take up the opportunity that was before him but his conscious for the entire populace’s wellbeing held him back. Ookeditse said there many people in the party who also contributed towards party success, asserting that he only left the BDP because he was concerned about the greater good of the majority not individualism purposes.
According to observers, Ookeditse has been enticed by the prospects of contesting Nata/Gweta constituency in the 2024 general election, following the party’s impressive performance in the last general elections. Nata/Gweta which is a traditional BDP stronghold saw its numbers shrinking to a margin of 1568. BDP represented by Polson Majaga garnered 4754, while BPF which had fielded Joe Linga received 3186 with UDC coming a distant with 1442 votes.
There are reports that Linga will pave way for Ookeditse to contest the constituency in 2024 and the latter is upbeat about the prospects of being elected to parliament. Despite Ookeditse dismissing reports that he is eying the secretary general position, insiders argue that the position will be availed to him nevertheless.
Alternative favourite for the position is Vuyo Notha who is the party Deputy Secretary General. Notha has since assumed duties of the secretariat office on the interim basis. BPF politburo is expected to meet on 25th of January 2020, where the vacancy will be filled.
Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) big wigs have decided to cancel a retreat with the party legislators this weekend owing to increasing numbers of Covid-19 cases. The meeting was billed for this weekend at a place that was to be confirmed, however a communique from the party this past Tuesday reversed the highly anticipated meeting.
“We received a communication this week that the meeting will not go as planned because of rapid spread of Covid-19,” one member of the party Central Committee confirmed to this publication. The gathering was to follow the first of its kind held late last year at party Treasurer Satar Dada’s place.