Leader of Opposition and Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) president, Duma Boko has threatened legal action if government fails to account for the fatal truck accident that claimed lives of seven Matsha College students on Friday.
Speaking during a highly charged and hugely attended UDC rally in Mogoditshane on Sunday, Boko told the gathering that answers would be demanded from government.
The rally was to welcome former Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) councillor for Mogoditshane Central, Michael Mathame who recently decamped to the UDC member party, the Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD).
Boko charged that should government fail to provide answers on why 126 children were transported in an open cattle truck resulting in an accident that left seven dead and hundreds with serious injuries, the opposition coalition would be left with no choice but to go to court.
“We demand answers for what happened. They should start giving answers right away. They don’t want to provoke me, because if they do, they will test my wrath. I will be forced to put on my gown and they won’t like it,” he said. Boko said government, as the ultimate guardian of the children, should provide for them and ensure their rights are protected.
“It pains me to see the rights of children abused like this. Lawyers should come together and fight this. We should hold these people accountable,” he said.
Boko also accused the ruling party of treating Batswana as foreigners in their own country, saying that has to change. He said those who are continuously acquiring the country's resources by corrupt means would not be spared “when the UDC takes power in 2019”.
“We will imprison them so that they also taste how it is to be locked in ‘filthy’ prison cells for days sleeping next to a toilet that is flushed from outside,” he said.
After being welcomed to the party, Mathame accused the ruling party of promoting tribalism. He said he could not be with a party that promotes divisions and tribalism among its people.
Mathame said he had a troubled relationship with party leaders in the constituency and had been suspended three months before elections.
“I beat them in 2009 with a BCP ticket after they suspended me for three months before elections in 2009. After that they begged me to return to the party and I re-joined them in 2011,” he said.
In the UDC, Mathame said he has found a new forever political home.
The councillor, who was welcomed along with 32 other new members from the ruling BDP was described by Mogoditshane Member of Parliament Sedirwa Kgoroba as a legend of Mogoditshane politics.
“He has worked with my late father George Kgoroba. Before my father died, he said to me, ‘I can see you are interested in joining politics, but there is only one man who has been my pillar over the years and that man 'Kwena ya metsing’ as we affectionately call Mathame in Mogoditshane,” he said.