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Modubule, Mangole want Boko to intervene

UDC President; Duma Boko

Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) Chairman, Nehemiah Modubule has revealed that his faction has resolved to engage Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) leader Duma Boko and different social groups in an attempt to break the paralysis consuming his party.

Modubule said that they have resolved to seek audience with Boko, UDC Chairman Motlatsi Molapisi, the clergy, labour unions, and, University of Botswana Democracy Research Project, as well as the 2011 conveners of opposition cooperation talks, Lebang Mpotokwane among others, in a bid to save the party from itself and break the ensuing factional standoff.

Modubule said that the purpose is to brief the organisations and UDC coalition leaders about BMD’s National Executive Committee (NEC) paralysis and conflict to avert the mooted party Special Congress, which he says, will only intensify the complications bedeviling his party.

Remarkably, the former Lobatse Member of Parliament revealed that, so far, no one, even the conveners of opposition talks, has come forward in an attempt to deescalate the rising tension and mediate reconciliation between the two brawling faction’s despite their skirmishes threatening to boil over into the UDC coalition.  

Modubule said: “We have taken this step because we believe that these issues can be addressed by engaging one another. We don’t see why we cannot talk about these issues because anything called a Special Congress will only worsen these issues.”

He further said that calling a Special Congress to resolve BMD crisis is not a solution, as it risks haemorraging the country’s youngest political party from inside, before it grows.

Modubule described the mooted Special Congress to be an exercise of caressing egos at the detriment of the party as it will pit supporters of the two factions against each other.

However, the rivalling faction marshalled by party President Ndaba Gaolathe and his deputy Wynter Mmolotsi, believe that the Special Congress is a right antidote for the paralysis engulfing the party.

Mmolotsi told this publication that unlike the 2011 opposition parties’ convention that resulted in cobbling together opposition parties into UDC, the current situation in the BMD is an intra-party matter that has to be remedied by Congress because party leaders are accountable to party members.

He further said that it would be unfair to think that Congress, which gave the current NEC a mandate to steward the party, is only needed when voting and cannot solve the problems of the same NEC they voted into power.

He said that as per the party constitution the Special Congress is a consultative meeting and not a platform where some party members are going to be purged.

“That is a consultative gathering; and not convention where some people are going to be purged as some comrades seem to think,” said Mmolotsi.

He also said that all the regions that his faction has so far visited have acceded to convening the Special Congress, and they include Southern region, Kweneng, Gaborone, Serowe, Maun and Francistown regions.

Perhaps as a sign that the factionalism gripping the party will not abate anytime soon, Mmolotsi said that they will continue with the regional consultations.
The yearlong BMD troubles started with the membership reapplication of former presidential aspirant, Sydney Pilane back into the BMD.

Pilane’s detractors raise his lawyer-client ties with Directorate of Intelligence and Security Services (DISS) boss Isaac Kgosi, a man deeply unpopular in opposition party quarters, as a reason for their distrust. In that regard, some in the rivalling faction have labeled Pilane a State sponsored agent provocateur.

Further, they view his reentrance into the party with cynicism because a few months before his reapplication, Pilane had strongly contested allegations that he harbored intentions to come back into the party, denying intentions to challenge Gaolathe for BMD presidency and ultimately UDC leader Duma Boko, for the leadership of the coalition.

They further see him as a man who abandoned the party in 2012 amid a mass exodus of leadership defectors back to the ruling BDP, long before it attained success inside the UDC fold and now wants in when things are looking up.

Pilane left BMD after losing to the late Gomolemo Motswaledi for BMD presidency, allegedly to further his legal career by positioning himself for the position of a High Court Judge.

However, when he left, he said to have gifted the party a sum of P5000 and instructed party leadership to always come to him when in need of financial assistance, albeit through discreet channels. Pilane is also said to be paying salaries of two party office employees, its rentals and utilities.

Despite, signaling conciliatory overtures, the Modubule-Mangole axis will also continue with regional tours, with a stop at Tobane this weekend.

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BAD WEEK FOR MANCHESTER CITY

6th February 2023

After falling to close the gap on Arsenal by losing to a record breaking goal by Kane at the Tottenham stadium.Manchester City now find themselves being charged by the Premier League with more than 100 breaches of its financial rules following a four-year investigation.

According to BBC , it has referred the club to an independent commission over alleged rule breaches between 2009 and 2018 , and also that Man-city has not been co-operating since the investigation which started in 2018 .

BBC further states that The commission can impose punishment including a fine , points deduction and expelling the club from the Premier league.

The alleged breaches include ,  breaching rules for requiring full details of manager remuneration,from 2009-2010, to 2012-2013 seasons when Roberto Mancini was in charge . Also player remuneration between 2010-2011 and 2015-2016.

The Premier league stated that City breached rules related to UEFA regulations , including Financial Fair Play , from 2013-2014 to 2017-2018 ,as well as Premier League rules on profitability and sustainability from 2014-2016 to 2017-2018

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South Korean Embassy aids students living with disabilities

6th February 2023

South Korean Ambassador in South Africa has donated e-learning equipment through Botswana Red Cross Society (BRCS) to Tlamelong Rehabilitation Centre in Tlokweng recently, in a bid to fine tune the student’s textile skills.  

When talking at the handing over ceremony, Chull-Joo Park, said they agreed with BRCS to give out e-learning equipment to better the training skills of students living with disabilities.

“With the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) equipment and job training skills, we will be able to help the students living with disabilities to do e-learning and to better their education and job training,” said Chull-Joo Park.

It was revealed that the South Korean Embassy approached BRCS with the intent to donate equipment and educational material that includes an embroidery machine, photo copier machine, tablets and interactive boards to be utilized by the trainees.

The industrial printer is a machine that works with embroidery machine to print designs for clothing and it will enable the learners to have more material available to them to facilitate learning.

Through this embroidery machine, students will be exposed to better technologies which ultimately improve the quality of materials they produce. It will also allow students to learn business skills and run profitable ventures.

Smart board gadgets will provide the students with an elevated learning process to be fostered by e-learning. The gadgets provide a more visual element to the learning process, which in turn improves learner mental retention.

Tlamelong Rehabilitation serves the marginalized and underserved less privileged persons living with disability in Botswana. The center offers boarding services, vocational training, social services, physiotherapy and rehabilitation services for young people living disabilities aged 18-35 from across the country over a period of two (2) years per cohort which has a maximum intake capacity of 35. BRCS through International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) have managed to create great working synergy with the South Korean Embassy in Pretoria based in South Africa to support or augment the National Society’s Rehabilitation Centre’s learning challenges.

For his part, BRSC Secretary General Kutlwano Mokokomani said they are delighted to convey their gratitude as BRSC to the South Korean Embassy for donation and they look forward to an enduring partnership for such worthy causes.

“South Korean Embassy’s great gesture will enable trainees to thrive, to fulfil their dreams to become a reality as this equipments will go a long way in creating great impact in the lives of trainees and their families. We wish to convey our sincere gratitude to the South Korean Embassy for their noble gesture of donating the E-learning equipments.”

BRCS offers rehabilitation services spread across three (3) areas in Botswana being Sefhare Stimulation center in Sefhare, Tshimologo stimulation center in Francistown and Tlamelong rehabilitation center in Tlokweng.

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DIS alleges plot to kill Masisi hatched in South Africa

6th February 2023

A dispute is brewing between Botswana and South Africa intelligence agencies over alleged mercenary training camps discovered in South Africa by the Directorate of Intelligence and Security (DIS). 

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