BMD fate to be decided this weekend
Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) representatives from Kweneng, Central, Letswapo, Francistown, Gaborone, Tlokweng as well as the Bobonong, Mmadinare, Selebi-Phikwe (BOMASE) cluster, this week threw their weight behind the party’s expelled leaders.
The regional representatives said that they do not recognise the expulsions by the Chairman, Nehemiah Modubule and his committee.
They told a press briefing this week that the constitution gives them the right to run the congress.
“Pursuant to article 22.6 (i) which reads ‘The regional committee will supervise and direct the work of the movement and all its organs in the region” and section 22.6 (k) which states that “the regional committee will ensure that the branch and other structures of the movement in the region function democratically and effectively. To this end, the regional committee shall organize, establish and service branches in the region…,” pointed Dr Phenyo Butale as he quoted a clause from the party’s constitution on behalf of the regions representatives.
The determined representatives said that as regions represented at the conference, they take the strong view that the only delegates that are going to participate in the Bobonong congress are those authenticated by regional committees.
However this is something different from what the Modubule faction had earlier said.
Modubule had gone on record saying he and his committee were going to provide security at the congress since it is their responsibility as they are the ones running the affairs of the party.
In the light of the contrasting statements political observers generally believe that the BMD situation is a tug of war between the Ndaba/Mmolotsi faction’s reason of numbers and Mangole/Modubule’s number of reasons.
Political analyst Lesole Machacha points the blame at members who accepted money from Sidney Pilane.
“Pilane has spent a lot of money in the party and it will not be a surprise if he is to send people to nominate him as President. He has been funding the party from shadows and I blame those who are against him but accepted his money.”
Machacha says that failure by the party to resolve their problems internally and well on time means that there is a likelihood for the party to disband in Bobonong.
“It is too late to form a new party and such fights will give the Botswana Congress Party an edge over the BMD.”
He said that it is clear that someone somewhere is playing the cheque book politics. He added that educational background has also played a role in the party divisions.
“If you have too many academics in one room they are likely to disagree even on a vey light thing.”
Another University of Botswana academic and political analyst, Leonard Sesa, says what is happening now is a tug-of-war.
He said that some have the power while some have the numbers.
“The party was supposed to have called an emergency congress to deal with their issues before the main congress. I recommend that they invite a neutral and respected person to reconcile them,” he said and added that should the regions stick to what they said at the press conference, their stand will give the party direction.
Efforts to reach Modubule and Mangole failed as they did not answer their phones.
Meanwhile Party Treasurer, Percy Bakwena, confirmed the venue and said the Matshekge Senior Secondary school hall has been paid for.