Old guard BDP Wants You To Vote
There are 4 party poopers who will make part of Mokgweetsi Masisi’s candidate list going into the 2019 general elections. These are victors of the BDP’s past weekend Bulela Ditswe who by age and past election performance should ordinarily not make the cut because they probably don’t even have the kind of swag beaming out of Sisiboy.
American poet Mos Def once said “Although the revolution won’t be televised, in the land of milk and honey there is a date you have to sell it by, otherwise it just expires and spoils.”
Below, we profile them and explain why they will probably be unsellable in 2019 as they were not in 2014 or before. It is not clear why the BDP, in the face of what should be a very easy victory against a broken opposition, should field aging men and women, when it could have injected candidates with a balance of youth, experience and proven track record- and just plain appeal! That would have particularly worked in these opposition held constituencies where they are likely to be up against qualified, colourful opponents who appeal to the youth, a demography that was important in 2014 which will still matter in next year’s election.
In this constituency, the BDP has given you Gaotlhaetse Matlhabapiri who’s been an ambassador, Assistant Minister and Minister several times. He won his first ever election in 1979 and once also lost elections in Gaborone South when he went up against BNF’s ideological cult figure and former president the late Dr. Kenneth Koma. This gives you an idea of the man’s age; its not like he’s getting any younger!
GABORONE BONNINGTON NORTH
Here the BDP says you should vote BCP defector Annah Mokgethi. She joined politics in 1997; Was a member of the BNF; Represented the BCP for Kgalagadi in 1999 and has basically been losing elections ever since; Was defeated in BCP primaries in 2004 (Gabs South West) and lost to UDC’s Duma Boko in 2014 following which she joined the BDP. If she was not sellable under the opposition, what will make her sellable in the BDP in a constituency she lost by a margin of 5000?
This constituency was given to the celebrated government technocrat Eric Molale as he was unopposed. He has been viewed with suspicion ever since his controversial appointment as Specially Elected MP in 2015. Molale has a reputation as a bully within the government system and was heavily de-campaigned by unions who consider him the enemy of workers- when he represented the BDP following the resignation of UDC’s james Mathokgwane in 2015. He lost to Kgosi Lotlaamoreng. Molale is also of advanced age.
Here Reaboka Mbulawa is the BDP’s anointed candidate and is probably a dark horse in the list of these old horses. In 2014 he got 5335 votes against Kgosi Tawana Moremi who won 7271 votes for UDC. Back then, the BCP was not part of the UDC and scored 2359 votes. He stands a chance to win considering that the UDC could suffer the consequence of Tawana’s glibness; he has thrown yet another tantrum and quit the UDC saying it is run by thugs. Consider all that’s happening in the UDC currently, Tawana may end up being vindicated- to the benefit of Mbulawa.
Mephato Reatile: Joined the BDP in 2012 after defecting from the BNF. He was appointed Specially Elected MP in 2015 along with the now 31-year-old Bogolo Kenewendo; causing a stir in which the BDP was criticized for bringing him through the backdoor after he lost elections fair and square in 2014. Reatile often comes in for a lot of criticism for his credibility as it happens with serial defectors. He however is probably praying that the UDC fields Shawn Nthaile who he has described as a weak opponent
Modiri Jojo Lucas: In a rare feat, the BDP has deployed this youthful chap even though his place is still questionable due to contested Bulela Ditswe elections. Lucas however will be contesting against Alliance For Progressive’s Wynter Mmolotsi and probably a BCP of the UDC candidate, given the ongoing cloak and dagger attempts to arm twist the constituency from Pilane’s BMD. While this is a tough constituency, Lucas should place his bet on the opposition shooting itself in the foot in 2019.
WHAT PUNDITS THINK ABOUT THE WEEKEND’S BULELWA DITSWE
“If BDP needs change they need to introspect and look at the capability not face or name. So it is going to be easy for opposition to win back these constituencies because the same strategy that was used by BDP in the past will be used again,” Says University of Botswana (UB) Political Science Lecture Leonard Sesa who says the BDP needs fresh blood and ideas.
Another Pundit, Anthony Morima says there’s need for the BDP to empower the youth. “The people who are overlooked by the party ended up aggrieved the move that leads to factions. This also affect the country because the ideas are recycled.”