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12th Parliament brings in 42 new faces

28 Oct 2019

The 12th Parliament brings in 42 new brooms, 11 retaining their seats, while some are bouncing back to Parliament as they formed part of previous Parliaments, either voted or as specially elected members such as Jwaneng Mabutsane’s Mephato Reatile, Goodhope-Mabule’s Eric Molale, Maun West’s Dumelang Saleshando and Tonota’s Pono Moatlhodi.

President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi is expected to lead a pack of new faces in the cabinet since almost all previous cabinet members failed to comeback.

Few notable ones returning to Parliament from the previous cabinet are Former Vice President, Mr Slumber Tsogwane, former Minister of Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security, Mr Eric Molale, former Minister of Agriculture Development and Food Security, Mr Fidelis Molao, former assistant minister of Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration, Mr Machana Shamukuni, former Assistant Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, Mr Karabo Gare and former Assistant

Minister of Health and Wellness Mr Sethomo Lelatisitswe.

Despite a high profile split from the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) in May 2019 when some of its members formed the new Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF), the BDP's vote share increased as the party won 38 of the 57 elected seats in the National Assembly, a gain of one compared to the 2014 elections while BPF won three seats which were considered BDP stronghold.

The coalition movement which comprises Botswana National Front (BNF), Botswana People’s Party (BPP) and Botswana Congress Party (BCP) garnered 15 seats while the Alliance for Progressives (AP) which  is a breakaway movement from Botswana Movement for Democracy won only one seat.

The BDP made a whitewash in some of the opposition strongholds such as Gaborone, winning all the five Gaborone constituencies Parliamentary seats and almost all local government seats.

However, the party lost some seats at its stronghold of Serowe since history of the BDP, as it lost three Serowe constituencies which have been claimed by the newly formed Botswana Patriotic Front while Palapye and Mahalapye which are also considered BDP stronghold was won by UDC, as well as Shoshong Constituency.

Notable among the BDP’s stronghold casualties was the Sefhare-Ramokgonami seat which was lost by former minister of Transport and Communication, Ms Dorcus Makgato to UDC’s Dr Kesitegile Gobotswang.

Dr Gobotswang like Bobonong MP elect, Mr Taolo Lucas and Molepolole South MP elect, Mr Kabo Morwaeng are some of the old but new faces that would form part of the 12th Parliament after lady luck smiled on them in the 2019 general elections.

Both Dr Gobotswang and Mr Lucas lost more than thrice in the previous elections, while Mr Morwaeng was trying his luck for the sixth time.

The biggest upsets of the 2019 was the fall of Gaborone Bonington North and Leader of Opposition, Advocate Duma Boko, who lost to BDP’s Ms Anna Mokgethi, who also won following two unsuccessful spells in her former party of Botswana Congress Party.

Another upset was witnessed at Tonota constituency where Mr Thapelo Olopeng was defeated by UDC's Mr Pono Moatlhodi.

The Leader of Alliance for Progressives, Mr Ndaba Gaolathe also lost the Gaborone Bonnington South to BDP’s new MP, Mr Christian Greef who was also fielded for the second time.

Maun West MP elect, Mr Dumelang Saleshando who once represented Gaborone Central, following which he lost to Dr Phenyo Butale in the 2014 general election.

Boteti West MP, Mr Slumber Tsogwane who is also the Vice President remains leader of the house as the oldest serving MP. ENDS

Source : BOPA

Author : Mmoniemang Motsamai

Location : GABORONE

Event : Parliament

Date : 28 Oct 2019