Real Alternative Party on brink of dissolving - chairperson
05 Feb 2023
The Real Alternative Party (RAP) is on the brink of dissolution, just within four years of existences.
RAP was formed in 2019, with a manifesto titled: The Gainful Call for People’s Needs and Their Dignity.
Party chairperson, Mr Gaontebale Mokgosi said the RAP was formulated to put the poor at the front of the struggle, adding that they went into the last general elections with a message centred around wealth distribution in a manner that generated a sense of fairness; to raise everyone beyond poverty status with the increase of a minimum wage to P6 500 monthly and the introduction of unemployed allowance.
Nonetheless, Mr Mokgosi confirmed in an interview that embarking on a revolutionary agenda of socialism, which RAP was premised on, was a tall order in Botswana, hence the party’s poor showing and ‘possible’ dissolution.
He said the pro-socialist party was in a quest to advance the economic justice agenda; to eradicate social discrepancies and ensure social justice for Batswana.
Mr Mokgosi, however, lamented that the party’s ideologies of socialism did not flow with the existent capitalists’ coercive power of exploitation and domination in Botswana.
He said the party also lacked the essential active membership power to advance its political programme of raising socialism consciousness and to build structures across the breadth and length of Botswana.
This, he said made RAP lack the counter power to effectively pursue its revolutionary path, highlighting that RAP was not only formed with the motive to capture state power, but was keen to strength the country’s democracy by offering alternatives to improve livelihoods.
Mr Mokgosi further stated that lack of funds was his party’s main downfall. He, therefore, pleaded with government to consider political party funding.
“Government should acknowledge that time has come for Botswana to join many nations worldwide in the realisation that there is no democracy without the existence of political parties that compete for power,” he said.
He added that the cost of funding political parties had been accepted worldwide as a legitimate cost of democracy, hence political parties just like citizens, paid their taxes and as such deserved to be funded by the state.
“State or public funding will discourage overreliance of political parties on foreign funding that may be dangerous to the country’s democracy as the funding may come with negative conditions,” Mr Mokgosi said.
Further, he said it was demoralising that their application to be incorporated into the opposition party coalition was also rejected despite the party having a membership of over 3 000 country wide. Mr Mokgosi indicated that it was on that backdrop that RAP was contemplating dissolution in accordance with its constitution. ENDS
Source : BOPA
Author : Thato Mosinyi
Location : GABORONE
Event : INTERVIEW
Date : 05 Feb 2023