The Botswana National Front Youth League has reportedly taken a decision to disband itself to “guard against the systematic persecution of youth league members by the party executive committee”.
The Telegraph is reliably informed that the BNFYL met on Saturday to exert pressure on the executive committee and lobby for the unconditional reinstatement of suspended BNFYL President Kagiso Ntime. A surprise awaited the youth league at the meeting, as it emerged that the central committee has dealt them yet another blow, this time suspending Secretary for Political Education Malatsi Mokhubami and party veteran Lemogang Ntime, Kagiso’s father. Both men have publicly castigated the BNF executive committee for suspending Ntime.
Malatsi was quoted in the media saying the BNFYL does not recognize Ntime’s suspension, while Ntime senior publicly castigated the BNF leadership at a BNFYL political rally. After news of Malatsi and Ntime senior’s suspension surfaced, the BNFYL changed tact and lobbied for their complete dissolution to guard against the continued persecution of their members. The decision was put to a vote, and the majority voted for the dissolution of the youth league. Ntime on Monday told The Telegraph that the BNFYL was within its rights to opt for dissolution, as there is no law in the BNF constitution that bars them from doing so.
“The executive committee has repeatedly tried to lobby members of the youth league to their side, seeking to use them to push their selfish interests. But youth league members are very principled and they refused. Now the executive committee is looking to destroy, one by one, those who refuse to be used as pawns,” said Ntime.
He commended the youth league for their decision, saying it is a clear indication that they will not allow the executive to use them as pawns.
“Now the youth have declared war on their leaders. The BNF is more divided than ever before. The BNF leadership is to blame for all this mess. Boko and his cronies are worse dictators that President Ian Khama,” said Ntime.
He alleged that there is a cabal of six people within the BNF leadership who are sowing seeds of discord within the party.
He said the BNF central committee is almost dysfunctional, as they were only convened after three months to come and rubber stamp his suspension.
Ntime was chided for undermining the party’s resolution to cooperate with other political parties to unseat the ruling party as a collective, by writing a position paper casting aspersions on the viability of the opposition Umbrella project.
At the height of the acrimony, Ntime broke ranks with long time political ally, Arafat Khan, who is now fighting from Boko’s corner. The BNFYL has since suspended Khan as its Secretary General.
It is alleged that Ntime is working with some within the BNF to oust Duma Boko as President at the party’s next elective congress. There is another allegation that those who lend Ntime support in denouncing the Umbrella project are Kopano members who are eying council seats.