The case in which Botswana Congress Party (BCP) President Dumelang Saleshando and Secretary General Goretetse Kekgonegile are suing the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) over their suspension from the coalition has been postponed to the 4th August 2023.
The two were suspended from the (UDC) in June 2022 for reportedly tarnishing the name and image of the UDC and failing to apologise for doing so even after they were required to do by the UDC NEC. The three months’ suspension which later elapsed was then extended indefinitely with the UDC arguing that the extension was because the duo had challenged their suspensions in a court of law.
Saleshando and Kekgonegile had through their lawyers, Dingake Law partners challenged the suspension demanding for it to be declared unlawful, wrongful and invalid because they are not members of UDC. They also demanded an order directing Duma Boko and UDC to pay the costs of the application.
Appearing before Maun High Court Judge Godfrey Nthomiwa on Wednesday to present their heads of argument, UDC attorney Nelson Ramaotwana pleaded with court to postpone the matter to a later date arguing that they were furnished with heads of submissions late.
He argued that they were served a day before the court date, leaving them less time to prepare for the matter.
For his part Saleshando and Kekgonegile’s attorney Martin Dingake did not oppose the postponement of the matter, however he raised concern that his clients incurred costs to attend the matter hence the 1st respondent, being Duma Boko and the 2nd respondent being UDC should cover the costs.
Judge Nthomiwa who also agreed to the postponement ruled that given the heads as he had seen them, it is necessary for the matter to be given enough time.
In an interview, Saleshando indicated that he agrees that the respondents needed to be given ample time to prepare for the matter to avoid a situation where they then use that as a defence to say they did not have time to prepare.
Saleshando emphasised that their main aim of challenging the suspension was for the court to also have a look at Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC)’s constitution.
When asked if they will rejoin the coalition should they win the case Saleshando did not give much of a response but only said they will cross that bridge when they get there.