Wednesday, May 25, 2022

BCP all out to double membership within three years

The Botswana Congress Party (BCP) executive Committee has set out on a mission to increase its membership base to 200 000 by the year 2014.

The party leadership has divided itself into groups of two that will travel to different parts of Botswana where they will address both in-house meetings as well as rallies in a bid to convince the people to fill in their BCP membership forms.

“We want to double our membership by the next general election, that is why we have to engage on a mass mobilization program countrywide. We are visiting areas that were our strongholds during the 2009 election as well as those that were our weakest points,“ said party president, Dumelang Saleshando.

During the last election of 2009, the BCP’s membership base was at 97 000 while they received a confirmed 120 000 votes countrywide.

In an interview with the Sunday Standard, Saleshando said that after comparing their current registration with the votes received during the 2009 election, they found that there was a positive correlation between the two, a starting point, which they are trying to build on.
Saleshando, who will already be in Okavango today (Sunday), is accompanied by the BCP‘s Member of Parliament for Okavango, Aaron Bagalatia in his tour of the area.

To emphasize on the positive correlation, the Saleshando said that their strategy was devised after they learned that the places where they had high membership were their strongest areas during the elections while the places where membership was low were their weakest points. The party plans to review the progress of their strategy by March 2011.

“We are using very little resources from the party; most costs we expect to incur personally or through support from volunteering members of the party. Our treasurer just assumed office in July and is therefore busy brainstorming fund raising activities,” said Saleshando.

Party activists in different areas, he said, have volunteered to help the leaders with provision of transport, accommodation as well as food when they visit their respective areas.

In his rallies, Salashando aims to bring about the issues that drove their 2009 manifesto titled, “a nation at crossroads”, whereby he will be pointing out to Batswana that most of the things the party had at one point predicted will happen are now taking place.

He said that he planned to cite the split of the ruling party, the Botswana Democratic Party, into two as an example of one of the outcomes they predicted would happen.

“We have faith that the people will listen because we currently have a good party presence and we have been stable with our beliefs,” he said.

Early this year, the BCP formed a partnership with another opposition party, the Botswana Alliance Movement (BAM), which resulted in BAM members automatically becoming part of BCP, a name they both agreed should be retained.

For Saleshando, that means that their work is cut out for them because they will also have to convince BAM supporters who were not part of its membership to now sign under the merged BCP.

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