Dr Dow, Kablay to face-off on May 24th

Bame Piet
Dr. Unity Dow(L), Liakat Kablay(R)

With less than three weeks left before her disciplinary hearing set for May 24th and 25th, Specially Elected MP and former Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Unity Dow is said to be calling among others the Speaker of the National Assembly Phandu Skelemani, and Vice President Slumber Tsogwane as her witnesses.

In total it is said that she has approached between 15 and 20 people to be her witnesses among them Cabinet Ministers Philda Kereng, Lefoko Moagi and Beauty Manake and several MPs who attended the General Assembly on March 14th.

The disciplinary hearings emanate from Dr Dow’s refusal to replace Kgosi Mosadi Seboko at the Pan African Parliament (PAP) after Parliament removed her before the end of her term as member of the continental House.

The General Assembly MPs were erroneously informed that Kgosi Mosadi had resigned from Pan African Parliament but it later emerged that she had not resigned.

Dow is also accused of contradicting President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi on her articulation of what the role of the Attorney General is in a democracy after the Bamalete land case which Kgosi Seboko and her people won against government.

Opposition MPs, including Kereng and Moagi voted against the ruling BDP’s removal of Kgosi Mosadi.

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The Bamalete paramount chief became a member of the PAP after the 11th Parliament recognised the Ntlo ya Dikgosi as part of the National Assembly. She is serving her second term as member of PAP. One of the requirements of the PAP is for members to be non-Cabinet members in their respective countries.

The matter has put Dr Dow and BDP Parliamentary Chief Whip Liakat Kablay on a war path after Kablay laid a complaint against Dow, accusing her of putting the name of the party into disrepute by refusing to take instructions, and issuing a press statement that was not sanctioned by the party.

In her Defense Dow has argued that Kgosi Seboko’s removal was unlawful and goes against the PAP Protocols and that the Speaker misrepresented facts when he said Kgosi Seboko had resigned from PAP while the truth was that she did not. Kgosi Seboko has confirmed publicly that she never resigned from PAP.

The Voice is reliably informed that the National Assembly wrote to the PAP to explain Kgosi Seboko’s removal and that she was replaced by assistant minister Beauty Manake since there are no women backbenchers in the country, even though Ntlo ya Dikgosi has female members.

It is not clear at this point whether the hearing will be held in public or in camera but it will be at Tsholetsa House on the said dates.

Reached for comment, Dr Dow declined to discuss the matter with The Voice but confirmed the dates of her disciplinary hearing. “Yes I can confirm that the disciplinary hearing has been scheduled for May 24th and 25th. I cannot comment on your speculative questions, go and ask the people who told you those things,” she said.

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If found guilty, the MP is likely to be suspended or be expelled from the party. Asked again on what her Plan B would be in the event of a guilty verdict, she said; “Let’s wait and see, I refuse to prejudice the party process”.

The seven-member disciplinary sub-committee is headed by former MP Leach Tlhomelang, deputised by Yame Kebabonye. Other members are Lindewe Ntingana, Slumber Mokgosi, Doreen George, Lesedi Rankhudu, and Mothusi Sedimo.

BDP spokesperson Banks confirmed that the disciplinary committee has been in touch with Dr Dow but said he was not sure about the dates.

Meanwhile, PAP is scheduled to resume proceedings on May 15th but it is not clear whether the new delegation from Botswana will be admitted into the premises. Another member who was removed is Mephato Reatile.

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