- Dr. Madigele, MP Greeff face-off - Dr. Madigele accused of campaigning ahead of 2023 primaries - Regional committee suspends party activities - Gaborone Region accused of being conflicted
Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) is a party at war with itself at Gaborone Bonnington South as members clash over the conduct of party activities in the constituency.
The infighting that started ahead of the Bophirima Ward by-election, which the party lost, rages on and has forced for the intervention of the Central Committee, as some believe that the regional committee is conflicted.
The chaos is centered around the conduct of ward congresses and the presence of former Mmathethe-Molapowabojang Member of Parliament Dr. Alfred Madigele.
Dr. Madigele who is also former cabinet member has since transferred his membership from Mmathethe-Molapowabojang to the Gaborone Bonnington South.
Even though there have been claims that Madigele is to challenge the area MP, Christian Greeff in the coming BDP primary elections, he has dismissed such claims. The infighting in the constituency has resulted in the suspension of party activities.
So far, the party has conducted congresses for three Wards which some are questioning the processes and demand that they be nullified. About three members of the party and Madigele have been reported to the regional committee and Member of Central Committee (MCC)
responsible for Gaborone Lt Gen (Rtd) Tebogo Masire for intervention.
The branch committee lodged a complaint with the region stating that the group of people who are causing all these unnecessary tension in the constituency is identified and allegedly known as Dr. Madigela’s team who is said to be campaigning for the 2023 primary elections.
According to the branch, they witnessed the same team with similar misconduct during Bophirima ward by-elections which they believe caused the party to lose the ward and continue to bring the image of the party into disrepute.
In a letter written to Masire seen by this publication, Greeff stated that his branch committee has been brought into a state of disarray by Dr. Madigele whom he said is campaigning for a Parliamentary seat.
"Dr. Madigele has been peddling untruths among democrats, claiming that he has been asked by the party president, to come contest for a Parliamentary in our constituency," Greeff said.
Botswana Guardian can reveal that Masire convened a meeting on Monday last week at Tsholetsa House to deal with the issue about Madigele and the area MP. Another meeting was held at Tsholetsa House convened by the regional committee on Tuesday.
The Gaborone Bonington South Branch Secretary Donald Tsabeng wrote to the region to lodge a complaint regarding misconduct by certain members of BDP in their constituency.
He indicated that there are several incidents where these individuals have been causing uncalled for disruptions during party activities in Gaborone Bonnington South.
He said of late an instance of note was during the current ward congress where there was vulgar verbal use of words, physical aggressions and unbecoming behaviour by certain members of the party during congress proceedings. “Instances of interruptions and disturbances during congress were noted at the Kgale view ward congress where an identified individual by the name of Thuto Motswiri caused interruptions to a point where the congress was temporary halted.
“One of the most concerning instances was when there was physical and verbal aggression towards our area Hon MP by the same Motswiri causing disturbances and interruptions during congress proceedings.
“On another note of concern was an instance of vulgar verbal exchange of words of disrespect towards the Kgale View Councillor by a individual identified as Nobo Manyapetsa during congress proceedings at Boswa Primary School in Kgale view ward.
“Still at Kgale view there was a lady by the name of Pearl Joubert who was disturbing the proceedings of the congress with verbal aggression,” said Tsabeng, adding that they have noted that there is no communication from the Wards to the Branch regarding ward congresses.
He pointed out there are instances of congress election being held at Party members’ individual residences without prior communication with relevant BDP members and structures in the wards.
According to the secretary, an individual by the name Letang Mobea is alleged to be a part of the group of individuals who are conducting these secret congresses. Both Dr. Madigele and Greeff confirmed the Monday meeting with the MCC Lt Gen Masire. Greeff said he would not discuss the matter as it is internal and remains hopeful that it will be resolved amicably internally.
Dr. Madigele stated that even though he has transferred his membership, it is wrong to attribute developments in the area to him. He contends that he has for long been a resident of Phase 4 and also operates his business in the constituency.
According to Madigele, being in the area and participating in party activities should not be concluded to mean that he intends to run for parliamentary office.
Efforts to reach Lt Gen Masire were futile at the time of going to press.