BMD seeks to recruit Motsamai


The Botswana National Front (BNF) and Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) are at advanced stages of sealing the recruitment of two high profile unionists, Botswana Federation of Public Sector Unions (BOFEPUSU) president Johannes Tshukudu and former Botswana Public Employees Union (BOPEU) leader Andrew Motsamai respectively, highly placed sources revealed.

Tshukudu is expected to wrestle Mochudi West from incumbent Gilbert Mangole and his royal tribesman Mmusi Kgafela under a BNF ticket. A unionist giant, Tshukudu’s experience if all turns well for the BNF will be of great benefit to the party and his popularity and protracted stay in the workers struggle may, bring the constituency to the opposition umbrella.

The  Mochudi-born BTU veteran in an interview with this publication said he is still a public servant and governed by the Public Service Act. “I cannot be discussing politics while I am a civil servant,” he said and further added that he has not been approached by the BNF on the subject as widely believed.

The BOFEPUSU president is a well-known figure across the country and selling him as a candidate would be easier than most other candidates. He swayed the federation to the opposition ranks in the past and has been speaking the language of opposition politics over the years. Tshukudu has represented the Union and workers at various levels including internationally at the International Labour Organisation and Public Service Bargaining Council.

BMD pursues Motsamai

Interviewed by this publication Motsamai revealed that he cannot rule out the possibility of seeking political office but said he is still focused on several matters before him. “We meet with all party officials, but it is informal in most instances, so I cannot confirm or deny whether I will contest in the next elections or beyond. When the time comes I will consider that, but not now,” he said.

Motsamai who is a Mokgatla born in Oodi is earmarked to represent BMD in Mochudi East constituency which is currently under the latest entrant to Parliament, Bright Moagi Molebatsi who was sworn in as MP at the beginning of the third meeting of the fourth session of the 11th Parliament.

The former BOPEU leader was recently ousted from his position is not new to politics as he has fought several political and union battles. Motsamai rose to stardom upon assuming the leadership of BOPEU and led the union during a difficult period for BOFEPUSU and BOPEU. Motsamai oversaw the political wrangle between the two powerful unions and attempted to steer BOPEU away from party politics.

He is well known for his calm temper even in the midst of adversity. His experience with the workers may come in handy for the party.