- Say since his defections there are no working relations
- Lesaso dismisses the allegations
- Claims to have cordial relations with all his councillors
FRANCISTOWN: Amidst his defection to the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) last year Member of Parliament (MP) for Shoshong constituency Aubrey Lesaso has reportedly cut his working relations with his councillors from the opposition side, The Botswana Gazette has established.
Lesaso who won the parliamentary seat in 2019 under the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) ticket, dumped the united opposition to join the ruling party. At the time he advanced lack of development in the constituency as the main reasons that fuelled his decision.
Since he jumped ship to the ruling party Lesaso is accused of cutting ties with opposition councillors. This publication is reliably informed that since he joined BDP his working relations with his councillors from opposition irreparably broke down leaving him with only two from his side. The constituency consists of seven council wards of which five are under UDC while BDP has only two.
According to this publication’s source the MP has shunned the councillors as he feels they betrayed him by remaining in opposition after they agreed to defect with him to the ruling party. “Since he defected to BDP the MP no longer works with us, nor engage us as he previously did. So since he has seemingly cut working relations with opposition councillors, we also have declared him non-existent because he no longer works with us as he used to. We cannot keep on following someone who is shunning us. We have a mandate to serve the people and protect UDC. So we will not force the MP to work with us while he has taken a deliberate decision to cut ties with us,” revealed one of the councillors.
Mmutlane/Bonwapitse Councillor Segolame Outlwile confirmed the alleged working relations breakdown noting that Lesaso started shunning them after his defection to BDP. Outlwile said although there is no animosity between them and the MP they are curious why he cut ties with them immediately after defecting. “Since he defected to BDP Lesaso abandoned us, there are no working relations, for the reasons we do not know. Even just to update us about new development he never does that,” Outlwile told The Botswana Gazette in an interview.
Outlwile however said that what baffles them the most is that despite not working with them he wants to take credit for local government development within the constituency.
Otse/Kodibeleng councillor Lebitso Merementsi also expressed displeasure on Lesaso’s working relations adding that ever since his defection they are not happy about his treatment. Merementsi said the MP never shares any information concerning the constituency with them, a development that has negatively affected the progress of the constituency development. “Although we once tried to reach him out there is no change and this is negatively affecting the development of the constituency. But I am delightful that we agreed to collaborate in all constituency development,” Merementsi added in an interview with this publication.
Lesaso dismissed the allegations when reached for comment adding that he has cordial working relations with all councillors in his constituency. Further dismissing the allegations Lesaso said that no one has ever raised complaints against him. “I always make sure that after parliament I hold kgotla meetings where all respective wards councillors are invited. I even created a WhatsApp group for easy communication,” Lesaso said in an interview.
However, he is suspicious that the complainants are frustrated that he managed to successfully request funds for the maintenance of Shoshong roads and storm water drainage following last year’s floods.