- BCP councillors voting BDP viewed as rebellion
- BDP happy with unsolicited votes
The just ended North West District Council (NWDC) political leadership elections have shown that the feud between the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) and the Botswana National Front (BNF) may continue to cost the coalition Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) elections to come.
The persisting conflict between the two parties especially at the executive level has reportedly reached the NWDC as it was blamed for the outcome of the elections held on Wednesday this week.
The UDC, which is the majority in the NWDC almost failed to retain the Deputy Chairmanship position because some BCP councilors reportedly did not want to vote BNF for the position.
About four councillors reportedly connived with the BDP and voted the ruling party’s candidate, Nico Folae. However, the BNF Councilor for Shashe Ward, Lekonne Masoko survived the plan to be ousted even though it was by a slight margin defeating Folae with 23 votes to 22. One vote got spoiled and it is strongly believed it was of a BCP councilor who somehow had a dilemma and rather opted to submit the ballot unwritten.
BDP’s Leader of Opposition Moetetsi Mogalakwe confirmed that the BCP councilors called them pledging to vote for their candidate because they did not want to vote a BNF Councilor for the position. Mogalakwe refuted reports that the BDP has used financial power and luxurious incentives such as accommodation to lure the said BCP councilors to vote their candidate.
“This thing we did not plan it at all, we just saw the BCP members calling us proposing to work with us on the issue and we could not reject people who wanted to give us votes,” Mogalakwe said applauding that it is a great achievement for the ruling party as from their side they did not have anyone of their member who voted opposition.
The divisions within the UDC, also cost the coalition the chairmanship of the Okavango Sub District. The party consequently also failed the Deputy Chairmanship as they did not field any candidate for the position still owing to the same infightings. The former Chairperson, Mpoke Karapo was toppled by BDP candidate, Lesedi Boy with 9 votes against 8.
NWDC Chairperson, Kebareeditse Ntsogotho said as UDC they are very disappointed that they lost the seats in Okavango despite the fact that they had high numbers against the ruling party as one of their councilors were absent. Ntsogotho revealed that the party will launch investigations on the issue.
“I cannot refute that there were divisions within the UDC because the evidence is that we lost Okavango even though numbers showed that we had the chance to win all the seats, we are the ones to blame for losing the seats,” Ntsogotho acknowledged.
The UDC managed to retain control of Maun Administrative Authority (MAA). Ntsogotho retained the NWDC chairmanship after defeating BDP’s Bareetsi Bogaisang with 28 votes to 18. As for MAA both Vepaune Moreti and Petrus Tjetjoo retained their chairmanship and deputy chairman positions respectively.