Domkrag shaken

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The opposition stole two council wards from the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) in the weekend by-elections in Mmathethe in Ngwaketse and Tumasera Seleka in Tswapong South, while the BDP managed to cling to just one ward.

The BDP had won all the three wards being contested in the last general elections in 2009. They only retained the Pilikwe ward where they scored 531 against the Botswana Congress Party (BCP)'s 320 votes and the Botswana National Front's (BNF) 34. The Domkrag jack is on the verge of collapse in Tswapong South where the opposition, the BCP, over the weekend swept another seat to leave the constituency volatile ahead of the 2014 general elections, as both the ruling party and the BCP now have four council wards there.The BCP over the weekend celebrated a landslide victory as they registered 820 votes against BDP's 500 in the Tumasera/Seleka ward. In the last general election the BCP lost the same ward by 32 votes. Tswapong South has eight council wards, and now the BCP has 50 percent of those, being Sefhare, Moshopha, Mokobeng and Tumasera/Seleka. The BDP remains with Machaneng, Ramokgonami, Chadibe and Pilikwe.

In Mmathethe, the BNF knocked out the ruling party, as they took the ward by 460/380 margin from the BDP. The BNF victory in Mmathethe comes as a morale booster as they prepare to wrestle a parliamentary seat nearby in Ngwaketse West, next month.Commenting on their victory BCP vice president and also the parliamentary candidate for Tswapong South, Kesitegile Gobotswang, attributed the feat to the fact that his party channelled all its limited resources to the ward. "I think now it is clear that the ruling party beats us on resources, where the opposition is lacking; this by-election showed that with matching resources Domkgrag can be defeated even in its stronghold," Gobotswang said.Moeti Mohwasa of the BNF and the Umbrella For Democratic Change said Mmathethe ward was a strategic council ward to win ahead of the parliamentary by-election nearby in Letlhakeng West. "We decided to concentrate all our resources there, because we believed we could pull it, even though it was a BDP ward," Mohwasa said on Sunday. The by-election comes at a time when the nation is reeling from shocking junior secondary school results.

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