NLAPHKHWANE: The acting president of Botswana People's Party (BPP), Motlatsi Molapisi, has lambasted his party for failing to fulfil its promises to Batswana.
Molapisi was speaking last Sunday here where the BPP held a leadership forum. He said it was disappointing that Botswana's oldest opposition party should be the smallest in terms of membership and electoral support.
He characterised this as a reflection of the incompetence of a party that did not know what it was doing. "Leaders do not know their duties in the BPP," Molapisi said. The leadership forum was an example of this incompetence because the party should be holding a delegates' conference instead," he added.
Nonetheless, Molapisi said the objectives of the forum were to map the way forward for BPP leaders and to make them more productive. "The BPP was formed for the purpose of uplifting the lives of Batswana," he said. "We still preach the same gospel today, but the question is, did we fulfil our promise?"
He noted that people were wallowing in poverty and homelessness because the BPP had failed to solve these problems by replacing the BDP in power. "While the mandate and manifesto of the BPP is the answer to unemployment and all the challenges of life, the BPP has failed to put its manifesto and mandate into practice because it has failed to topple the BDP," he said.
Molapisi charged that Batswana too were failing themselves "You need to drive for a change of government," he said. "You do not need politicians to do that for you. Group yourselves and preach against the BDP, then look for the right leaders to assist you to topple the BDP."
The BDP had also proved to be incompetent by failing to quell matters during the recent civil service strike, bringing the country to near collapse, Molapisi charged. He then rounded on the private media, accusing it of publishing untrue statements about the BPP over the last few weeks, especially when it did not mention the fact that the BPP was a part of opposition cooperation talks.
"This reflects us in a bad light," he said. "It creates the impression that the BPP is unwilling to become a part of opposition cooperation when we are actually in talks of unity."
The Secretary General of the BPP, Richard Gudu, said the party was "deeply worried" by this omission by the media. "Negotiations began when Whyte Marobela was still our leader," he noted.
"He banned our meetings with other opposition parties, preferring unity with the BDP. We fired him because he did not want opposition cooperation."
Gudu represented the BPP at the opposition cooperation that talks that resolved to form an umbrella party and to have a single presidential candidate henceforward.