The Executive Secretary of the BDP, Dr Comma Serema, recently articled a communiqu├® in local newspapers, mainly claiming that “there is still no alternative” (substitute) to the ruling BDP. BCP youth league would like to dismiss Serema’s convictions as ill-advised and misinformed, influenced by his cunning desire to desperately save the sinking dictatorial BDP, which has been hijacked by the former military men and the Khama family.
Waking up to reality that there are first time voters who have registered en-masse to vote out the BDP and save our democracy from the looming military rule and dictatorship in the next five years, Serema desperately tries to appeal to the first time voter’s to ignore the “opposition” and goes on to give reasons why he thinks the BDP deserves their votes and not the “opposition”. The BCP youth league have realized that Serema is clearly in the dark and misunderstands what Botswana Congress Party really is.
He confuses the BCP with the BNF and bundles them together as the “opposition”. Loudly, we the BCP youth league would like to distance the BCP from being defined as the “opposition”.
We wonder what led whoever coined the word “opposition” to associate it with political parties that are not in government. The word “opposition” is a wrong description of the BCP, especially looking at how we the BCP have been operating at the party level, councils and in parliament. Most of the time, we have not been opposing, but rather have been giving alternative policies through our party leadership, sitting councilors and the vocal BCP MP Dumelang Saleshando who has become the lone voice of an alternative in parliament.
To further disqualify the definition of “opposition” as non-applicable to us, trends show that while the BCP councilors and the BCP MP Saleshando were busy at work presenting noble alternative views and policies to improve the lives of Batswana, the BDP’s self-centered councilors and MPs were busy in the “opposition” opposing every motion that the BCP representatives brought up for the good of Batswana. This is why we would like to dismiss the description “opposition” as irrelevant to us the BCP because it carries a bad stigma behind it. We the BCP do not exist to oppose but rather to give alternative policies to the tired, same old policies spewed out by the ruling BDP which has so far rendered our people poverty stricken in the midst of abundant resources. Serema also makes a special reference to the eternal crisis and fighting that have become the order of the day at the BNF and opines that because of the fighting at the BNF, they as the BDP are automatically qualified as the no-match substitute.
While we agree with Serema that the BNF cannot be the alternative because of its unending internal crisis, the BDP’s characteristics are an exactly replica of the BNF.
Both the BNF and the BDP are fighting for the control of their parties and for leadership positions which is exhibited by the existence of factions both in the BNF and the BDP. At the BNF, there is the Moupo-Mohwasa faction vs. Modubule, Magama-Tafa faction which is calling itself the temporary platform. A replica of this at the BDP presents itself as Nkate-Merafhe faction vs. Kedikwile-Kwelagobe faction.
Worse still, lately the BDP has welcomed a third faction made of independents or Mekoko.
Honesty applied, at the BCP, no factions can be identified and the notion that there are no factions at the BCP because it is a small party – which is not true, are without substance because the BPP is smaller than the BCP and there exists Balikani faction vs. Gopolang faction. The absence of factions in the BCP is a result of the members and leadership of the BCP’s humble and human conscience that recognises and accepts the intrinsic obligation to accommodate each other’s diverse views in our duty to serve our people. We are not motivated by “go ja” at the BCP hence we are not fighting for positions. Both the BNF and the BDP are led by autocrats whose words are the final say in their respective parties.
They expel their members willy-nilly, hold their elected MPs hostage and dictate to them what to say in parliament and councils.
Serema cannot, therefore, be telling the nation that the BDP is still the better alternative while it’s current President Ian Khama has told the whole world that he is not interested in leading this country.
One wonders why Khama is still a politician as politics is a distant profession to his heart as compared to doing charity work. Serema says that the BCP claims to be a fashionable party. We at the BCP do not heap praises unto ourselves but Batswana and other independent observes have shown that the BCP is the only political party that has a popular appeal because of its sound management style and its clarity in terms of how it wants to make Botswana a better land for all of us.
In justifying why the BDP should be voted back to power, Serema says there are developments in this country but as we all know we cannot take advantage of the first ever World Cup 2010 in Africa because the current BDP President failed to stimulate effective infrastructural developments, which he was tasked to preside over while he was still the Vice President. Serema annoyingly mentions “international ratings, the prospering economy, and citizen empowerment schemes” as some of the basis on which the electorates should vote the BDP because. We dismiss this “international ratings” because most of these international bodies are bogus bodies that were established solely to blind developing countries citizens with their deceitful appraisals while conniving with government officials to loot the developing countries.
As for citizen economic empowerment, Serema should be ashamed because Batswana cannot access CEDA, NDB, SHHA, Out of school youth grant and other schemes as the BDP government has deliberately made them inaccessible for Batswana and only favours the foreigners. The only visible BDP’s economic empowerment schemes are namola leuba, graduates internship program and ISPAAD which are failing to cushion Batswana against the high food prices that come as a result of the BDP’s heavy reliance in buying South African food produce, and with election programmes like constituency football league and many of Batswana losing jobs daily as a result of the BDP government failure to diversify the economy, Serema has the audacity to appeal to Batswana to vote Back the BDP. God forbid! The BDP Executive Secretary needs a full lecture on what the BCP really is; its principles and beliefs, ideology and how it has managed to be the invincible force that it is today.
The BCP is not a party of few individuals, it is a party of the people with a clear vision of what they want to achieve. It is a party of the people who believe that Botswana can and must be better, people who believe that God gave us natural resources to share equally, we do not call each other “botate or mong-ame” at the BCP.
Contrary to Mompati Merafhe’s ill-conceived perception that the BCP is a bitter party, we are not a bitter party but a better alternative or rather call us smart and humble with a purpose to deliver our people from their afflictions of poverty and hunger inflicted to them by the BDP government. BDP is a bad alternative and Batswana will prove it come October. Change is inevitable and through our persistence and honesty, Batswana have rightly listened to the BCP.
*Osupile is BCP Youth League Secretary General