BDP yet to act on Ntuane’s radical reforms

Nicholas Mokwena - BG reporter
Monday, 08 August 2016
BDP yet to act on Ntuane’s radical reforms

Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) is yet to finalise and decide on the reforms that were introduced by party Secretary General, Botsalo Ntuane.

Ntuane introduced the reforms during his campaign for the office in 2015 which he termed BDP Reform Agenda Conversation; 22 Discussion Points’. Ntuane has been criticised within the party for failing to ensure that the reforms see the light of the day. He has however indicated that the reforms are not his but belong to democrats. No decision has been taken ever since the reforms were introduced.

This week Ntuane revealed that the reforms were part of the agenda during the party’s special congress held in Mogoditshane recently. He said the reforms are a work in progress and there is engagement between the party leadership and experts who have been roped in to interrogate the reforms. In the reforms, the former Gaborone Bonnington South MP cautioned the party to understand that it would not rule forever but in his view, BDP can still retain office for two more terms (10 years) either on its own or in a coalition.

“Should our tenure in power come to an end without having introduced key electoral reforms such as Proportional Representation and party funding, we will go the way of the dodo because the new rules will have no incentive to oblige us on,” he said. He called for a strong activist Central Committee and this means recalibrating their relations with government and reclaiming the party authority over government.

Responding to a question about progress on the reforms, Ntuane stated that when party leader President Ian Khama briefed the congress he indicated that they are still working on the reforms. “We are working with experts in different fields to advise accordingly. They would then produce a document that would be brought to the central committee for interrogation. There is a lot going on internally in this exercise. There has been an engagement between the experts and President Khama and different party committees where robust debates are undertaken on the reforms”, revealed Ntuane who added that once the process is concluded the outcome would be shared with the party membership.

In the reforms Ntuane reiterated the need for the enactment of the law on declaration of assets and liabilities. This he said would demonstrate the BDP’s commitment to good governance and zero tolerance for corruption and abuse of public office. Ntuane said the BDP had suffered a political backlash due to unfinished mega projects but no action was taken. He called for an activist Central Committee which must demand accountability and for heads to roll when wasteful expenditure occurs.

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