Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Losing BDP candidates approach courts for vote recount

Botswana Democratic Party (BDP)’s Moggie Mbaakanyi and Elijah Katse are petitioning the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) after losing in the October 16 general elections.

Information reaching Sunday Standard says that the duo, from the ruling party, have since showed their dissatisfaction about the election results, suspecting there had been foul play during the counting process, hence a re-count should be made.

While Nehemiah Modubule, who won over Mbaakanyi, received a call from his constituency office informing him about the petition, Olebile Gaborone, who defeated Katse, was only slapped with petition documents on Thursday.
Mbaakanyi, formerly a specially elected MP, failed to make it back to parliament after losing the Lobatse constituency to Modubule who contested the elections as an independent candidate.

On the other hand, Katse lost the South East North constituency to the Botswana National Front’s Olebile Gaborone.
At Lobatse, Modubule made history when he retained the constituency as an independent candidate after polling 4175 votes to Mbaakanyi’s 4060 votes.
Also emerging as causalities in the race for the Lobatse constituency were BNF’s Otlaadisa Koosaletse, Botswana Congress Party’s Diane Taunyane and Kealeboga Modise of Botswana Thoka Tiro Organization.

BDP executive secretary, Dr Batlang Serema, confirmed that his party was indeed protesting the outcome of the results for the two constituencies. He further stated that the party had since referred the matter to the party lawyers Collins Newman and Company.

“We have referred the matter to the lawyers who are working closely with the candidates,” said Serema.
In an interview with the Sunday Standard, Modubule stated that Mbaakanyi’s letter of petition was not clear.

“I cannot clearly understand what she is complaining about. Even if I go through the whole letter, everything is just vague,” Modubule said. He, however, pointed out that all he can draw out from the whole saga is that Mbaakanyi is seeking the court to grant them permission to do a recount of the ballots.

In a separate interview Katse told the Sunday Standard that he is simply petitioning the results of the elections stating that “we were not happy with the counting process”.
He added that he would not go into much detail as everything is now before the court.

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The Telegraph September 30

Digital edition of The Telegraph, September 30, 2020.