Sunday, July 3, 2022

Migratory councillor rejoins BDP

Less than six months after he crossed floors from the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) to the Botswana National Front (BNF) Councillor Kabelo Mokgalajwe rejoined the BDP camp this week.
His latest political home was announced to the full council meeting on Tuesday.

The Gaphatshwa Ward Councillor told Sunday Standard in an interview that his main reason for rejoining BDP was “for my electorates’ appeal on Morope lay-out map to be given the justice it deserves”.

Now four years as a Councillor, he says he has lost interest in politics as his efforts to liberate his electorates from oppression have perpetually been thwarted by senior government officials and BDP leadership. He explained that he has lost interest in politics and will not stand for the coming general elections in 2014.

The controversial councillor, who happens to be the first Councillor in the Kweneng District if not the whole country to have had physical confrontation with Council Secretary over claims cheque, said his return to the BDP has got nothing to do with his personal life, marred by court cases.

He has over the past few years appeared in newspapers answering to allegedly committing offences against the land laws. From illegal possession of illicit drugs to car theft and, recently manhandling; the Councillor’s name has appeared alongside them all.

“It has got nothing to do with my personal life or the previous court cases as I am still reporting at the courts regularly. The Council Secretary has still had no action taken for ordering detention of my cheque. The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Officers who assaulted me on the 4th February 2012 have no action taken against them for what they did to me. I still do not have a passport as it is still with them,” said Mokgalajwe.

He said the reasons the BDP accepted his change of mind could be nothing more than the fact that, in politics, numbers matter a lot.

His return to the BDP means in Kweneng South East constituency, under whose jurisdiction his ward falls, the ruling party now has three councillors out of the nine in the whole constituency. Two of these are nominated councillors. This means the BDP now has two elected Councillors out of the seven in the whole Kweneng South East.

While he said his constituents appreciates his defection, one of them, Moemedi Mokgachane, from whom he snatched the ward seat in 2009, said he is wrong to move on the ground that his constituents can be given fair hearing.

“The BDP government does not help Batswana according to which party they belong. He is indirectly saying he is not joining BDP because he likes it or is going to last there. All he wants is to be favoured and then return to where he was. He is showing his true colours to the electorate,” said Mokgachane.

Morope lay-out map has been appearing in various publications. The village is one of those that existed long before the country’s independence. It is one of those whose residents have had tough time with government.

“The right thing I join the BDP so it does to my electorates is that they treat Morope like any other village. Take into consideration what is currently on the ground- fields, residential plots etc. The map as it is – the reason we are appealing about it – does not recognize existing structures. But this should not be the case as some plots’ certificates hand outs were frozen in year 2000. A lot has happened before the first draft map was drawn. There was the Kgabo Commission, the presidential amnesty; all of which were meant to pardon those who were allocated plots by traditional leaders,” he said.

Contacted for comment, the Secretary General for the Botswana Democratic Party, Mpho Balopi, said the reasons the Councillor gave for rejoining the BDP was that he was better positioned to serve the interest of his electorates.

“He could have given you other reasons but to us he explained that the opposition where he was also did not have direction and could not help him or electorates.”

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