Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) President, Sidney Pilane, has said that the opposition coalition Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) is destined to fail without BMD within its ranks. Pilane said this remarks when addressing the media this week about recent developments since the expulsion of BMD from the UDC.
Pilane, a founding member of BMD said it is without doubt that BMD was a vital cog in the partnership which delivered a historic 17 seats in the last general elections. He pointed out that their only aim as the BMD was to help build the opposition and not destroyed as they had been accused of by other opposition parties. ‘‘We left Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) to help build the opposition, it was unable to build itself. We gathered them and helped build them into something they had long struggled to build,’’ said Pilane.
He emphasised that had there been no BMD, UDC would never have won 17 parliamentary seats in 2014. Pilane said the 2014 success were all BMD efforts, initiatives and time. ‘‘I want to assure you, UDC will not retain those seats in 2019 if we are not a part of it, and there is no UDC without BMD and AP [Alliance for Progressives]. They need us,’’ Pilane cited. The BMD president said the UDC is led by selfish people who are only concerned about their personal interests and not that of the people.
Moreover, he said UDC will never be the same again following speculations that they were disputes over constituencies. Pilane stated that the two old opposition parties in Botswana National Front (BNF) and Botswana Congress Party (BCP) failed to build a meaningful opposition cooperation until BMD appeared in the picture. ‘‘We are not fighting with them, we are not fighting with anyone. We just need the UDC to realise their mistakes and apologise,’’ he explained.
Pilane articulated that the court case was just a way of trying to clear their party’s name. ‘‘We were said to have intentions to destroy the opposition, which was very untrue. There is no how we would never have not taken this matter to court. UDC needs to tell Batswana what we did wrong, let them bring fourth tangible evidence,’’ Pilane emphasised. When publicising this, Pilane assured the BMD members gathered at the conference that they will indeed win the court case. He stressed that UDC has failed dismally to explain why they had been kicked from the UDC.
He said that the UDC has never put to the table any sensible explanation. When expelling the BMD in October, the UDC President, Duma Boko said that the BMD misbehaved following their suspension. He had said that they raised with them certain issues that in terms of the constitution were categorised as acting against the interest of the UDC. Boko, who is also the BNF leader had late last year said that the only doubt one might have is whether UDC has taken that political decision procedurally and ‘‘I believe we have.’’
Boko had stressed that when the collective takes the decision to say it is not in the interest of the UDC then ‘‘no court in the world can say this is in the interest of the UDC. It’s not a call for the court to make but it is for the UDC to make. Courts don’t run political parties. Courts have even said it many times that politicians must not run to courts when they cannot take political decisions.’’ Pilane is convinced that BCP, which participated in the decision to throw BMD out of the coalition is not a legitimate member of the UDC.
In challenging the UDC’s decision to expel them from the coalition, BMD wants the court to set aside the decision on the basis that BCP participated in such resolution. Pilane said, if the case will not be resolved before elections, no party will contest general elections under the UDC ticket. Speaking at the same conference, Gilbert Mangole, who this week resigned from the position of the Opposition Whip, indicated that the only correspondence they received from the UDC, was the expulsion letter authored by Boko. He said contrary to reports that they were given an earlier correspondence to show cause why they should not be expelled from the UDC.
The Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) Central Committee (CC) meeting, chaired by President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi late last month, resolved that the party’s next Secretary-General (SG) should be a full-time employee based at Tsholetsa House and not active in politics.
The resolution by the CC, which Masisi proposed, is viewed as a ploy to deflate the incumbent, Mpho Balopi’s political ambitions and send him into political obscurity. The two have not been on good terms since the 2019 elections, and the fallout has been widening despite attempts to reconcile them. In essence, the BDP says that Balopi, who is currently a Member of Parliament, Minister of Employment, Labour Productivity and Skills Development, and a businessman, is overwhelmed by the role.
The Botswana Defence Force (BDF)-Namibians fatal shooting tragedy Inquest has revealed through autopsy report that the BDF carried over 800 bullets for the mission, 32 of which were discharged towards the targets, and 19 of which hit the targets.
This would mean that 13 bullets missed the targets-in what would be a 60 percent precision rate for the BDF operation target shooting. The Autopsy report shows that Martin Nchindo was shot with five (4) bullets, Ernst Nchindo five (5) bullets, Tommy Nchindo five (5) bullets and Sinvula Munyeme five (5) bullets. From the seven (7) BDF soldiers that left the BDF camp in two boats, four (4) fired the shots that killed the Namibians.
The former Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi’s decision to apply for the positions of United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) and their deputies (DSRSG), has left the government confused over whether to lend her support or not, WeekendPost has established.
Moitoi’s application follows the Secretary-General’s launch of the third edition of the Global Call for Heads and Deputy Heads of United Nations Field Missions, which aims to expand the pool of candidates for the positions of SRSG) and their deputies to advance gender parity and geographical diversity at the most senior leadership level in the field. These mission leadership positions are graded at the Under-Secretary-General and Assistant Secretary-General levels.