BDP primaries to weed undesirables with debt, criminal record

Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) primary election candidates have only today remaining as the deadline to voluntarily withdraw from the highly contested race.
Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) primary election candidates have only today remaining as the deadline to voluntarily withdraw from the highly contested race.

Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) primary election candidates have only today remaining as the deadline to voluntarily withdraw from the highly contested race.

The ruling party has warned those with questionable track records they will be barred from contesting in the upcoming party primaries, also known as Bulela Ditswe, billed for June. The BDP issued a declaration through its chairperson Slumber Tsogwane, calling on aspiring primary election candidates to issue verifications that they do not have any debt and/or criminal record, or are not subject to any criminal investigation.

The party also highlighted that those aspiring for primaries should specify if there is any pending litigation or judgment of the court that may result in them not being able to satisfy the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) for nomination.

“Whether the applicant has any previous unfavourable criminal record held by law enforcement authorities. Whether the applicant is aware of any pending or potential litigation or a judgment of a court against them that may result in the applicant not being able to satisfy the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) requirement for nomination,” reads the letter. Last month, the ruling party released a vetted list of its candidates who it said were fit to contest in the party primaries, to book their candidacy for the 2024 General Election.


The list of those who have been vetted out included surprise names. The party maintained that an in-depth vetting process weeded out the undesirables found to be unfit to contest in the primaries under its banner without offering more details on the modalities of the exercise. According to party insiders, the announcement by Tsogwane is seen as a preliminary move to vet out members who have an unwanted record or previous convictions from contesting in the primaries.

Editor's Comment
Women in Politics caucus NGO, a welcome development

In the 2014 General Election, women who stood for parliamentary elections were a mere 17 out of a total of 192 aspirants, and sadly the number dropped to 11 out of 210 parliamentary aspirants in the 2019 General Election. Hopefully, registration of the Women in Politics Caucus will give women the necessary support to join politics. While things were slowly improving, women for a long time were at the receiving end as compared to their male...

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