The Botswana Congress Party (BCP) contested five post-2019 council by-elections and a single parliamentary by-election outside the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) and lost all of them. The party President Dumelang Saleshando has explained why his party did not do so well.“Although we did very well given the circumstances, we nevertheless failed to win any. Many reasons account for this, including the use of money bags by our opponents to buy voters, confusion on whether we are still part of UDC or not, and our failure to work sufficiently hard to overcome all challenges,” said Saleshando.He observed that during the by-election campaign, the party struggled to put sufficient boots on the ground. In addition, the BCP was both under-resourced and lacked a winning strategy.“On many occasions, we were gullible and believed anyone who said they would vote for us would do so. On some occasions we lost people who had committed to voting for us on polling day itself,” noted Saleshando. He went on tosuggest that in addition to election disappointments, the BCP also lost a number of councillors who were lured by promise of elicit funds and immunity to primary elections.“Their departure proved beyond doubt that all along these were just fellow spineless travellers who had not understood what BCP stands for. We are better off without them. Organizers on the ground report that these defectors did not shake our support in anyway and that in their place many new members swelled our ranks,” he added.Saleshando further paid tribute to the majority of party councillors who refused to be lured and, instead chose to stay the course. “We sometimes spend too much time lamenting the departure of the weak and not appreciating the strength demonstrated by those who chose to abide by the values of the BCP. They are our true ambassadors and can proudly proclaim to the voters that, they kept the faith, they have fought the good fight,” stated the confidentSaleshando.The BCP leader went on to announce the unveiling of several individuals from the Alliance for Progressive (AP) who refused to join the UDC when their party affiliated to the UDC recently. Saleshando also officially announced the cooperation talks between his party and the Botswana Labour Party (BLP).“We are determined to build a political platform. A BCP Plus that will focus on rekindling hope that we can resuscitate our country and give it a new lease of life. Our people have demonstrated hunger for a new beginning. This hunger is not stoppable. Not even the DIS-led rigging will stop these because when change comes even some of the DIS operatives used by the powers that be, will gather and store evidence of criminality by the BDP and share with us,” said Saleshando, adding that many Batswana are worried by opposition fragmentation.“We too are worried. We had hoped it is possible to agree not to oppose each other at constituencies that are obvious strongholds of the other in order to guarantee change, but it seems our other friends in the opposition may not be interested.This however shall not stop us to seek to build a platform that seeks to capture the best in us and enable us to transcend our divided past, reduce the fragmentation in the political landscape and to re-align politics towards a focus on putting Botswana first,” reasoned the BCP leader, who called upon each party member to take personal responsibility to make the party win in 2024.His hope is that each and every member of the party, activists and the leadership can make it their personal mission to make their party succeed. “I am sure you learnt the hard lessons from the bye-elections on how to mobilize and win. Elections as you know are not won in weeks. They are won in years. Those who, as a result of the confusion, whether we are in UDC or not, and didn’t know what to do, must now go out and mobilize for BCP and its alliance partners once congress has pronounced its position of future elections,” appealed Saleshando.He further said it is the daily deeds and mobilization efforts of each BCP members during all critical phases of the elections that will determine a win by the BCP. Saleshando further announced that the party primary elections will be conducted in the months of August and September this year.