Connect with us

Boko to meet Malema, Chamisa, Hichilema

Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) President Duma Boko will meet various opposition leaders in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) in August this year to exchange notes in strengthening opposition bloc in the region

Reports say SADC opposition leaders unanimously agree that there is need for solid opposition solidarity platform to hold governing parties to account and need for a regional opposition party platform to strengthen dwindling democracy.

Southern Africa has long been considered the most stable and peaceful region on the continent, political developments in eSwatini, Zimbabwe and the ongoing insurgency in Mozambique somehow shows that there is need to keep the ruling government on their toes.

This has forced the opposition leaders to sense the need for solid opposition solidarity to hold governing parties to account. It is said, there is a potential need for a regional opposition party platform to support democratic political parties, promote a peaceful interaction between parties and strengthen the democratic political and legal environment.

According to researcher and political analyst at the University of Johannesburgs Department of Politics and International Relations Tinashe Sithole, this platform can amplify the voices of citizens, who are often ignored and oppressed in their countries. I argue that this is the alternative that the region needs to stand up for constitutional rule. Citizens distrust institutions such as the SADC, which has rubber-stamped controversial elections that have contributed to the current problems faced by the region.

Opposition parties play an essential role in strengthening democracy, significantly when the government does not restrict the role of the opposition party. At the same time, where the political agora is closed, solidarity can be the all-important factor in the internationalization of issues.

Boko, has joined the platform and is set to meet other leaders in preparation for 2024 elections. His first stop is anticipated in Zambia, where he is set to exchange notes with the current President who is also leader of United Party for National Development (UPND) Hakainde Hichilema. Hichilema won the elections in August last year after attempting five times amid rigging claims.

Boko is expected to touch base with the President to learn how he overcame the usually not so free and fair elections and is likely to rope in the consultants who assisted Hichilema last year. The expectation is in August this year he should tour the SADC region. He will meet Hichilema to exchange notes on how he guarded against rigging which is synonymous with African elections. In fact, Boko is in talks with the consultants in preparation for 2024 elections because surely the past elections were not fair, a UDC insider has disclosed to this publication.

UDC Vice President Dumelang Saleshando is said to have been the first man to touch base with the consultants when he accompanied President Mokgweetsi Masisi to Hichilemas inauguration and shared the contacts with Boko. The discussion has been that, UDC raises P2million to pay for the services come 2024. However with the current developments within the UDC, it remains to be seen whether the two leaders will raise the funds together for the party.

After the Zambian trip, Boko will visit South Africa where he is set to touch base with Economic Freedom Fighter (EFF) leader Julius Malema and Democratic Alliance (DA) John Steenhuisen.
It is at the meeting that he will share the current political landscape in Botswana with the two leaders in a bid to strengthen and put pressure on the ruling parties.

We should have a common understanding with these parties, we should see them condemning and commenting on some injustices that happens locally, that way, the voice of opposition in the region would be instrumental and that is when we expect SADC and other organizations to act whenever we call them for intervention, UDC source shared.

The UDC is on record saying the rule of law is almost nonexistent in this country, they point out to the ongoing fights between the DIS and DCEC, un-just detention and arrest of some aligned to the opposition and overall high economic inflation to the current regime. They believe, EFFs high pitched voice could be of great assistance.

The EFF has in the past held solidarity protests at the eSwatini border to indicate the opposition parties role in raising awareness about the Southern African Development Communitys (SADC) problems. Undoubtedly, the potential risk of conflict spilling over to other countries has grown, and the immigration situation in South Africa is one example according to the proponents of this idea.

In the past decade, SADC has been criticized for turning a blind eye to the state-sponsored violence in member states such as Zimbabwe, Mozambique, eSwatini, Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Among the other leaders that Boko will meet is Nelson Chamisa Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC). The outspoken leader has in the past called on SADC to intervene in the Zimbabwean elections.

In March this year, he was quoted saying, Let me talk about elections. You know that we have been having problems with Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC). ZEC has already proved that they are not capable of running the elections in this country. What do we need to do? I have already written to SADC. I am telling them enough is enough.

It is said Boko believes that with Zimbabwe going to Presidential elections next year, there is a lot that they can learn from Chamisa led party which they can use for their 2024 preparations. The two leaders are speaking the same languages against the ruling parties when it comes to election rigging.


Pep Stores donates sanitary towels to Popagano JSS

26th May 2023

The Guidance and Counseling unit at Popagano Junior Secondary School received a donation of 790 sanitary towels from Pep stores on Thursday.

When presenting the donation, Mareledi Thebeng, the Dinokaneng Area Manager, highlighted their belief in giving back to the community, as their existence depends on the communities they serve. Thebeng pointed out that research indicates one in four girls miss school every day due to the lack of basic necessities like sanitary towels. Therefore, as a company, they strive to assist in alleviating this situation. She expressed hope that this donation would help ensure uninterrupted learning for girls.

Upon receiving the donation on behalf of the students, Charity Sambire, the President of the Student Representative Council, expressed her gratitude. Sambire specifically thanked Pep Store for their generous gift, speaking on behalf of the students, especially the girl child.

She conveyed their sincere appreciation for Pep Store’s compassion and quoted the adage, “Blessed is the hand that gives.” Sambire expressed the students’ hope for Pep Stores’ prosperity, enabling them to continue supporting the students. As a gesture of gratitude, the students pledged to excel academically.

During her speech, Motlalepula Madome, the Senior Teacher in Guidance and Counseling, highlighted that many students at the school come from disadvantaged backgrounds where parents struggle to provide basic necessities. Consequently, some students miss school when they experience menstruation due to this lack.
Madome emphasized the significance of the donation in preventing the girl child from missing lessons and its potential to improve the school’s overall results. She expressed the school’s gratitude and expressed a desire for continued support from Pep Stores.

Popagano Junior Secondary School, situated in the Okavango District, holds the second position academically in the North West region. Despite its location, the school has been dedicated to achieving excellence since 2017

Continue Reading


Botswana misses out critical PAP committee meeting

23rd May 2023

The Pan African Parliament (PAP) committee on gender, family, youth and people with disability in its sitting considered, adopted and recommended to the plenary session the preliminary report on the framework for the model law on gender equality.

According to the last week’s media release from PAP which is sitting with its various committees until June 2nd,  the committee is following up the PAP initiative to draw up a model law on gender equality to enable national governments to harmonize, modernize and standardize their legislations to address local needs is set to be discussed in Plenary.

However, what is concerning is the fact that Botswana which is a member state missed the deliberations. Kgosi Mosadi Seboko who sat in the committee representing Botswana has since been ejected by parliament and this is a huge blow for a nation that is still battling equity and gender balance.

“Although PAP has no legislative powers it makes model laws for member states to adopt. PAP also develops protocols to be ratified by countries. The input of countries at Committee state is extremely critical. It now means the voice of Botswana is missing the discussions leading up to development of protocols or model laws,” said one of Botswana’s representative at PAP Dr. Kesitegile Gobotswang who is attending the current session.

While Botswana is missing, the committee meeting took place on the sidelines of the Sixth PAP second ordinary Session being held under the African Union Theme of the Year for 2023, “The Year of AfCFTA: Accelerating the Implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area” in Midrand, South Africa and will run up to 2 June 2023. Chairperson of the Committee, Hon Mariam Dao-Gabala expressed satisfaction with preliminary processes undertaken so far towards the formulation of the Model Law,” a release from the PAP website reads.

“The law should be suitable to all countries whatever the predominant culture or religion is. The aim is to give an opportunity to women to participate in the economic, political and social development of the continent. Women are not well positioned and face a lot of obstacles. We are introducing the idea of equity in the Law because we cannot talk about equality without equity,” said Hon Mariam Dao-Gabala in the press statement.

The release has stated that among issues to be covered by the Model Law is the migratory movements of women. The Committee proffered that this has to be addressed at the continental level to ensure that migrant women enjoy all their rights and live with dignity in their destination country. The members of the Gender Committee undertook consultations to consolidate the contributions of the various stakeholders that will be the logical framework format for the Model Law.




Continue Reading


BDP MPs demand review of Ministers performance

22nd May 2023

Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) backbenchers were left frustrated when State Minister Kabo Morwaeng failed to furnish them with reports from various ministries at a party retreat held last month.

The two-day retreat of BDP MPs at Notwane Farms was held to discuss the implementation and progress of government projects in line with the party’s 2019 general elections manifesto, in order to assert themselves and press the President to take action against ineffective members of his cabinet. They believed that the laxity of these members could cost them the elections next year.

To accomplish this, the party had requested that each ministry submit their reports to the State Ministry, as it was the most senior ministry. These reports were expected to be assessed at the retreat to evaluate service delivery and the implementation of the party manifesto.

The ministries submitted their performance reports to the Ministry as agreed, but Masisi and the MPs did not have the opportunity to review them. This was the main agenda of the retreat, but when it commenced, and many were anticipating the reports, they were nowhere to be found.

“Minister Morwaeng told us (MPs) that he forgot to prepare them, and as a result, there was nothing to discuss. He said he would share those reports in our WhatsApp group. To us, that was an insult because it is a very serious matter, and we needed to discuss it and see which ministry is failing and how it can be assisted to ensure that service delivery is met,” revealed one MP to WeekendPost.

Reliable sources have informed this publication that one of the reasons why the reports were not shared is due to the poor performance of the State Ministry. It is said that the Minister decided not to share the reports because it would portray him as incompetent, especially since President Masisi was present and seeking suggestions from MPs.

It is understood that the Ministry of Lands and Water Affairs, as well as the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, performed well, while the Ministry of Health and the State Ministry performed poorly.

The MPs are primarily concerned about the lack of correlation between the ministries’ recurrent and development budgets.

“You would notice that in some cases, a ministry would spend their recurrent budget accordingly, but when you look at their development expenditure, it is at 15 percent. That’s the money that should ensure that people receive services and amenities, and we wanted to advise ministers to communicate with bureaucrats to address this,” added the MP.

Without the reports, and with the expected agenda now in tatters, it is said that President Masisi asked MPs to come up with suggestions on how to win public confidence to secure victory in the next elections. It was at this point that backbenchers asked President Mokgweetsi Masisi to crack the whip on ineffectual ministers who had failed to fulfill their mandates. MPs expressed their concerns to the President, particularly regarding the state of affairs at the hospitals.

“There is a serious shortage of medicines and personnel in our areas, especially in rural areas. We have been complaining about this situation for some time, but there seems to be no change,” one MP told WeekendPost.

“The state of our roads and infrastructure is in disrepair. What irks us the most is that we have been complaining about these things for some time, but there has been no change. We demand progress.”

The issue of poor delivery and the significant deficit in the ruling party’s election promises is so severe that President Masisi had his ministers sign performance agreements and annual performance plans. The President effectively read them the riot act, informing them that they would be fired if they continued to fall short in delivering on their mandates.

He told journalists at a press conference that he recently had a serious engagement with Minister of Health Minister Dr. Edwin Dikoloti and Assistant Minister of Health Sethomo Lelatisitswe regarding the deplorable state of affairs at public health facilities.










Continue Reading