Sunday, January 16, 2022

Ramsden boycotts BDP candidates launch in Maun

Maun East Member of Parliament Frank Ramsden at the weekend snubbed the launch of Botswana Democratic Party parliamentary candidate for the same area Kostantinos Markus. The Telegraph learnt at the rally that Ramsden who lost to Markus during the party’s primary elections was invited to attend the launch but did not show up.

The former Minister of Transport and Communications had initially approached the Central Committee protesting the results of the primary elections but his request fell on deaf ears and later threatened to approach the courts. Markus beat Ramsden by 1373 to 563 votes.

Ramsden had said elections were flawed, alleging gross irregularities with regard to the voters roll and that some names were missing from the list.

Meanwhile some of the candidates who had lost in the primaries and were also believed to have some grievances attended the launch in what was viewed as more of a reconciliation event than a ordinary launch.  

Councilors Tebogo Bethia and Michael Bingani, both of whom contested for the same constituency and lost during the primaries were later summoned to the podium by the party secretary general Mpho Balopi to embrace and shake hands with the prospective candidates.

The defeated council candidates were also called forward and ordered to shake hands with winners of the primary elections.
Balopi called on democrats to unite and work for the party and for the benefit of Maun East constituents who look up to them for direction.

“Bethia and Bingani need to be saluted, because they have portrayed to be true democrats, which is what the party always encourages. It is very normal for competing people to differ because not all of them are bound to win, and it happens everywhere.”

North West District Council Chairman, Latlhang Molonda who is also the incumbent councilor for Nokaneng/Habu in the Ngami constituency said unlike other people who join politics for personal gains, Markus is not anywhere near that. He said as a renowned businessman, Markus has and continues to create jobs for locals, and that he is destined to do even more.

For his part, BDP national campaign manager Alec Seametso said Maun East constituents should vote for Markus. He said Maun constituents should support the BDP government in their endeavor to discourage tribalism which has become rife in this part of the country, fuelled by opposition parties.

“I stand to challenge those who maintain that our president is a dictator while he has done a lot for this country. Khama has fought for this country and continues to do so. People in other countries live in abject poverty, but our country through the BDP government is busy working at ensuring that we do not end there, as evidenced by the numerous poverty eradication programes we have in place”.

Meanwhile Markus promised not to disappoint. He said he has always had the interests of Batswana at heart, something which he will hold on to, even after the general elections.

“I was born and bred here, and so I know what your expectations are. All I am asking is for you to take me to parliament so that we push developments. I will from time to time consult with you as per your expectations.”

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