“We are patiently waiting for UDC weekend meeting outcome”
First female Speaker of the National Assembly, Margaret Nasha, commands respect in both Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) camps and to a large extent even across the political divide.
At the parallel BMD congress, which was held by the Ndaba Gaolathe faction in Bobonong recently, Nasha was co-opted into the Central Committee unopposed.
She only learnt of her cooption into the committee as an advisor when the Party’s Vice President, Wynter Mmolotsi announced that she was part of the five women who were made additional members recently.
Nasha has since graciously accepted that position.
In an interview with Voice Staffer, Daniel Chida recently, she explained that she prefers to marshal the forces from behind the scenes and also spoke extensively about the many problems bedeviling the movement.
Q. The public has been kept a bit in the dark on what is happening at the Ndaba Faction of the BMD, what is the latest?
We have asked for the intervention of the Umbrella for Democratic Change, not only intervention but with a suggestion of a re –run of the congress and the UDC being mandated to oversee that.
A meeting, which was supposed to be held by the UDC to discuss the fate the BMD failed to take place last week but we have been told that it will take place in Francistown this weekend.
We cannot keep on pointing fingers saying this was right and this was wrong. It is in the interest of the UDC that all members from the two factions should be under the umbrella.
Q. Will the weekend meeting be held with the presence of the Botswana Congress Party or not?
I am not part of the UDC committee but it is a pity that things have not moved according to plan. By now we should have moved in with the new constitution, which, includes the BCP.
I am new in this marriage but what I know is that the new constitution that includes BCP has not been put in place, so those who are interpreting and talking about BCP being in the Umbrella I don’t know exactly what they are talking about, I am not a lawyer though.
Q. What is the root cause of all this mess?
I am not here to allocate blame, some people talk louder, some are less talkative, some spew poison and some are peacemaking people but the bottom line is there’s a fight for positions.
Q. Is there still a chance of the two warring factions working together at all?
Maybe the ground has been now poisoned, there has been so much talk and a lot has been said that it is not conducive for peacemaking.
But if you have worked in conflict resolutions you would know that the worst scenarios do turn around at some point.
If the Pilane agrees to the solution that has been put on the table so far (holding another congress together) then it would not be a problem for the party to come back united as one.
But before that all members have to respect and accept the outcome of fresh elections.
We have to start afresh at the constituencies and avoid holding parallel congresses.
Q. Don’t you regret having left the BDP?
I don’t regret leaving BDP, we may be going through a rough patch but that does not in any way make the BDP a better party, they have many problems there too.
Q. Is there still chance for the UDC to win elections?
Although we are only left with hardly two years to go to the polls, which is not an ordinate time, we can still work hard and emerge united enough to topple BDP from government.
Even BDP is not resting easy just because we are going through a tough time.
They know what is at stake and they are aware that that once we have sorted out our problems and the dust has settled down, we will be unstoppable.
Q. Did you try to reconcile the two factions looking at the respect that they both accord you?
I had a meeting with the Pilane faction before the congress and that faction even went to meet with Duma Boko and Motlatsi Molapisi but they never came back as per our agreement.
I had spoken to Ndaba who was open to discussion about reconciliation but the Pilane faction disappeared.
Why do you seem to detest President Ian Khama so much?
I don’t hate him but I have a problem with a leader who does not listen and take advice and Khama comes across as that type of a person.
Q. Lastly were you the woman in the red dress and sneakers who was caught on camera in a blurred picture and circulated on social media, running away from dogs and stones in the Matshekge congress melee?
The picture blurred maybe to give the impression that that it was me, but it wasn’t.
I was dressed up as an official on that day and definitely not wearing sneakers and a red dress for that matter.
I was definitely not the woman in the picture.