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Masisi’s nightmare

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Disgruntled faction aim for control of the party

A powerful disgruntled lobby group within Botswana Democratic Party (BDP), is gunning for total control of the party, it has emerged.

If the group, made of backbenchers and primary election losers succeed in their plot to regroup in order to form an anti Masisi faction with the aim of taking control of the central committee.

President Masisi is likely to run a party that he cannot control after next year’s elective congress, in February or March.

On the alleged list is BDP 2019 campaign chairperson, Tebelelo Seretse, defeated former Minister of Transport of Communications, Dorcas Makgato, former MP for Palapye, Boyce Sebetela, former Assistant Minister of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development, Dikgang Makgalemele, former Mahalapye West MP, Bernard Bolele and former Minister of Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration, Nonofo Molefhi as well as BDP back benchers.

According to a reliable source, some of the MPs who were overlooked for cabinet posts are angry while losers are disappointed that they were not considered for Specially Elected Members of Parliament posts.

“The president offered some of them diplomatic positions but they have turned the offers down in favour of staying at home and taking control of party structures. “You have to be in touch with structures if you want to win elections,” said the source citing a list of former MPs who failed to make a comeback after diplomatic missions such as Jacob Nkate, who was Botswana’s ambassador to Japan, Duke Lefhoko in Namibia and Tebelelo Seretse who served in the United States.

“Never in the history of the BDP has an ambassador returned to win elections, people are marking their territories. Even Masisi, after losing BDP primary elections to Maitshoko Mooka in 2004, he turned down an offer to go to Ethiopia or United Nations,” added the source who went on to explain that if Masisi does not bring the disgruntled democrats to order he will have a lot to deal with next year.

“They are strong and they are likely to defeat all his preferred choices and you can imagine a president with a Central Committee that he did not endorse, they will make his job difficult. He cannot afford to fire them.”

FORMER SHOSHONG MP: Makgalemele

However Makgalemele dismissed the allegations as, “rubbish’ while junior minister, Lelatisitswe said, “Who mentioned my name? I don’t have interest in any position in the central committee whatsoever! That’s pure lies, I am a democrat and exist because of democratic dispensation and support my leadership. Remember I sit in Masisi’s cabinet. So that’s hogwash.”

Seretse too dismissed any involvement in the alleged plot.

BDP Secretary General, Mpho Balopi was not available for a comment at the time of going to press.

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Politics

The backbench is a blessing- Kablay

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I am not quitting anytime soon- Kablay

Member of Parliament for Letlhakeng/ Lephepe, Liakat Kablay is delighted to have retained his position as BDP Chief Whip.

Although there have been allegations that he was disgruntled after he was yet again overlooked for a ministerial position, Kablay has dismissed such allegations in an interview with The Voice Staffer, DANIEL CHIDA.

Congratulations on your nomination.

I am very delighted by the re- election to the role of Chief whip by President Mokgweetsi Masisi.

It shows that I did things right in the last parliament and I promise to keep working hard for the country and for our party.

I have been criticised before for speaking to the media and being open minded and I thought I was not going to make a comeback as Chief Whip.

The nomination has motivated me to whip the MPs even more so that they do what is right in parliament.

There have been allegations that you were upset that you didn’t make it into cabinet.

I know those allegations but I was never upset. I was just happy that I retained my seat as an MP.

I worked hard for that. I worked under former President Ian Khama for 10 years and he never considered me for a Ministerial position.

One thing that you have to know is that being overlooked for a ministerial position can be a blessing in disguise.

Majority of former Ministers lost elections because they focused more on their Ministerial jobs and forgot about their constituencies, so maybe it is a blessing in disguise that I was left out.

If the man who chooses cabinet does not see that I deserve to be included, then there is nothing much I can say except to help in building our party.

Is there a particular Ministry you had wished to lead?

Yes, I want to be a Minister for Local Government, it is close to my heart.

I come from an impoverished constituency and from that ministry I could effectively push for more developments in the area.

What has been your first assignment as Chief Whip?

I have been in meetings with the backbench discussing our issues and our expectations.

We don’t want a situation where we don’t have answers for poor or no service delivery by government

What do you mean?

We want a good working relationship with Cabinet because we are from the same party.

Ministers are not supposed to undermine us.

Have you been undermined before?

Yes in the past, Ministers brought motions to parliament without even consulting us and then expected us to keep quite as if we were in the know.

We were then labeled as rebels who wanted to oust some from their positions but we could not just agree for the sake of agreeing.

What was happening in the 11th parliament should not happen in this sitting.

I have spoken to the Vice President about our concerns as the backbench.

Ministers must brief their Permanent Secretaries about the BDP Manifesto so that they see that it is implemented.

People voted us into power because of our manifesto and we must walk the talk.

Are you prepared for the motion of no confidence on HE if tabled again?

That motion is dead! People lied saying the opposition was asking support from us the backbench because we are disgruntled for not making it into cabinet. That’s a big lie.

If we remove Masisi then it gives opposition a chance to take over government and that is something that we don’t want.

We have confidence in Masisi and MPs must know that some of us were voted because of him, people were voting for Masisi not us and therefore we can not turn our backs on him.

There is talk of motion on floor crossing, what is your take?

Opposition should not rely on us for their motion on floor crossing.

I told the BDP MPs that those who will connive with opposition should kiss BDP goodbye.

We are certain that no one from our side will cross.

What about BDP getting members from opposition?

Yes it is possible.

Are you referring to Pono Moathodi?

Of course, I can bet with you, we are getting him before the end of next year.

Why do you say that?

He is one of us, he likes Masisi very much and every time the President makes his way into the house, Moathodi’s face lights up with joy.

He smiles, cracks jokes and even consults him more than us.

When are you retiring from politics?

I haven’t considered quitting maybe I will contest for the last time in 2024.

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Politics

UDC court papers for download

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As the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) seeks to redeem itself by winning back seats which they believe should have been theirs at the just ended general elections, we have put together some of the court documents in which they believe will assist them in their court case.

The UDC has sought the relief of the High Court of Botswana, putting together 19 petition for both parliamentary and council seats. In the papers the UDC implicates the President of Botswana, dr. Mokgweetsi Masisi, Director General of the Directorate of Intelligence and Security Services (DISS) , Peter Magosi, BDP treasurer Satar Dada, BDP Secretary general and elected Member of Parliament for Gaborone North , Mpho Balopi, IEC officials, some BDP committee members .

The cases will be heard by a panel of 12 judges in total, in a case which is set to challenge the integrity of the IEC.

Nkaigwa Petition by The Voice Newspaper Botswana on Scribd

Boko Petition by The Voice Newspaper Botswana on Scribd

Ramaotwana Petition by The Voice Newspaper Botswana on Scribd

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Politics

Nata/Gweta

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MP Polson Majaga calls for immediate end to ‘tenderpreneur’ civil servants.

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