- Says its target is the BDP
- Underlines its strategic relations with the UDC
FRANCISTOWN: The Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) has denied reports that it is angling for MPs of the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) for recruitment.
However, persisting reports say the party that splintered from the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) in 2018 say the BPF has its small hairs trained on MPs of the UDC whom it helped to win elections last year, as well as UDC candidates for whom it campaigned but did not win the elections. “The BPF believes that all it needs to do is use Khama and the job will be done,” said a source.
Former President Ian Khama is the patron of the BPF. Prior to the 2019 general elections, he launched several parliamentary candidates of the UDC, among them the MP for Sefhare/Ramokgonami Dr Kesitegile Gobotswang, the MP for Bobonong Taolo Lucas and the MP for the Okavango, Kenny Kapinga.
But the spokesperson of the BPF, Justice Motlhabani, has dismissed these allegations, saying his party would never recruit opposition MPs because it enjoys cordial working relations with them in Parliament. “As the BPF we do not target any MP of the UDC and have never tried to recruit them,” Motlhabani said in an interview. “What I can confirm is that our target is the BDP from which we expect two MPs to join us very soon.”
He added that a third MP of the BDP is yet to make a final decision about defecting to the BPF Gobotswang has also said the BPF cannot recruit from the UDC because the two parties had a strategic alliance for the last general elections. “Looking at the relationship we have with the BPF, I do not seem them even thinking of recruit-ing from the UDC,” he said in an interview.
On the contrary, he said he wants the relationship between the two parties clarified. “We like the BPF because it is evident that it is para-lyzing the BDP. So our relationship should come into the open going forward,” Gobotswang said.