FRANCISTOWN: Julius Malema is a dog that should be kept tightly on the leash, the chairman of the Botswana Democratic Party's (BDP) Francistown Region, Botho Ntirang, said over the weekend.
Ntirang, who was addressing a rally at the Tatitown freedom square on Saturday, said he was prepared to die in defence of Botswana against "prematurely-aged Malema".
"Malema is a loose canon," he said. "He insults everybody, including his own president, Jacob Zuma. No wonder he looks older than his age."
He appealed to the ANC "to keep its dog on the leash". Malema stirred controversy last week when he branded the ruling BDP a puppet government that was ever-bending to the whims of imperialists and a security threat to the African continent.
To solve the problem, Malema said his organisation would offer assistance to Botswana's opposition parties to effect regime change. A rebuke from the mother body, the African National Congress (ANC), attracted more vitriol from the maverick Malema.
The BDP regional leader said Botswana sacrificed a lot during the South African liberation struggle and that Malema had no licence disparaging
Speaking at the same rally, the president of the BDP Women's Wing, Angelina Sengalo, called upon her party's womenfolk to be proactive and effect change. She counselled the BDP faithful to inform themselves on party policies in order to practice issue-based politics that would attract more people to the party.
Sengalo called upon the BDP "to start preparing for the elections now as 2014 is not too far". Taking her cue from Ntirang, she boasted that because the BDP is a party of disciplined individuals, "there are no Malemas in it".
She appealed to her audience to support government efforts to classify teaching as an essential service. "Striking by teachers should not be allowed (because) the children suffer," she said.
Commenting on the on-going debate regarding floor-crossing, Sengalo said the practice did not aid democracy which believes in the power of the voter.