Mmolotsi made my political career Majere

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FRANCISTOWN: For the better part of his life 26-year-old Gaone Majere never imagined that he would be associated with politics.

He never even considered a career as a politician but all that changed after a chance interaction with Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) Francistown South Member of Parliament Wynter Mmolotsi.

Majere remembers his interaction with Mmolotsi with graphic detail as if it happened yesterday. That was one afternoon early in 2008.

“During my interaction with Mmolotsi when he was campaigning for the BDP primary elections (before Mmolotsi left the party), I saw a man who was committed to helping people. His humility and the level of commitment he showed during campaigns was out of this world. He really changed the bad perception I had towards politics as a dirty game.

“I began to follow politics closely after our interaction,” the fresh faced politician told The Monitor this week.

In addition Majere, who was then unemployed, instantly joined Mmolotsi’s campaign team for the primaries. The team would later help the latter win the 2009 general elections after he won the BDP primaries. It is during that time that Majere learned how to prepare for an election.

Majere was elected Tshwaragano ward councillor in Francistown South at the 2014 General Elections beating a seasoned politician, Marea Gaolefufa, of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP).

In the process he entered history books becoming the youngest councillor ever in the city.

In the middle of 2008, months after meeting Mmolotsi a 20-year-old Majere was elected the BDP youth league leader in Francistown South.

He left the party along with Mmolotsi and others in 2010 to form the Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) where he would later (2011) be appointed the BMD youth wing leader in Francistown South until August 2013. 

He also says that he never wanted to contest the general elections last year.

“After senior secondary I did a certificate in tourism management and was planning to upgrade my qualifications or establish myself in the hospitality industry. The thought of contesting elections never crossed my mind,”

He says his plan was to contest the elections in 2019. “I felt in 2019 I would have saved enough money for campaigning. However, the branch committee approached me in December 2013 to contest as the party did not have a candidate in the ward,” he said. After much thought Majere said that he made a decision in January 2014 to contest the elections.

Despite financial challenges he says that he was convinced that he could pull a surprise at the elections.

“My instincts just told me that if I could put more focus on preaching what I can do to my constituents if voted, I could win the elections.

“I implemented what my instincts told me and it worked. I was also very popular among the constituents, something which I believe to some extent worked for me at the polls,” he said.

Despite working with his meagre resources the 26-year-old second born in a family of five said that his family was also very supportive especially his mother and father who contributed some financial resources though it was not enough.

He also observed that Mmolotsi’s good track record in the Francistown South also earned him votes. He explained that many people trusted the UDC in the constituency because of what Mmolotsi had done for them in and outside parliament.

Majere also served as Ward Development Committee secretary for the Ipopeng ward before the delimitation exercise, which paved way for Tshwaragano. He held the position from 2009 to 2013.

“The position coupled with other positions I have held at political level helped me understand the dynamics of leadership which will help me as a councillor,” he highlighted.

The second born in a family of five who left his job at Wingate Lodge in November last year to solely focus on his duties as a councillor said that his main ambition is to advocate for employment among the youth in the city since unemployment is rampant.

“I will however, be more vocal and advocate for the improvement of other things that affect my constituents, but we all know that unemployment among youth has reached a crisis level and need urgent attention,” he noted.

Majere said that he is glad that the youth are beginning to show interest in politics and in the last general elections some of them won convincingly. He however, stated that a lot ought to be done to encourage the youth to take part in politics.

“Most youth shy away from contesting general elections because they do not have the financial resources to campaign particularly against well-established elders who have plenty of money and resources.

 “I think the government or perhaps individual parties should find a way to financially support youth to take part in politics. It is really not easy to win without money,” he said.

Having made history by becoming the youngest councillor Majere believes that it can help inspire more youth to take part in active politics.

Editor's Comment
What about employees in private sector?

How can this be achieved when there already is little care about the working conditions of those within the private sector employ?For a long time, private sector employees have been neglected by their employers, not because they cannot do better to care for them, but because they take advantage of government's laxity when it comes to protecting and advocating for public sector employees, giving the cue to employers within the private sector...

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