It is end of the road for coalition movement Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) as key players Botswana National Front (BNF) and Botswana Congress Party (BCP) have resolved to pull out of the marriage of convenience. Botswana Guardian understands that a bilateral meeting between BCP and BNF Central Committees in Gaborone has agreed that the time is now for them to leave UDC. Bilateral meetings are allowed among contracting partners. The last week meeting was attended by all members of the two central committees except for BNF President Advocate Duma Boko who was not in the country.
Advocate Boko has been accused by his central committee members of always avoiding meetings where critical issues pertaining to UDC are expected to be discussed. Those who attended the meeting have revealed that an agreement was reached to bolt out of the UDC and leave Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) and Botswana People’s Party (BPP). It is alleged that there are talks among the BCP and BNF members to find a model of working together going forward without BMD. Others are said to be calling for a coalition by the two parties while others want Alliance for Progressives - a BMD breakaway to be roped in.
Information gathered by this publication suggest that a meeting that was scheduled for Tuesday this week to seal the deal had to be cancelled as BNF and UDC leader Advocate Boko was not available. He is said to have promised to avail himself in the next BNF meeting scheduled for end of this month. The UDC National Executive Committee (NEC) is also expected to meet on the 24th of this month.
The committee has never met since the February congress. The NEC was mandated to evaluate the congress and its resolutions and report back to its structures as soon as possible. The NEC has ever since the event failed to meet. Things fell apart at UDC following the split of BMD last year. Other contracting partners wanted some of the issues to be revisited especially the allocation of constituencies given the development that happened at BMD.
Some members especially from BNF and BCP wanted redistribution of constituencies arguing that BMD would not manage to deliver all its 14 constituencies because its numbers have been affected by the split and formation of Alliance for Progressives (AP). BNF Secretary General Moeti Mohwasa confirmed the meeting between BCP and BNF. Mohwasa said this is nothing new but a general principle that bilateral meetings could be held by contracting partners. He however said he would not share contents of the meeting with the media.
“We cannot share what was discussed at the meeting with the media. It is up to parties who held a bilateral meeting to decide if they want to share the information with the media or not. So at this point we cannot share that with the media. And whoever shared such information with you was out of order,” said Mohwasa who is also UDC Head of Communications. BCP Secretary General Kentse Rammidi could not be reached as his mobile phone was off.