Mmegi Online :: BMD 'a figment of UDC leadership imagination'
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Last Updated
Wednesday 12 December 2018, 15:06 pm.
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BMD 'a figment of UDC leadership imagination'

The leadership of the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) has been forced to convince some of its members that the Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) does exist on the ground.
By Tsaone Basimanebotlhe Wed 28 Feb 2018, 13:51 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: BMD 'a figment of UDC leadership imagination'








This became evident after some members at a recent congress had delegates forcing the coalition leadership to discuss the issue of ward and constituencies allocation.

The congress rejected a proposal by the Botswana National Front (BNF) vice president, Prince Dibeela who had insisted that the National Executive Committee (NEC) had resolved the issue.

The members openly told their leaderships that BMD does not have members on the ground and is not easily sellable.

At some point, tempers flared when a BMD member from Serowe dismissed BNF, nearly getting a beating from angry BNF members who pulled the microphone from her for saying the party had failed to take on (the Botswana Democratic Party-led) government for more than 50 years. 

The irate members shouted her down saying that for those years she was busy helping Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) win the elections.

Even after congress ended at around eight in the morning of the Saturday launch, BNF members could not hide their anger at the way their president and UDC leader, Duma Boko had addressed them.

The members openly said if the issues they had raised was not resolved amicably they would ensure that they have independent candidates that they could vote for in those areas.

“President Duma Boko, you can only love someone who is there on the ground. We have a situation that BMD is now running around trying to recruit people to contest for it because they do not have members.  They need to accept that they do not have capable people.  Every time when there is congress, they organise people, especially youth promising them money to come to congresses. Will they afford to pay people even during general elections? It’s us who are feeling this burden because we are on the ground and we have to campaign for them if they are going to be given our constituencies. The truth needs to be told,” one councillor

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said.

Another member criticised the party leadership for failing to allow debate.

He said, “Batho ba ke morwalo ba a re imela, ga ba a tshwanela go ikimetsa dikgaolo gape.  I think the party leaderships wants to confuse people here, the issue is on the programme because the NEC has failed to resolve it.  Why was it in the programme when it was solved? Again the congress is the one supposed to give UDC leaderships guidance not leadership telling us what to do.  This is our party not the leadership’s party”.

At some point in the midst of the tension, members saw BMD secretary general, Gilbert Mangole addressing his frustrated lot that could not gain access into the congress hall because their names were not verified for the delegate list.

Ke kopa gore le itshoke bakaulengwe la itse gore BMD e kopane le dikgwetho thata. Le ne la senngwa maina mme la itshoka. Ka 2014 le gone le dirile bontle go taka ka dikgaolo tse dintsi le go gaisa tse dingwe. We do blame ourselves that we did not take certain correspondence seriously, especially the verification process.  We had thought we could do it when congress is still continuing because the weather was not favouring us.  But some members of the UDC from other constituencies are refusing to sign for some of our members,” Mangole said.

The congress has given less than three months to announce final congress resolutions.

The meeting also wanted a resolution reached about constituencies to be communicated urgently after UDC NEC meeting and the amendment of the constitution to be communicated. 

The commissions had agreed that UDC should have one vice president, UDC president to be given powers to expel, call special congress, and for congress to have powers to make recommendations that are final and binding.

This was after congress learnt that the old constitution does not give members powers to expel.

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