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Last Updated
Tuesday 03 August 2021, 12:07 pm.
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Delimitation Commission illegal - BCP

*Alleges clash of roles between Parliament, Delimitation Commission, JSC
*Says JSC is beholden to Khama
By OARABILE MOSIKARE
Staff Writer
(GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Delimitation Commission illegal - BCP








The Botswana Congress Party (BCP) says the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) is misled to think it executed its mandate in accordance with the Constitution of Botswana in appointing the Delimitation Commission. The secretary general of the BCP, Dr Kesitegile Gobotswang, last month wrote to the chairman of the JSC, Justice Dibotelo, about certain irregularities in appointing the Delimitation Commission.

In a response dated October 5, 2012 Justice Dibotelo stated: "I placed the matter before the Judicial Service Commission at its meeting of 5 October 2012 and wish to inform you as follows:"Firstly, the Judicial Service Commission is of the view that it has properly executed its mandate in accordance with the Constitution of Botswana in appointing the Delimitation Commission.

"Secondly, please note that the provisions applicable to the powers and duties of the Judicial Service Commission and the Delimitation Commission are clearly set out in the Constitution."Gobotswang disagrees and points to the role of Parliament with regard to delimitation. "Because Parliament was seized with the matter at the time, they could have allowed Parliament to conclude the matter," he argues.

"In other words, they could have allowed Parliament to set out the revised number of constituencies for 2014."
In the BCP's

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view, Botswana needs more than 10 additional constituencies. "We divided the 2011 population by a quarter of 30,000 and got between 67 and 69 constituencies for 2014," he says.

"Our argument is that the last quarter was 29,000 after the 2011 population census. But the Delimitation Commission has risen to 35,000 and our view is that there is no justification for that. They didn't even bother to explain to stakeholders."Gobotswang says there is a problem because Parliament must continue with the Delimitation Bill when it resumes next month.

"Yet the decision of the Delimitation Commission is that once they produce their report, their recommendations are final and cannot be challenged," he points out. "There is a serious problem of a clash between the role of Parliament, the Delimitation Commission and the JSC."

At any rate, says Gobotswang, the BCP has no confidence in the JSC because it consists of President Ian Khama's appointees. "Khama has publicly said because there is no money, there won't be any increase in the number of constituencies," he notes. "The independence of the JSC is questionable. Our legal advisors are going to study Justice Dibotelo's letter and then guide us on the way forward."

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