Former Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) national youth Chairman, Dithapelo Tshotego has confirmed his resignation from the ruling party effective February 29th 2016.
In an interview with The Telegraph on Monday, Tshotego revealed that he has decided to join the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) as he believes that the party tackles issues through consultation and makes all members feel like they belong.
In fact, Tshotego said he regrets not being part of the BDP during its formation.
“I regret that I was not part of the formation of the UDC. I even feel like I had a hand in hampering the UDC’s efforts to build their structures. I regret that and wish I could make up for lost time. However I am happy that despite all the negativity that was thrown at the party by the BDP, the UDC still soldiered on and has proven to be a much bigger and wiser movement,” he said.
Tshotego revealed that he long made up his mind to quit the BDP, but decided to prolong his stay as he had hope that his former party will address and iron out some tormenting issues, but all in vain. Tshotego is a long standing member of the ruling party, who has also held numerous leadership positions.
He was National Youth Deputy Chairman from 2008-2009, nominated councillor in Palapye constituency between 2009 and 2014, and subsequently served as National Youth Chairman from 2009-2013. He also served in the Political Education and Elections Committee (PEEC), a subcommittee of the Central Committee whose mandate is to lure new members into the party; and also as the coordinator of both national and regional campaigns.
Going forward, Tshotego says he intends to work for the UDC with more vigour than he has ever demonstrated at the BDP. He said he has previously shown interest in contesting for the BDP Chairmanship but dropped out in the eleventh hour due to financial constraints. Had he won the Chairmanship, Tshotego says he would have effected a lot of changes in the BDP and government.
“Our government has a lot of loopholes and it is run and operated like a household,” he said.
He described his defection to the UDC as “moving on to the new testament” where there will be consultation and transparency.
“BDP leaders like to make decisions as individuals and not as a collective. I left because I didn’t want to account for or defend decisions which were made during my absence,” he said.
Tshotego further revealed that he was distressed by the BDP’s failure to empower the youth and recognize their capabilities when allocating positions of power.
“The recent appointment of BDP heavy weights in government was flawed. There are many people within the BDP who deserved to be appointed instead. Appointments shouldn’t be about favours, but abilities and talents. This practice is bad and should be discouraged,” he said.
Tshotego also dismissed the Economic Stimulus Program (ESP) as an enigma that even BDP members’ do not understand.
“What I know for a fact is that the ESP is only going to benefit a handful. Some have already benefitted. The BDP youth will finally see the light and leave that party. Right now they have bottled things up because they fear being thrown out,” he said. Efforts to reach BDP Secretary General Botsalo Ntuane proved futile as his phone rang unanswered.