The Botswana Peoples Party (BPP) Publicity Secretary Tshepo Makhani has told Northern Extra that his party was never allocated any four constituencies under the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) pact.
He said anything purporting that was devoid of truth and misleading party members.
However, the agreement made public following the launch of the new UDC, which includes Botswana Congress Party, clearly spelt out the number of constituencies for all contracting partners.Botswana National Front had the lion’s share at 22 followed by BCP at 17 and 14 for Botswana Movement for Democracy while BPP was allocated four (4) constituencies, these being Tati East, Tati West and two other constituencies in Serowe. Makhani however, dismisses such records as false and intended to confuse BPP members.
“We still maintain that BPP was never officially allocated any constituency as we are yet to be officially given those constituencies we are supposed to contest for in the 2019 general election. All this talk of BPP having been allocated four constituencies is simply rumours we hear from the grapevine.
“Our party president has long dismissed such talks as hogwash and baseless. When the party is officially allocated constituencies, we will duly inform our membership accordingly,” Makhani said.
Efforts to get a comment from UDC mouthpiece Moeti Mohwasa hit a snag at press time as his mobile phone rang unanswered. However, Dr Kesitegile Gobotswang who was the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) negotiating team leader was not prepared to discuss BPP issue in the media. “I don’t want to discuss the BPP issue currently as it is an internal issue which is going to be resolved internally by the UDC at the most appropriate time,” Gobotswang said.
A political commentator, Ndulamo Antony Morima said that the current stance by BPP clearly shows that the problems at UDC are far from over. Morima, said that the coalition should by now be preparing for the next general election instead of squabbling over constituency allocations.“Under such circumstances, there is a likelihood of vote splitting among the coalition partners if this is not addressed as a matter of urgency by the umbrella. If BPP is grumbling over constituencies, there is that likelihood for their members to sabotage any nominated UDC candidate in their area.
“Apart from vote splitting, there is also the likelihood of infightings during the primary elections of the UDC over constituency allocations which might not favour some,” Morima said. He said the action by BPP should not be taken lightly looking at the fact that its President Motlatsi Molapisi holds the chairmanship of the UDC.