Sunday, September 27, 2020

‘We don’t condone flogging’ – BCPYL

The Botswana Congress Party Youth League (BCPYL) recently rubbished reports of them allegedly backing Kgosi Kgafela on the issue of flogging wrongdoers after a press release, entitled “Kgosi Kgafela II to address BCP Youth”, roused controversy.

The Youth League claims that the media chose to distort their intended message.
“BCP Youth League wishes to state it clearly that it cannot support any ways of disciplining other than the one agreed democratically both at the traditional/Kgotla and in the modern borrowed law. It will be irresponsible of us to support anyone for going around “flogging” people unlawfully.

Simply, we are saying that we support corporal punishment as applied by Kgosi-Kgafela II and as accepted by the law, ratified by Bakgatla in their meeting on the 6th of February 2010,” read a memo written by BCPYL president, Lotty Manyapetsa.

The BCP’s youth league had recently publicly come out in support of Kgosi Kgafela’s leadership style in Kgatleng and invited him to officiate at their upcoming Youth League National Conference.

“By our mention of the leadership style, we are referring to his re-introduction of Bogwera and Bojwale used as a measure to mould his people into a society we can be proud of and his application of Sekgatla norms and practices as a measure he uses to deal with social ills bedevilling our society,” read the statement

The youth league conference is to be held in Francistown on the 3rd to the 4th of April.

The President of the BCPYL confirmed that Kgafela would be officiating at the conference on the said dates.
“We believe that as a young chief he is the right person to be addressing the youth on issues concerning their welfare. We also believe that his initiatives, such as bringing “Go rupa” back have upheld the country’s cultural heritage, which we the BCP believe in,” said Manyapetsa.

Since ascending to the chieftaincy full time, Kgafela has been making headlines with his bold measures against what he terms wrong doers.

Kgafela was recently under heavy criticism for his use of Mephato to flog wrongdoers.

He made headlines when he made the call to ban home brewed alcohol, Khadi, which he termed to be ‘toxic poison’ in Kgatleng.

It was recently reported that he had threatened to close down sheebens in his area because they didn’t respect the liquor trading hours.

“We support the Kgosi’s initiatives to curb the social ills that home brewed alcohol brings upon the society, we also commend him for banning Khadi,”said Manyapetsa.

Meanwhile, the BCPYL’s Information and Publicity Secretary, Seabelo Thekiso, clearly stated in the first press release that no members of the Botswana National Youth Council (BNYC) were invited to attend the conference to be held in Francistown. The conference will reportedly discuss, among other things, its position in the party’s coming central committee elections, constitutional amendment, current State/progress and future of the BCP and branding the youth league.

“Usually the league invited officials from the BNYC, but have since decided to snub the youth organisation after the apparent nepotistic hiring of the current Executive Secretary Fidelis Molao who served previously as BDP’s assistant Executive Secretary,” wrote Thekiso.

Supporting Seabelo’s sentiments, Manyapetsa added that the youth league is still very much against the idea of a BDP official appointed for the position of the BNYC’s executive secretary.

“We don’t want him there because we know that at one point he had expressed an interest in standing as a candidate at one constituency under the BDP flag; that is no secret, therefore inviting him to our conference would be like inviting a BDP official to the event and that is clearly not how we operate,” said Manyapetsa.

Other dignitaries expected to grace the occasion include the BCP President Gilson Saleshando, BCP Secretary General Taolo Lucas, and the regional chairman for Francistown region Vain Mamela.

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Sunday Standard September 27 – 3 October

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of September 27 - 3 October, 2020.