Thursday, July 9, 2020

BPP to join opposition rollercoaster

Main opposition parties have denied suggestions they could be behind Botswana Peoples Party and MELS reluctance to join the cooperation project.

The three main opposition parties ÔÇô BNF, BCP and BMD, now popularly known as the ‘Holy Trinity’, have said they are eager to welcome any opposition party willing to link with the noble ambition to oust the ruling Botswana Democratic Party.

Botswana Congress Party, Botswana Movement for Democracy and Botswana National Front have recently signed a memorandum of understanding, which, among other things, spells out a no contest between themselves in the event of future by-elections.

The Memorandum of Understanding has been hailed as the first most significant step towards opposition cooperation.

Analysts have consistently pointed at a fragmented opposition as the main reason behind continued BDP rule which has been experiencing a steady decline in its share of popular vote.

In all the joint opposition meetings, the other two parties, MELS and the Botswana Peoples Party, have been conspicuous by their absence.

“We are willing to accommodate each and every opposition party into the cooperation project.

In fact, BPP recently sent a letter to notify us that they are more than willing to be part of the initiative,” said BCP president, Dumelang Saleshando, adding the reason the BPP would not immediately come to the party was purely because of the internal problems the party was entangled in at the time.

“Now that they have communicated to us, informing us about their readiness to be part of us, we believe there is nothing to stop us from embracing them,” Saleshando said.

Speaking about MELS, Saleshando said the party President has not been very keen on opposition cooperation.

“He [Themba Joina] has on several occasions dismissed the project,” said Saleshando.
BMD president, Gomolemo Motswaledi, has echoed the same sentiments expressed by his colleague.
“BPP have communicated to us and we have given them a green light as cooperation is the only option to do away with the BDP,” said Motswaledi.

A BPP executive member has confirmed their readiness to join the opposition cooperation train.

“They never shunned us. In fact, our party internal problems contributed to the delay. Today I can confirm to you that we are more than ready to join cooperation project as evidenced by our letter to the negotiating team,” confirmed BPP chairperson, Richard Gudu, in an interview.

“We participated in the previous meeting and we will be participating in the coming meeting this week,” Gudu further revealed.

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Sunday Standard July 5 – 11

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of July 5 - 11, 2020.