Opposition Botswana Peoples Party leadership has resolved to contest Francistown Monarch West by-election as the party pulled a considerable number of votes in the previous national elections in the ward.
Monarch West Ward became vacant following the demise of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party councilor who won the seat in a fiercely contested vote.
The revelation comes in conflict with its partner in the Umbrella project, the Botswana Movement for Democracy, which has shown interest in the looming contest.
“We have not been officially notified of BMD intentions. In fact, I do not know if the party has some interests in the area,” BPP national chairman, Richard Gudu, said, adding that his party has to officially present their ambitions to the Umbrella partners.
The Botswana National Front, BMD and BPP revived and resolved to work together in an election vote under the Umbrella project to oust BDP, which has been in control of the country’s levers for decades.
The electoral cooperation initiative suffered a devastated blow late December as the parties could not find a common ground over allocation of constituencies with another partner, the Botswana Congress Party, which opted to go it alone.
Gudu is, however, not puzzled that BMD would want to contest, insisting that as a new and vibrant party with interest to make a maiden appeal it fits to show some interest.
“The party has not communicated to us as a matter of fact. But if that is the case the matter would be best solved by the Umbrella leadership,” he maintained.
For his part, Francistown West MP, Wynter Mmolotsi, confirmed his party’s interest in the whole of Francistown constituencies, insisting BMD has made in-roads into Monarch West which would send some shock waves.
He, however, concurred with Gudu, maintaining that the matter would be solved by the Umbrella project leaders whom he said were in a meeting on Friday over another electoral initiative signed between opposition parties.
Gudu insists BPP is not part of the MoU and on the back of such a background could not be dictated to by the agreement, save the Umbrella initiative.
BCP qualifies under the troubled MoU to contest Monarch West ward by virtue of their performance in the area in the previous national elections.
The Umbrella’s choice would see the party contest against buoyant BDP and BCP which has since declared would contest the area- both by virtue of the MoU and their decision to abandon the Umbrella and to go it alone.