The National Strategy Team of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) will convene in Palapye this weekend to draw up a plan that will drive the party's campaign towards the 2019 general elections.
The team, which was recently appointed by President Mokgweetsi Masisi will reportedly formulate the party strategy around the President’s roadmap, which is anchored on economic development and job creation. BDP insiders have revealed that Masisi has given the team strict instructions to tweak the party strategy to reflect his new thinking.
“The President has presented his roadmap to the BDP and he expects the strategy team to formulate a working plan that will deliver on his objectives of creating as many jobs as possible before the 2019 general elections. The President is aware of the threat posed by the opposition coalition and he believes the only way to win the youth vote is by creating jobs,” a BDP insider said.
Masisi has also instructed the strategy team to come up with bold initiatives that will work in the short to medium term to address issues of unemployment, rural development, industrial diversification and entrepreneurship. He roped in academia and media professionals to bolster the new strategy team, which was appointed just a few days before the recent extra ordinary congress that was held in Gaborone.
Former BDP executive secretary Comma Serema is the chairperson of the team. His secretary is Alfred Busang, a civil engineer and environmental consultant. Thapelo Otlogetswe, a lexicographer and corpus linguist who was welcomed into the BDP just a few weeks ago is also a member of the strategy team.
Other members include BUIST lecturer Boikanyo Makubate, information technology lecturer Magdalene Tshambane as well as former assistant minister Kavis Kario. Media professionals have also been roped in to beef up the strategy team; these are graphic designer and youth leader Bose Sethupa and marketing communications expert Thabo Majola.
“Masisi has broken the BDP tradition of depending on long serving politicians to drive the party strategy. He wants academia and researchers to come up with strategies that are backed by empirical evidence. It is clear that going forward decisions will be made in the boardroom and not at the freedom square,” the source said.
Masisi has reportedly instructed the strategy team to come up with a sound roadmap that will deliver victory for the BDP in the 2019 general elections.
“Masisi is desperate for a strategy that is sellable while delivering jobs and boosting the economy. He is convinced that such a strategy cannot be delivered within the framework of conventional administration; hence the roping in of academia and media professionals,” the source added.
Contacted for a comment, Serema said his committee was going on a retreat.
“We are going on a retreat as a new committee to start our work. Whatever we will discuss there will be passed to the party secretary general and then the central committee for further discussions,” he said. Serema would not go into items on the agenda.