Expelled Five say there is nothing wrong in accepting UDC assignments
The Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) has lost no time in deploying all five Members of Parliament (MPs) who were recently expelled from the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) in the coalition’s campaign to win the Moselewapula bye-election in Francistown West.
This was revealed by UDC president Duma Boko when he launched the candidate for the coalition, Gift Tebo, last Sunday. Boko characterised the deployment of the expelled five as a deliberate move for the electorate to get first-hand information about their expulsion.
Praised for their courage
He said the MPs had shown their bravery by standing for what they believe in and should therefore be granted an opportunity to tell the electorate what the UDC stands for.
“We will deploy the expelled MPs to close the campaign for Moselewapula,” the UDC leader said. “We want them to come and address the electorate about what UDC is all about and what led to their expulsion. They have shown their courage by standing for what they believe in.”
Aim is to discredit the BCP
Sources close to the development say this is a strategic move to discredit the BCP and its decision to expel the five. “The UDC wants the MPs to prove a point to the electorate that it is the only alternative opposition movement,” said one source. “Anyone who breaks away from it should therefore be declared an enemy of progress.”
“The UDC seems to believe that the appearance of the MPs will work in their favour in the Moselewapula bye-election and put a final nail in the BCP coffin for withdrawing from it. This is because the electorate will have first-hand information from the MPs about what led to their expulsion.”
The MPs – David Tshere, Onneetse Ramogapi, Nevah Tshabang, Kenny Kapinga and Dithapelo Keorapetse – were recently expelled by the BCP after they were said to have defied the party.
Reached for comment, one of the expelled MPs, Ramogapi, said they will accept any assignment from the UDC because there is nothing that binds them to BCP.
“We are no longer BCP members because we have been expelled and I believe that we should move on unless prospects of reconciliation arise,” he said. “Other than that, we remain UDC MPs and should perform roles assigned to us.”