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Opposition parties reflect on performance

28 Oct 2019

Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) vice president, Mr Dumelang Saleshando says they will continue to support their leader Advocate Duma Boko as he has done a lot for the party despite his loss during the October 23 general election.

Mr Saleshando who is also the newly elected MP for Maun West said during a press briefing on October 25 that most candidates emerged victorious because of the energy he exuded during the party campaigns in the drive up towards the election.

Of the 15 parliamentary seats won by UDC, 4 are from the Ngamiland region which is made of Maun East, Ngami, Maun West and Okavango. UDC has also won the majority of the council seats across the district.

During the 2014 election, three seat had been in the hands of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) while one being Maun West was under the opposition.

He, however, expressed disappointment at the loss of some constituencies especially in the south which he said were UDC strongholds. He said they would go back to the drawing board and introspect to see what went wrong and how they could improve.

Mr Saleshando hailed the electorate for making history and assured them that the four MPs and their councillors would join hands and do all their best to bring change in the region.

“We are all over the moon to have totally won the region from Botswana Democratic Party through your support. I salute you for entrusting us with the responsibility to represent you. We have won convincingly as we secured a record number of council seats in the region,” he stressed.

Meanwhile giving the party’s perspective in regard to the elections, Real Alternative Party (RAP) chairperson Mr Gaontebale Mokgosi did not have any reservations about the election processes on voting day.

He said the party’s performance was affected by resources which limited their campaigns. RAP had fielded three representatives in Gaborone Bonnington South, Gaborone Bonnington North and Gabane-Mankgodi constituencies. However, they did not win any seats.

He said their loss would not deter them from selling their vision to the people of Botswana with the aim to achieve better living conditions for all.

He said they would also focus on the growth of the party by recruiting more members.

Our strategy is to now build our party as it is still new to ensure that the structures become national,” he said.

Mr Mokgosi said looking at the challenges they encountered during the pre-election period, among them finance, the intention was to lobby for party funding.

Alliance for Progressives (AP) secretary-general Dr Phenyo Butale said his party had regrettably noted a lot of worrying irregularities during the election.

He said irregularities included instances whereby people who had registration cards could not vote as they did not appear in the voters roll.

“The process of voting was too sluggish. IEC did not look prepared. People waited in the queue for a long time,” he said.

The AP has won one seat in the Francistown South constituency.

He said the AP was still investigating and getting reports from party representatives across the country not with the intention to register a petition.

“We are pursuing this not because we want to register a petition but to get the truth,” he said.

Dr Butale said they would continue to build the party and sell their message to the masses.

He assured the party members that none of them would join any party as alluded by some private newspapers and social media.

“We are not driven by comfort or lavish lifestyle. Our members should know that the journey towards the new Botswana continues,” he said.

Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) representatives were not available for an interview. However, BPF won three seats in Serowe North, Serowe South and Serowe West. ENDS

Source : BOPA

Author : Esther Mmolai

Location : MAUN

Event : Press briefing

Date : 28 Oct 2019