• Chairman endorses Masisi, Ntuane
As the race to the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) congress enters the final lap, party branches are finalising election of their committees and delegates who will be instrumental in the election of the party central committee in Mmadinare in July.
The Ngami branch in north western region have elected Kabo Kurusa as its branch chairperson. At 32, Kurusa is among the youngest people to hold such a big position within BDP structures and in the history of the Ngami branch. Currently Kurusa and two other young people are the only youth in the committee. The rest of the committee members are aged over 40.
Having cut his career in politics in the capital city Gaborone, Kurusa decided to return back home prior to the 2014 general elections and worked in the team that delivered the constituency back to the ruling party, after Thato Kwerepe beat Taolo Habano of the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) with a slim margin. Now that his commitment to the party has been proven and the constituents have endorsed him, Kurusa has already hit the ground running and vows to bring a spotlight to the troubles of his region, which has remained among the most undeveloped in the country. As a youthful politician Kurusa says, he will be bringing in a lot of new ideas that are not only innovative but influenced by the plight of Ngami constituents.
But Kurusa is coming in at a time when the ruling party is preparing for one of the most contested central committee elections. Although he could not disclose whether his branch had indorsed any candidate as is against party policy and unconstitutional to do so, he indicates that though all candidates had trekked through his region canvassing for votes recently. For the chairperson position Vice President Mokgweetsi Masisi, former Minister of Defence, Justice and Security Ramadeluka Seretse and former Ambassador to the United States Tebelelo Seretse had caught the branch's attention. “They came out clear and were articulate in their presentations while other candidates were incoherent,” said Kurusa.
For the Secretary General position however Kurusa points out that both Botsalo Ntuane and Gaotlhaetse Matlhabaphiri sold themselves well for the position and he was personally impressed with both.
Kurusa recently stirred controversy when he posted on his facebook page pledging support for Masisi and Ntuane. Quizzed about this, Kurusa said he posted in his personal capacity and does not by any means reflect the position of Ngami region. “It was not the official position of the region and I do not think it could influence anyone in my committee to follow suit, delegates are all going to use their private convictions to vote for their preferred candidate,” he said.
Kurusa’s term as the Ngami branch chairperson comes to end in 2017 and he says only time will tell whether he will contest again. He beat Papadi Batatsi by 40 votes to 27.