Mbulawa eyes Maun East
Botswana Democratic Party’s (BDP) North West region has begun discussing campaign strategies for the 2024 general elections.
The regional chairperson; Reaboka Mbulawa and treasurer; Tebogo Boalotswe, are likely to face former Member of Parliament, Kosta Markus in Maun East primary elections, The Voice has been informed.
Although the three have declined to confirm their interest in the parliamentary race, neither have they denied it.
“I don’t wish to discuss politics right now. Kindly note that campaign season has not been opened yet, so I will not respond to any question relating to politics for now,” explained Markus.
BDP lost all the four constituencies to UDC including Ngami, Okavango, Maun East, and Maun West.
However rumours that Mbulawa wants to switch from Maun West to Maun East following a humiliating defeat by a new contender in the constituency, Dumelang Saleshando in 2019 has sown a spirit of discord among some of the democrats in Maun East with Mbulawa viewed as an opportunist.
Responding to Okavango Voice, Mbulawa explained that, “Indeed elders in the community including village Development committee members, tribal leaders and councillors have requested me to represent the party in Maun East, but I am still thinking about it, I have not made any decision.”
Mbulawa added that the reasons advanced by those persuading him to move to Maun East are the fact that his primary residence, Safari camps, offices, and other businesses are located within Maun East constituencies.
One of the Village Development Committee members who confirmed the expected move said, “We have long wanted him to move to Maun East. This is because he has invested a lot in Maun West but come election time, they reject him through the ballot so we said to him, come to Maun East because we also want to benefit from you.”
The elderly man who sits in New Disana VDC preferred anonymity because “campaigns have not to be opened yet so we do not want to offend party procedures by revealing too much of what is happening on the ground. But what I want to tell you is that there is a phase after elections where democrats sit down and audit constituencies and that is what we are doing at the moment, we are weighing our options.”
Confirming the man’s allegation is Tebogo Boalotswe who has confirmed that he also has been approached to contest Maun East.
“I know that many people have approached Mbulawa. I have also been approached but the decision of who people want is not up to Boalotswe, Mbulawa, or Markus, it is up to the branch committee to decide. However I cannot be drawn into discussing the Maun East candidacy at the moment, it is too early and my focus right now is the central committee because I want to be elected as an additional member, that is where my focus is at the moment,” Boalotswe explained.
Both Mbulawa and Boalotswe are campaigning for BDP’s executive positions, with Boalotswe campaigning for additional members of the central committee while Mbulawa wants to be the committee’s Deputy Secretary-General.
BDP goes for its central committee congress in July.