Preparations for the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) primary elections are not yet over following claims of hacking a fortnight ago.
Mmegi has learnt that the voters’ roll is not yet ready, as some of the names were omitted when the voters’ roll was being compiled. Also, some of the membership cards are not ready despite the postponement of the primaries recently.
Even though the party has tried to encourage more democrats to participate by allowing those without membership cards and those with expired identity cards to vote, some eligible voters will not be able to vote, as their names do not appear in the new voters’ roll.
Some constituencies with issues include Mmadinare, Moshupa/Manyana, Chobe, Gaborone South, Kgalagadi North, Lobatse, Boteti, Mmathethe/Malopowabojang and Nata/Gweta. Candidates are crying foul calling on the party to add their omitted members.
“We are not even sure if the final voters’ roll will have some of the names that we had corrected or asked that some be on it since they were omitted. Our argument is that the branch committee is conflicted on these issues which make the matters worse,” a source said.
Another source complained that Political Education and Elections Committee (PEEC) members who are sent to constituencies to listen to complaints from the constituents are biased.
Despite the complaints, the BDP communications chairperson, Lesedi Dintwe said they had sent the voters’ rolls for the 40 constituencies four times for verification so that they could
“The reason why our office has engaged PEEC is because we wanted them to have a clear picture of the challenges that we encounter. We have gone through all the queries that some constituencies have raised and the names that some claim to have been omitted will be rectified on the final voters’ rolls. The reason why we had sent the voters’ rolls to the branches was for the branches to interrogate them. The voters’ rolls are now waiting to be signed by PEEC. Our members should understand that we are not going to give them the final copy of the voters’ rolls. It will only come with the election officers on the day of the election,” Dintwe said.
Dintwe said some of the problems they face are that some people have registered in different constituencies. For example, one name appears in Kanye and Lobatse, but the system will reject it in one of the constituency.
“The members should know that our system is Omang-based. There is no way you could register a person twice. Some bring incorrect Omang number, which the system does reject while in other instances Omang numbers do not reflect their names.”
He said their office would be open on Saturday to address any queries that elections officers could need clarity on.