It is not in my habit to respond to each and every fallacy carried in the newspapers, but for the matter in issue, my conscience could not allow me to remain silent. On the 13th April 2018, at page 8, the Guardian Newspaper carried a story which has false statement about me and the Constitution of the BNF. The story alleges that there are two factions in the Central Committee led by President Boko and his Vice-President, Dr Dibeela. The informer misleadingly divided the Central Committee (CC) into two camps and started to place comrades according to the informer’s handlers’ instruction. The informer says Comrade “Mohwasa, Mooketsi, Kwenantle and Hunyepa are in Boko’s corner and the remaining 12 members are with Dr Dibeela”. The informer also says “Dr Dibeela’s faction is planning advocate Boko’s downfall as it pushes for a special congress”.
From the onset, I wish to state that, I am aware of the informer. In fact, there are many informers who are under DIS payroll. I also wish to state that these informers have an agenda against Comrade Dibeela and the agenda started long back. In May 2017, these DIS agents went to town and spread false rumours that comrade Dibeela and Noah Salakae were planning to topple comrade Boko. I confronted the two comrades and they denied it. When that falsity could not stick, these informers changed tact and said comrades Dibeela and Noah Salakae would be defecting to Alliance for Progressives. When that lie failed they changed tact and said 12 members belong to comrade Dibeela’s faction.
I want to declare it upfront that I do not belong to any faction. I a member of the BNF and belong to the BNF. I have been a member of the BNF for thirty (30) years. I did not join BNF to ululate lies and character assassination but to combat any mutilation of BNF policies, principles and Constitution. I did not join it for financial gains. When I engage in debates I do not do so to appease DIS and its agents or quislings; I do engage in order to uphold the BNF Constitution and its values.
It is a lie that in our Central Committee meetings some comrades were divided according to the imagined two camps. In the recent Central Committee meeting, all issues were discussed over and over again, until comrades unanimously agreed on issues under discussions. None of the comrades ever declared that he or she was in Boko’s or Dibeela’s corner.
It is also a lie that the Central Committee was commanded not to discuss items brought forward by members. There is no provision in the Constitution of the BNF which says members of the CC take instructions from comrade Boko or Dibeela. Your informer forgot to tell you that members write articles, submit them to the Secretary General for circulation to other members and the said articles constitute agenda items. There is nowhere, CC members could have been prohibited from contributing agenda items because the agenda is adopted by CC members. This practice has been utilized under Dr Koma and comrade Moupo. In the case of Reverend Thomas Kathata Mhale v Duma Boko & 3 Others, Case No. CACGB-153-13 (unreported) at paragraph 27, Kirby JP held thus; “The members of a voluntary association are free to take any resolutions or to embark upon any courses of action which are not forbidden expressly or by implication either by the law, in the national sense, or by the Constitution of their association or party, in the contractual sense. In the case of a political party in particular, there will be many and diverse processes and courses of action which are not normally mentioned in their Constitutions. Examples are political alliances, election boycotts, agreements not to compete for particular seats and parliamentary coalitions”.
Your informer failed to point it out that in terms of section 12.5.1 of the BNF Constitution, the Central committee shall provide the overall political leadership of the BNF. Sir, the DIS quislings failed to point out to you that the Central Committee is the second highest organ of the BNF after the National Congress. Justice Lesetedi (now Justice of Appeal) in Magama v Mahommed Khan and 3 Others Case No. MAHLB-000403-08 (unreported) at paragraph 4 thereof opined thus;“In terms of Article 10 of the BNF’s Constitution, there are various organisational structures for managing the BNF’s affairs starting with the Cell Committee at the very bottom and the National Congress at the apex. Just below the National Congress is the Central Committee. The powers and functions of each structure are outlined in the Constitution”.
In Thuso Mogorosi & 3 Others v BNF and Duma G. Boko, case no. MAHFT-000134-10 (unreported) at paragraph 10, Justice Chinhengo (as he then was) agreed with Justice Lesetedi and opine thus; “Clause 10 sets out the hierarchy of the organs of the BNF. The National Congress is the highest organ of the Party, followed by the Central Committee (the CC), then the Executive Committee and so on down to the Cell Committee”.
I have gone to great length in explaining the Constitution of the BNF for the benefit of the general public to understand the powers and functions of each organ of the BNF. The BNF does not operate like the BDP where its President, is Alfa and Omega. Like comrade Secretary General, Moeti Mohwasa, cautioned journalists that the BNF does not have a structure called Presidency and the public must familiarise itself with the Constitution of the BNF, especially media practitioners who are fed lies by DIS agents. To that end, comrade Boko or Dibeela do not have power to command the Central Committee on what items to include or not to include in the agenda. Yes, if one is interested in a particular item that is in the agenda and that comrade is not available, there is nothing wrong to request that such an item be deferred to the next CC for his or her input. But that cannot be termed as commanding the CC.
All BNF members must have the Constitution of the party and O.K. Menyatso’s paper authored in 1985 which covers a lot about the history of the BNF, principle of collective leadership, the masses line, guarding against opportunism (careerism), criticism and self-criticism, discipline and freedom of discussion and unity of action. Comrade Menyatso rhetorically stated the democratic principle that governs BNF structures from Cell Committee to Central Committee meetings thus; “Would there be any justification for excessive power concentrated in the hands of an individual party official –No! because putting the leadership above control by the collective has the tendency to brood within the party’s top hierarchy bureaucratic tendencies incompatible with the organizational practice of collectivism in decision-making and accountability”.
Comrade Menyatso emphasised the principle of collective leadership by painting a disciplinary picture of what a progressive party like the BNF should do to attain unity and stability. He said the most conventional norms of disciplinary conduct observable to all progressive parties are: The individual being subordinate to the party; The minority being subordinate to the majority; The lower levels of party organs being subordinate to higher organs; The entire membership being subordinate to the Central Committee between National Congresses.
The above principles are enshrined in the BNF Constitution, especially Article 2.3, 5.1.4, 10, 12.5.1, 12.5.6 and 13.10 of the Constitution. Comrade Moupo in his book entitled Introduction to Party Organisation (2000:6) eloquently states thus; “A progressive party must always strive to steadfastly uphold the principle of collective leadership which entails regular consultation, shared responsibility and coordination among various layers of the leadership”.
In light of the above explanation, it is a fallacy to think that the Central Committee of the BNF operates on commandism. It is also a fallacy to say members of the Central Committee are divided into two camps. We debate issues at BNF CC not individuals. The BNF upholds the principle of contestation of ideas. Comrade Boko recently encouraged BNF members at Moshupa leadership forum to get used to the principles of contestation of ideas. I urge journalists to be vigilant of DIS operatives who are fond of planting false stories targeting other comrades.
I call upon BNF members to disregard baseless stories planted by faceless sources who are on DIS payroll. Journalists are not a problem. The problem is those of us who have an agenda to destroy other comrades by giving journalists false stories. Journalists should also go an extra mile of verifying information given to them by paid mercenaries.