- BDP pushes for consensus candidates but may hold early primaries
- CC is yet to officially deliberate on primaries
The ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) is reported to be looking into the possibility of avoiding heated and highly contested primaries ahead of the 2024 general elections. The BDP is understood to be pursuing members to agree to bypass primary elections and to instead agree by consensus on candidates to run in the national elections.
Avoid new factions emerging
What is being proposed will entail branches nominating a single candidate and submitting the name of the candidate to the party’s Central Committee. It is believed that this is meant to avoid emergence of new factions and the possibility of aggrieved members defecting to other parties.
Some ministers and sitting MPs are reported to be in support of this idea. However, BDP spokesman Kagelelo Banks Kentse says the party is yet to formally deliberate on the matter of primary elections.
“The Central Committee is yet to discuss anything regarding primary elections,” Kentse said in an interview. “For the BDP, the primary elections are an important exercise in which we pride ourselves. At this point, there is no date set for our primary elections. The CC will have to give direction on whether we hold the primaries a year early or just towards the general elections.”
“The idea behind holding the primaries early would be to allow time for the rehabilitation and healing process for candidates. As for consensus candidates, the party does not enforce it. Branches or constituencies are responsible for their selection.”
Morwaeng may be threatened
Meanwhile, some sitting MPs are reported to be facing challenges in their own constituencies. Kabo Morwaeng is said to be trying to fend off Jeffery Sibisibi from challenging him for the Molepolole South seat. Marshlow Motlogelwa is believed to be making inroads in Minister of Health & Wellness Dr. Edwin Dikoloti’s Mathethe-Molapowabojang constituency.
Tumiso Rakgare, Kagiso Mmusi and Mmusi Kgafela are among other ministers and MPs facing similar challenges in their constituencies.