The Botswana National Front (BNF) president, Duma Boko, says his party is in no hurry to appoint a negotiating team to engage in talks with other opposition parties.
This comes in the wake of curiosity over who would represent the BNF at the cooperation talks after the opposition Botswana Congress Party (BCP) wrote to other opposition parties, seeking a meeting to kick start talks on possible cooperation.
In an interview with the Sunday Standard, Boko confirmed that his party “was not in a hurry” to appoint a team to represent the party at the talks because of a pending workshop scheduled for October 20th this year.
The workshop, expected to be held in Gaborone, would comprise experts from outside Botswana and some locals, according to the BNF leader.
Boko said the decision to hold a workshop before the talks was taken at a recent meeting of the party’s leadership.
“We shall be holding a workshop; it will be facilitated by experts and its purpose will be to broadly look at the issue of cooperation,” Boko revealed.
“After that when we believe our people are intellectually equipped we will then assemble a team to represent us at the cooperation talks,” he added.
Boko said the BNF wants to make a thorough assessment before it could engage with other opposition parties.
He said that his party would prefer the talks to resume at least after the BMD congress next year, adding that all the parties have to be given ample opportunity to prepare for the talks.
“We want a project owned by the ordinary members of the political parties and not the leadership …we would prefer to have the talks after BMD has held its first congress,” he said.
So far, the opposition Botswana Movement for Democracy and Botswana Congress Party (BCP) have announced teams that will represent them at the talks.
The BCP has indicated that it wants the talks to start early and have the process completed before the end of 2011. The BCP has appointed its chairman Batisani Maswibilili, Busang Manewe, Dr Benjamin Bolaane, Phillip Monowe and Dr Nobantu Rasebotsa to represent it at the talks.
On the other hand, the Botswana Movement For Democracy (BMD) has announced that Lobatse legislator Nehemiah Modubule will lead the BMD team. The BMD negotiators also include Dr Tlamelo Mmatli, Dr Wilson Thupeng.
Dr Thapelo Otlogetswe and Dr Bashi Mothusi are expected to provide assistance to the BMD team.