The Secretary General of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) Botsalo Ntuane said Monday that the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) Member of Parliament (MP) for Okavango, Bagalatia Arone has not officially joined the ruling party.
The Telegraph can however confirm that a few high ranking members of the BCP including party leader, Dumelang Saleshando and spokesperson Dithapelo Keorapetse have been made aware of the impending departure of Arone.
In the meantime, the Member of parliament for Barolong, Kgosi Lotlaamoreng has turned down BDP overtures for him to join them.
“It’s speculation all over social media that he joined the BDP,” said Ntuane adding that BDP is currently recruiting new members across all political parties. He did not want to specifically talk about whether Arone was one of those the BDP is recruiting.
A BCP insider said Arone had by Monday indicated to the party leadership that he was leaving.
Arone is said to be disillusioned with the high street lifestyle of some BCP leaders some of who are in business dealings with BDP stalwarts.
He is also supposed to have said he would not be recruiting other BCP members.
“He said it was all about himself. As we are speaking he is bidding his constituency farewell,” said a senior BCP member.
Another high profiled BCP leader also a friend to Arone confirmed to the The Telegraph that Arone had left.
The high profiled leader said in their conversation MP Arone never highlighted any reasons as to why he is planning to leave the BCP.
“I was talking to Arone yesterday (Sunday) and it is true that he has intentions to resign from the party this week. He did not give reasons why he was leaving and he never mentioned of joining any political party,” the profiled leader told this publication.
According to the profiled leader Arone is not retiring from politics but from the party only.
In August 2015 Arone was linked to Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC).
Before leaving the BCP, Arone had been an ardent proponent of opposition unity.
This publication was unable to reach Arone for comment as his phone rang unanswered for most part of Monday.
Arone entered Parliament for the first time as the youngest legislator in 2009. Talking to media at the time Arone dates his interest in politics back to his student days. As a history student in 1994 at Maun Senior Secondary School, Arone says he fell in love with the politics of the African National Congress (ANC) and the apartheid struggle that Black South Africans fought to the bitter end.
Debate is another tool he said triggered his passion for politics. At the time he recalled how they used to employ the British parliamentary (Westminster) style, in which a problem is put forth and debaters had to come up with resolutions. This exercise Arone said at the time that it groomed him to believe in himself and it boosted his confidence.
Arone met his political mentor (Kavindama) in Maun during his days as a student. Amongst what he learnt from the veteran politician was a need to build a relationship with all people regardless of age and social status. During his tertiary days at the Molepolole College of Education (MCE), he represented the College in a number of debate competitions in South Africa.
Meanwhile UDC MP for Goodhope-Mabule Kgosi Lotlaamoreng II is also linked to the BDP. He however rubbished the allegations saying he is a Member of the UDC.
“I do not know who might be fuelling those lies, I have no intention in joining any political party, I remain a member of the UDC,” he told this publication in an interview.
The Telegraph can confirm that with a succession storm brewing inside the BDP, there are concerted efforts among the various camps in that party to bolster themselves by recruiting from opposition ahead of internal contest.
The strategy also includes sowing seeds of confusion within the opposition ranks.