Botswana National Front (BNF) has voiced apprehensions regarding the recent decision to postpone voter registration for the 2024 general elections.
In an official press release issued by the party’s Secretary General, Ketlhalefile Motshegwa, the BNF expresses its unease with the explanations provided for the delay, particularly citing concerns of transparency within the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC).
Motshegwa stated that there exists a prevailing suspicion that the postponement is motivated by the unpreparedness of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) for its own primary elections.
“This also points out that IEC is weak administratively, and therefore unprepared. This comes at a time when the IEC has lost credibility and integrity to run free, fair elections as they have turned themselves into a sub-committee of BDP or a department in the office of the President. Their mission is to preserve the continuation of the failing and corrupt BDP Government,” he said.
Motshegwa went on to assert that the BDP’s alleged manipulation of the 2019 general elections raises doubts about the fairness of the upcoming 2024 elections.
The statement suggests a pattern of subverting democratic processes and anticipates that similar tactics could be employed in the upcoming elections.
Motshegwa also detailed claims of irregularities, including the issuance of identification cards (omang) to nonexistent individuals (ghost voters). “It is common cause that BDP rigged 2019 general elections, and have put in place plans to rig 2024 generals inter alia as we are told through ghost voters issued of with omang , intelligence and security officers who will be given multiple omang cards , online registration which will be manipulated,” the statement reads in part.
Motshegwa’s assertions raise significant concerns about the integrity of the electoral process and the potential for public discontent to escalate if the population perceives the system and its institutions as anti-democratic.