Venson- Moitoi’s spouse ready to be ‘first gentleman’

  • Prince Moitoi unhappy with wife’s recall from cabinet
  • Admits that they met with Khama but cagey with details
  • I had to leave the opposition to support my wife


Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi’s spouse, Prince Moitoi whose wife is running for party and national presidency has said that he ready to be the First Gentleman of the country as he is adamant that his wife will emerge victorious at the upcoming Botswana Democratic Party congress.

The title, First Gentleman, although unusual in history is the male equivalent of the first lady. In an interview with this publication over the weekend, Mr Moitoi expressed confidence and hope in his wife’s presidential bid and said he was ready for any role if his wife emerges victorious.

“I am adamant that she will win, she has a proven track record that speaks for itself. I am ready for her victory and I know she will make a good president,” he said.

Mr Moitoi expressed disappointment with the president, Mokgweetsi Masisi for his decision to drop his wife from Cabinet following her expression of interest in the presidency, “we do not know the reasons why she was dropped but all I can say is that it was disappointing. I certainly was not happy about it and I know it did not sit well with her as well, but she is a strong lady and knows that her bid was always going to ruffle a few feathers,” he says.

The former opposition politician stated that in his opinion it would be unfair to crackdown on those who are seen to be sympathizing with their camp. “We have got no evidence that those who have been dropped or disadvantaged are being treated so on the basis of their allegiance to Mrs Moitoi and we cannot make such wild speculations. However, if that is the case it would be very unfortunate and dishonorable,” he charged.

Sources reveal, Mr Moitoi initially attempted to oppose his wife’s ambition but he refuses to confirm or deny with a demur: “What we discussed then is nothing compared to what we eventually agreed upon. There is always a setting for any case and that’s where we sieve, argue and debate and then there is the final stage where we agree or disagree. The answer to that is that we agreed, and I am fully behind her bid”.

Mr Moitoi who has sympathized with the opposition in recent times, following a fallout with the former president Ian Khama, after the Gomolemo Motswaledi suspension saga says he has decided to bury the hatchet and retrace his steps to the BDP to support his wife: “I was a member of the Botswana Movement For Democracy and later defected to Alliance for Progressives. I quit the BDP with my faction then as we did not agree with the decisions that were taken at the infamous Kanye congress. That is now behind us.”

He shares the story of sitting on opposing sides with his wife, “it was not easy been in the opposition with her at the ruling party. It had its own complications which I will not want to share now. That is why I had to rejoin the party for harmony in our political lives and family,” he says.

Having been a staunch Khama critic, Moitoi seems to be born again and now sings praises for Khama whom his erstwhile comrades from BMD labeled as a dictator of note. He laughs off the question on how he currently views Khama before giving a loaded but hollow answer: “It was not about Khama but his administration. I have never had a problem with Khama. I know he is a good man because I know him very well.”

On their journey and newly-found alliance with Khama, “it is true that he came to us and we sat around the table and discussed whatever we discussed. I however must emphasise that he came after Mrs Moitoi’s expression of interest in the presidency. All I can say is that he has pledged his support for Mrs Moitoi’s bid,” Moitoi reveals.

He rubbishes people making attempts to discredit his wife’s bid on account of Khama’s support by saying they welcome any type of support from anybody. “He supports us as a member of the BDP and we welcomed that.”

When reminded that Khama is the also the one who spoke highly of Masisi as the next president, Moitoi says he would not want to be dragged into the duo’s dispute. “We don’t know what went wrong and its none of our business.”