With tension besieging Botswana National Front over running party affairs, the most notable aggrieved organ appears to be the Veteran Association, led by Patrick Kgoadi. The elderly apparently presented complaints dossier at the party’s National Conference held in Rakops last month. This week Botswana Guardian (BG) News Reporter Nicholas Mokwena chat with BNF Secretary General, Moeti Mohwasa(MM) on some of the key issues raised in the report.
BG:How true is that the BNF Veterans Association claims that they have presented a Report during the party’s conference in Rakops but it was never discussed?
MM:In terms of the constitution, all organs of the BNF fall under the office of the Secretary General. They are therefore expected to submit reports to the secretary general. It is these reports that inform the Secretary General’s Report to the Conference.
In the Secretary General’s Report there was a part that dealt with the Veterans Association which was based on their Report. The Association was included in the Commissions which discussed amongst others, the Secretary General’s Report.
This means that they had two opportunities to guide the resolutions that emerged from the conference through their Report to the Secretary General and by participating in the Commissions. The Organs or auxiliary bodies do not report directly to the Conference. This is so basic that I thought the Veterans would know.
BG: The veterans also claim they have been seeking audience with the BNF Central Committee through your office (Secretary General office) to no avail
MM: Yes, it is true. We could not meet them before the Conference though we had wanted to due to time constraints. They had however indicated the issues that they had wanted us to discuss, the issues we believe had an opportunity to ventilate at the Conference. It is common knowledge that the Conference is an upper structure from the Central Committee. We have written them a letter apologising for our failure to meet them.
In the same letter we have indicated that we are still open for a meeting, which procedurally will discuss new issues.
BG: In the report, apparently presented at the Conference, the veterans question your competency on grounds that the BNF President wrote letters to regions in May 2018 asking them to submit reports
MM: It seems the Veterans are very economical with the truth. Secondly, it is regrettable that they continue to raise internal party matters in the media. Unfortunately this leaves us with no option but to correct and contextualise these assertions.
First it is the Secretary General who issued the Conference notice. Subsequent to that on the 20th June the Secretary General wrote a letter to the structures communicating details regarding preparations for the Conference. Yes, the President also wrote to the structures and copied the Secretary General. But this was in between these correspondences.But then do you judge one’s competence on the basis of letters; who wrote what instead of who?
BG: Is the President empowered to carry out such a task? Could you please refer us to the appropriate Article in the BNF Constitution?
MM: I will reluctantly go into that. You should appreciate that the BNF President can take any interim decision pending convocation of any relevant body or organ. We can refer to article 19.3.1 to 19.3.3. What then follows is a question of interpretation.
BG: Is it true that the BNF Executive Committee is failing to meet?
MM: There is a laid down procedure for convening of such meetings. I am not accustomed to discussing such details with external forces.
BG: How often does the executive committee meet?
MM: As and when it is necessary
BG: When was the last meeting of the executive committee and that of the central committee?
MM: The central committee met yesterday, 13th August, 2018. It adjourned and is continuing with its sitting on the 14th August, 2018 (today).