Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Dow’s BDP membership draws mixed feelings

Former High Court Judge and human rights lawyer Dr Unity Dow’s admission into the Botswana has stocked apprehensions surrounding the appointment of judges.

Gaborone based prominent lawyer Dick Bayford of Bayford and Associates says that it is not clear when Unity Dow started developing interest in active party politics. Bayford says this raises questions on whether, as a Judge Dow was a card carrying member of any political party particularly the BDP.

“As the appointment of Judges in Botswana continues to be surrounded by secrecy, the public would never know if those who are appointed to the Judiciary are party functionaries in disguise or whether the appointment is informed by meritorious consideration,” said Bayford.

According to Bayford, it could well be that as a Judge, Dow was BDP member and that her recent public declaration into politics is merely window dressing. Member of Parliament for Kgatleng East Isaac Mabiletsa says Dow is welcome to the rough and tumble of politics as she has picked a party of her choice. Mabiletsa says it is a shame for Dow to associate with a party known for corruption, deterioration of democracy and human right abuses such as the forced relocation of Basarwa from the CKGR.

Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) Women’s League Chairperson, Angelina Sengalo said they welcomed Dow’s decision to join the party. She further stated that Dow was a big catch because she knows what Batswana need following her experience at the bench as High Court Judge.

Sengalo says Dow has come to the right party where her services are needed adding that President Lt Gen Ian Khama has displayed a lot of confidence in women leaders.

“I want to urge all women who got lost and left BDP to join other parties to return home.”

Gender links Botswana Director, Keobonye Ntsabane, said they support Dow’s decision to join politics as this will add to the voice of women in politics and enhance the role played by Batswana women in the country’s governance. Ntsabane says Batswana women are underrepresented in political decision making structures like the national assembly and councils and Dow’s venture into politics will help keep Batswana women’s hope alive.

She added that she had a chance to work with Dow previously as an executive member at the women’s organization. She described her as an influential goal-getter.

Ntsabane says Dow is a champion of the underprivileged and has used many platforms to champion the cause of women, children, the poor and the marginalized.

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