FRANCISTOWN: Sources say Tati-West Member of Parliament (MP) Biggie Butale is expected to officially defect from the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) on Friday and join a new party backed by former president Ian Khama.
Khama is also expected to officially to decamp from the ruling party at a meeting he has called in Serowe on Saturday. The name of the new party is yet to be confirmed. So far, 10 names have been proposed.
The ruling party recently slapped Butale with a six months suspension for ‘indiscipline’. Butale has called a meeting on Friday in his constituency and many observers believe that at the meeting he is expected to officially announce that he is joining the new party.
Insiders have disclosed that, Butale initially thought of contesting the elections as an independent candidate. But he moved away from the idea to contest after some of his supporters told him that he should either join the Alliance for Progressives (AP) or the new party, which is a brainchild of former president Khama.
His supporters reportedly told him that going it alone at the elections is not a viable idea.
Yesterday Butale would not be drawn into discussing much in relation to reports that he will at the Friday meeting officially make an announcement that he will be joining a new party.
“I will make an official announcement about my next political move after Friday meeting. Call me after the Friday meeting,” said Butale today.
Khama has decided to sponsor a new party after falling out with President Mokgweetsi Masisi. In addition, Masisi has decided to expel or suspend those seen to be sympathetic to Khama.
Butale lost the BDP primaries to Masisi’s blue-eyed boy, Simon Moabi. But he was later granted a rerun by the North East region committee he protested the election results. The BDP appeals board overturned the decision of the regional committee.
Before his suspension, Butale was in the process of challenging the decision of in court.