BOBONONG: Botswana Congress Party (BCP) president Dumelang Saleshando has solely blamed the Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) for troubles in the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC).
Officially opening the BCP conference here on Sunday, Saleshando also shed some light on the new UDC constitution that has been cited as the major source of differences among UDC partners.
"When we (BCP) started talks with the UDC our assumption was that we are negotiating with the UDC not individual parties. However, after completing negotiations, the BMD president [Sidney Pilane] later came in and said that he does not agree with certain aspects of agreements reached most notably the constitution. That is where the problems of the UDC started."
"Even when we went to the UDC February congress, Pilane and BMD members maintained that the congress was not a decision making congress while other parties maintained the contrary. At the congress, members accepted the revised UDC constitution and resolutions with the exception of BMD members. This delayed progress within the UDC until I reminded Boko (recently) that me and him are the ideal people to take decisions on behalf of the UDC. As key decision makers of the UDC on Friday Boko and I registered the revised UDC constitution," he said adding that the BCP is now a rightful member of the opposition coalition.
The revised UDC constitution should have been registered in May this year as per congress resolutions. It has not been registered until recently owing to
Saleshando said that the UDC cannot disband because of one person in what was calculated as another indirect jab at the BMD leader Pilane who has often been perceived to be causing problems in the UDC despite his constant denial.
In another jab, that appeared directed at Pilane, the BCP leader said: "Where you failed it is an opportunity to learn. I recently learnt that if I deal with a person sent to cause chaos in the UDC at times I become impatient and end up behaving like him instead of maintaining a normal or calm character. Let us learn from our failures. Behind every failure there is a silver lining," he said highlighting that he learnt from his recent mistakes.
A leaked conversation in a UDC NEC WhatsApp group recently showed Saleshando and Pilane engaging in feud that was peppered with very obscene language.
Before the conversation could heat up Saleshando had accused Pilane of provoking other members in the group. The registration of the new constitution is likely to cause a major rift within the UDC because the BMD has openly opposed its adoption. Saleshando even acknowledged that the UDC might experience turmoil going forward as a result of the registration of the new constitution.