In a curious development, Vice President Mokgweetsi Masisi seems to have known that he was already the winner of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) chairmanship race.
On Friday before the elections were held, sources leaked a pamphlet in which Masisi paid tribute to members of the BDP to have ensured that he retained his chairmanship post.
“Motswana wetsho ke lebogela tlhopho ya gago, ke itlama go tswelela ke godisa phathi ya rona le go direla Batswana ka kakaretso,” read the premature message of celebration.
The congratulatory message added; “ Le ba ba sa ntlhophang ke le kopa gore re atlane re bereke mmogo go sireletsa phathi ya domi e re e ratang rotlhe. Tsamayang ka tshisibalo, modimo a nne le lona.”
The moneyed Masisi camp had introduced ways of keeping people motivated prior and during the elective congress. During the eve of the congress camp ‘Dubai’ as he named it after one of the richest cities in the world was the place where every member of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party wanted to be associated with. Tents and blankets, food and lots of entertainment were available at the camp sites. This is where Masisi communicated his message to delegates present, and persuaded them to vote for him.
In the end this was how Minister of Infrastructure Science and Technology Nonofo Molefhi was beaten 769 against 261 votes he garnered.
Samson Moyo Guma, Member of Parliament for Tati East seems to have played a big role behind the scenes to ensure that Masisi won.
This publication met with Moyo Guma on the eve of the electoral congress in Tonota and his first words were, “someone please advise Molefhi not to contest tomorrow because he will be humiliated.”
“Look, politics is not a game of radios, newspapers and social media. Politics is the people on the ground, politics is the message you share with the people on the ground, they have to know your intentions and if they grasped the message you are set for victory. That is what will happen tomorrow.”
In an interview with this publication following the convincing victory, Masisi said curtly, “We did it for power.”
Pressed why he saw it necessary to contest for the chairmanship post, Masisi said “It was absolutely important that I stand because we are in a transitional state in the BDP and in the country.”
“I cannot regress in my quest for political power. This is all about political power. I yearned to retain the same amount as I prepare to assume more.”
Masisi said now they are ready as the ruling party to wage war against the opposition. “And we will beat them thoroughly.”
This publication took another night tour to Molefhi’s camp.
It was a totally different view as compared to Masisi.
The camp named “marakanelo” looked old fashioned, weather beaten, and pale.
There was no fanfare and certainly no glamour.
The writing was on the wall that Molefhi could only win through magic.
His well wishers knew by Friday night that Molefhi was not going to win. His foot soldiers told this publication on the night of Friday that if he won it would be a miracle.
The Telegraph gathered that he was advised by party elders during the week into the elective congress not to contest but Molefhi insisted to go ahead.
His camp is said to have even advised him to withdraw before some of them decided to pull out and join the moneyed camp led by Masisi.
“BDP is a winner. BDP has a culture and a tradition that has all the years been respected, nurtured and managed. Today’s process is manifestation of the tradition of the party of going for elective congress at prescribed intervals,” said Molefhi.
Molefhi still hopes for the party chairmanship, if it happens that the party decides that he should be the next chairman when Masisi ascends to presidency.