A retired school teacher, Gladys Selelo on Tuesday launched Bagolo Society Centre, a registered society that will take care of the elderly people in Selebi Phikwe. The senior citizen empowerment society will also build an elderly Day-Care Centre where services like health care will be offered to the elderly at the comfort of their centre.
Selelo who is the founder of the society was confronted by loneliness upon her retirement as she stays home alone while her children have built homes and families of their own. She says the initiative was born out of the frustrations of staying alone and witnessing the elders endure long hours in queues to access various services.
Until it has managed to build the centre, the society will be operating from Adoni Church or any other place as may be decided by the committee. The society’s objective is to build support systems where awareness of the aged persons shall be supported to nurture social morality as well as providing social activities designed to reduce loneliness among the elders and promote self-confidence and self-worth. “The society seeks to create a community where the old aged live happily together, share ideas, console each other and develop friendship,” she said.
Selelo added that the centre will promote senior citizen empowerment by engaging in economic activities like growing vegetable, pottery and knitting which can then be sold to the community at art exhibitions and agricultural shows. The society also seeks to promote cultural stability in the community through sharing of cultural norms of the different tribes in the country thereby creating an atmosphere where the aged citizens can trace their relations. This initiative will see the elders enjoy free socialisation within the community they live in and help them bring back their dignity and pride as senior citizens whose contribution to the society is appreciated and recognised.
Membership is open to persons above 60 years of age, those who stay alone and lack care and the elders who need assistance on medical issues. In his remarks at the launch, the Deputy Mayor of Selebi Phikwe, Molefi Pilane urged members of the society to work hard to reclaim their status in the society as the fore bearers of today’s vibrant society in a modern economy. He urged elders to join the society and ensure that the centre is built so that they can enjoy its full benefits.
Pilane commended Selelo for establishing the society, indicating that it will foster important inter-generational understanding that will break down the barriers between the young and the elderly. He pointed out that the younger generation must appreciate the knowledge and experience of the senior citizens so as to foster common understanding between groups of people in the society. The Deputy President at Kagiso Customary Court where the launch was held, Francinah Legwaila also appealed to the elders to come together as one and ensure that they honour the scheduled meetings to discuss the business of the society.
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.