Dow coy on possible run for Kgatleng West constituency
by Edgar Tsimane
Former High Court Judge Unity Dow is keeping her cards close to the chest and does not want to reveal she has intentions at all of standing for the parliamentary seat in Kgatleng West.
The constituency is currently held by the Botswana Movement for Democracy - an offshoot of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP).
Dow would prefer the media to respect that she would only cross the bridge when she gets to it.
Dow was officially welcomed into the BDP on Friday at Rasesa Lodge along with two former Botswana National Front (BNF) activists minus what the party had claimed would be a few surprises.
The former High Court Judge revealed at the press conference when asked what inspired her to join politics and, in particular, the BDP.
“I have the constitutional right to associate and join a political organisation of my choice. I chose the BDP because I grew up in the BDP. The party nurtured me,” she told reporters.
Asked if she was positioning herself to stand as a parliamentary candidate for the area, Dow said the time was not ripe for her to make such intentions known, especially in a forum such as a press conference.
Asked if the achievements of the BDP led government in correcting the imbalances of gender equity were inspiring enough to make her want to join the party, Dow said while the BDP may have weaknesses, its achievements far outweigh its weaknesses.
She said as a new member of the party, while she may have her own personal views she would respect the voice of the collective.
“When there is a collective position taken by the party, every individual affiliated to the party must abide by the decision of the collective,” she said.
Asked what her views were regarding the seeming lack of political willingness from a party she is joining with a clear majority in parliament but unwilling to ratify, as the ruling party, the SADC protocol on gender, Dow first argued from a “societal values” perspective. She then said that Botswana does not sign protocols she cannot readily implement on her own soil like other countries do.
She likened Botswana’s apprehension to sign protocols at the drop of a hat only to fail to implement by way of domestication as similar to the American government’s position. “Botswana is like America in many ways. Of course I want the decision making positions to reflect the society as a whole,” she said.