Africa-Press – Botswana. The Minister of Finance, Peggy Serame’s rumoured intentions of contesting for the Goodhope-Mabule Member of Parliament (MP) seat under the ticket of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) are believed to be causing tension and divisions amongst members of the party in the constituency.
Although Serame remains mum on her alleged political ambitions, party sources in the constituency revealed that she is already active on the ground. It is reported that President Mokgweetsi Masisi is one of those backing her candidacy. Incumbent MP Eric Molale is expected to retire from active politics when his term ends in 2024.
Nonetheless, it is understood that Goodhope Sub District Council chairperson Kenaleone Motsaathebe was the intended heir to Molale’s seat. This publication has been informed that ahead of the 2019 general elections, the Goodhope-Mabule BDP branch was able to convince Motsaathebe not to challenge Molale in the 2018 BDP primaries and, in return, Molale and the rest of the branch would support him ahead of the 2024 general elections. However, Serame’s arrival in the constituency has seen the branch change its position on their initial agreement.
While Motsaathebe said he was not in any position to reveal whether he would be contesting for the seat of MP, he confirmed that a deal was reached with Molale in 2019. “We agreed on a compromise deal. The agreement was that I would not challenge Rre Molale in the primaries and, in turn, he would support me in the next election, but that does mean that other candidates would be barred from contesting. This agreement was done in the presence of the branch leadership,” said Motsaathebe.
The constituency’s acting branch chairperson Tony Mogatle denied that the Molale and Motsaathebe deal involved affording Motsaathebe full support in the next primary election. “It is true that both Molale and Motsaathebe agreed on a compromise agreement which allowed Molale to contest the primaries unopposed. I do not remember the branch making any commitments to support Motsaathebe in the next primaries,” he said.
Minister Serame did not respond to questions sent to her by The Botswana Gazette two weeks ago.
Serame as VP?
Meanwhile, other sources in the party believe Minister Serame is amongst the front runners to take over the country’s Vice Presidency from Slumber Tsogwane if he retires ahead of the next general elections. Serame is one of Masisi’s most trusted lieutenants in the cabinet, they say. Masisi appointed her as the first female Minister of Finance in Botswana’s history last year. In addition, Serame is expected to contest for the position of chairperson in the upcoming BDP Women’s Wing Congress.