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Defiant Reatile faces possible BDP boot

TSAONE BASIMANEBOTLHE
Defiant Reatile faces possible BDP boot
Member of Parliament (MP) for Jwaneng/Mabutsane, Mephato Reatile’s days within the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) are numbered as he faces expulsion or a possible five-year suspension, Mmegi has learnt.

Reatile has failed to honour one of the party procedures when he was requested to respond to offences levelled against him within 14 days.

Following that, insiders within the ruling party have told this publication that the BDP leadership will have no choice but to expel the rebellious MP from the party.

Another option, according to sources is that Reatile may be suspended from the party for five years, which is as good as expulsion for a sitting MP.

BDP communication chairperson, Kagelelo Kentse had complained to the party alleging that Reatile contravened certain clauses in the party constitution that dealt with the way a member was required to conduct himself/herself.

The MP is currently on suspension for various offences that he was alleged to have committed within the party by not abiding to general code of conduct of the ruling party.

Reatile, whose suspension has been extended till his matter is concluded, was set aside by President Mokgweetsi Masisi for 60 days.

This week in an interview, a defiant Reatile maintained that he has not committed any offence against the BDP and he did not understand why he should be called for a disciplinary hearing.

“Of course, I did not respond to the alleged allegation levelled against me because I do not understand the content of the letter. If I had committed an offence as said then I will have responded or if I was briefed of that caucus of resolution which took that decision I will then understand,” Reatile said.  However, Mmegi has learnt that the disciplinary committee will go ahead and make a decision even if Reatile does not honour its meting and reach a verdict on his absence.

“His case might go on this week but they will call him for a hearing even

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if he did not respond to the letter. Failure to attend a hearing will help them to make a final decision quickly, which will then be endorsed by the President Masisi. The committee might suspend him for five years or write a recommendation for dismissal if he fails even to honour a hearing,” the source said.

The source said Reatile’s action clearly showed that he wanted the BDP to expel him so that he could leave the party. BDP disciplinary committee chairperson, Leach Tlhomelang said their committee is like a court of law.

“We cannot predict what is going to happen. What I know is that if one faces an offence, then you are bound to come and defend yourself during trial and that is why both complainant and accused are supposed to do it in writing and also bring their witnesses,” Tlhomelang said.

“Our committee will look at both side of the story and make judgement after submissions”.  Reatile is alleged to have committed offences against the rules and regulations and the general code of conduct of the BDP by behaving in a manner calculated to bring the party name into disrepute contrary to general code of conduct number two.

Again, he is said to have behaved in a grossly disorderly and unruly manner that might put the party name into disrepute contrary to general code number five.

He is also accused of using Parliament or council positions and privileges to attack the party and or its government contrary to code number 14.  However, should he be expelled, Reatile has a number of available options for his next political home. The Botswana Patriotic Front and Botswana National Front have membership registration forms ready for him to fill and sign, sources has revealed.



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