Botswana’s main opposition party Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) is not taking chances when it comes to the security of its leaders, it has disclosed. The UDC leaders have since 2014 revealed that there were plans by security agents to assassinate them and the issue was exacerbated by the death of BMD President Gomolemo Motswaledi who died in a car on his way from South Africa. Most UDC members believed he was assassinated and investigations were instituted. While the police cleared any suspicions on the cause of his death, the party is yet to release a report on the outcome of their investigations.
Recently they have been allegations that the Secretary General of UDC, Ndaba Gaolathe’s life was in danger. The MP for Mogoditshane Sedirwa Kgoroba first made the claims on the social media, saying that they were given a tip off by a reliable source. In his post Kgoroba revealed that they were warned about the plan to assassinate Gomolemo Motswaledi and took it lightly only for them to regret. Gaolathe, who is also the Member of Parliament for Gaborone Bonnington South, was a close friend to the late former Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) President Motswaledi who died in a car accident in 2014.
UDC is said to have engaged bodyguards even at his residential place and a chauffeur to ensure that his safety is not compromised in any way. Ahead of the 2014 general elections Gabane/Mmankgodi MP Major General Pius Mokgware revealed that they were plans to assassinate him and other UDC influential leaders. The statement was dismissed by government only for Mokgware to repeat it recently when a man who claimed to be a former hit man with Directorate of Intelligence Services (DIS) revealed that he was hired to kill the former commander of ground forces.
In April 2014 five assailants broke into the house of Boko in Tlokweng and one of them was arrested and the Leader of Opposition bodyguard Elliot Moshoke said at the time that they received intelligence information that some people wanted to eliminate Boko. In September of the same year the house of MP for Francistown South Wynter Mmolotsi was also broken into while he was sleeping with his family. He said that valuable goods were stolen including his mobile phones. UDC President Duma Boko confirmed that they were aware of a plot to assassinate the BMD President and they have since beefed up his security. Boko, who did not elaborate further, said that they take the security of Gaolathe and other UDC leaders seriously hence they didn’t take the threats lightly.
UDC has been under immense pressure from all quarters to release the report on the cause of death of Motswaledi which they have said that they believe it was an assassination. Answering a question on the report, UDC leader Boko said that the public has legitimate right to know about the report but said that the approach was wrong. Recently some Botswana Congress Party (BCP) leaders especially the Youth League and former party President Gilson Saleshando demanded the UDC to release the report to show their seriousness about cooperation. Boko said that they will engage BCP leaders on the report and the status of their investigations. He said the investigations on the death of their leader is extremely sensitive matter and is a delicate and engaging process.