Three royals in the house

Lotlamoreng II at a UDC event recently
Lotlamoreng II at a UDC event recently

The triumph of Barolong royalty Kgosi Lotlamoreng II in the Goodhope/-Mabule constituency by-elections over the weekend has taken the number of Dikgosi in Parliament to three.

Kgosi Lotlamoreng now joins fellow Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) MP and Batawana Kgosi Tawana II and President Ian Khama, the Bangwato royal and leader of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) in the National Assembly. Lotlamoreng becomes the first royalty in a while from the southern part of Botswana to enter politics, since the respected Bangwaketse chief, the late Bathoen II successfully did so, also on the opposition Botswana National Front (BNF), of the UDC coalition. Kgosi Bathoen was the first Kgosi to enter political fray in the 1960s after the founding President Sir Seretse Khama.

Bathoen II’s association with the opposition BNF politics where he was the leader would entrench the party in the hearts of Bangwaketse, Bathoen’s people, up to this day, as Kanye the Bangwaketse capital is regarded the opposition BNF stronghold. He also recruited another royal, the late Kgosi Diratsame Mosielele of Bakgatla-baga-Manaana to abdicate his chieftaincy for the BNF. Kgosi Mosielele was however not successful in his bid to represent Thamaga in Parliament in the 1970s, but became instrumental in ensuring the party’s presence in the southern part of Botswana.

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