BMD will not rejoin UDC – Mangole

  • Says the case challenging its expulsion will determine nothing
  • UDC says aim of court case is to disrupt coalition’s preps to unseat BDP


FRANCISTOWN: Expelled Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) contracting partner, the Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD), has no intention of rejoining or working with the opposition coalition even if they win the case in which it is challenging its expulsion.

The BMD was expelled by the UDC for alleged misconduct last year, leaving the coalition with only three contracting members, namely the Botswana National Front (BNF), the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) and the Botswana People’s Party (BPP).

But the BMD never accepted its expulsion, hence its resorting to court. However, while the court is yet to determine the matter, the leadership says there is no way it could work with or rejoin the UDC because the latter has only hatred for it. “As BMD leadership, we have reached the conclusion that no matter the outcome of the case, we will not work with the UDC,” said the party’s Secretary General, Gilbert Mangole, who similarly accused the media of treating his party with antipathy.

“Whether we win or lose, we cannot work with the UDC because of their hatred. There is no way we can work with people who hate us. Our primary goal to challenge our expulsion from the UDC is a matter of principle and to clear the name of our party. Due to the hatred that the entire UDC harbours for us, we have come to conclusion that the court case will no longer determine our working relations.”

The animosity between the two entities began when the BMD, particularly its leader Sydney Pilane, was accused by other contracting partners of the UDC of being a liability to the coalition. Concerning the BMD’s participation in the 2019 general elections, Mangole said his party had resolved to go solo in all of the 15 constituencies where it has parliamentary candidates. “As we speak our manifesto has been completed and only waiting is ready to be launched,” Mangole continued. “Initially our plan was to launch it together with our candidate for Gaborone North who is also our leader, Sid Pilane, but we have bethought ourselves on this approach. The question now is whether to launch it before or after the outcome of the case.”

Meanwhile, UDC spokesman Moeti Mohwasa says they were never in doubt of the BMD’s intentions of disrupting the coalition’s purpose of unseating the ruling party. “From the onset the purpose of taking the UDC to court was to disrupt our preparations for the elections,” Mohwasa asserts. “We have long known that.”