- BDP spokesman says the law must take its course
The Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) will not get involved in any way in ongoing legal proceedings between the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) and the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) where the UDC is seeking access for its electoral agents to the entire voter registration process before the 2024 general elections.
According to the official spokesman of the BDP, Kagelelo Kentse, the party will respect the rule of law and allow due process to unfold.
Speaking to The Botswana Gazette in an interview this week, Kentse emphasised the BDP’s respect for the constitutional rights of the UDC to approach the courts on any matter it deems fit to.
“We may wish voter registration had started but we must respect due process, especially as the ruling party,” he said
Last week, Justice Gaolapelwe Ketlogetswe of the Francistown High Court issued an order in favour the UDC and restrained the Chief Justice and the Acting Registrar of the High Court from appointing specific judges to preside over the case that is set to return to court today.
Conflict of interest
Before this order, on 31 October, the same court had granted an initial order allowing electoral agents of the UDC to participate in the voter registration process of the IEC.
In a subsequent development, the IEC filed an application on Tuesday for the recusal of Justice Ketlogetswe, alleging a conflict of interest because the judge is a former member of the Botswana National Front (BNF), which is a contracting partner of the coalition.
Justice Ketlogetswe had previously rejected an initial request by the IEC to recuse himself from the case.