Ndaba rallies BMD troops 

SHARE   |   Monday, 07 August 2017   |   By Staff Writer
Ndaba rallies BMD troops 

Ndaba Gaolathe, the leader of a Botswana Movement for Democracy faction, emerged from reclusion on Thursday night to make a passionate plea to his followers to continue fighting for their party on the side of justice. Addressing his followers for the first time since the violent Bobonong congresses, which elected parallel leadership, Ndaba called on his supporters to continue to "fight for our vision. The same great vision of Gomolemo Motswaledi. The same great vision of all fair minded of our people living without jobs, living in poverty". By daybreak on Friday Ndaba Gaolathe was trending in conversations around the country and on social media, giving his followers a renewed hope that his silence has not been in vain. Preaching to a packed hall at Maruapula school, largely dominated by young people, Ndaba borrowed heavily from the Bible, calling for calm in the face of a storm. He said the Biblical Joshua fought in silence, with silence and faith. “He focused, rounded a city, quietly and on the seventh day he and his people shouted. Silence for right passages of time is significant, it is a sign that there is ongoing work, it may not be visible to the eye. It means you understand that everyone will have his or her turn to speak and act.” Unlike most leaders Ndaba is quick to concede mistakes that happened in Bobonong, take responsibility and has personally visited the affected community leaders in the village to apologise. He also apologised to families of members injured in the violent congress at Matshekge school. "To the people of Botswana, I understand just how much aching it brings to your hearts to see before you a dream for a new Botswana melt and how let down you must feel. And for this I hope you will forgive me. Yet despite these austere and seemly bleak circumstances, the hope in me has risen more than it has ever before, that a new Botswana is possible, that a new Botswana is within reach. So I am here not only to apologise but also to tell you that I have an immense sense that something special is happening in and to this nation. There is something stirring," he said.

On the congress in Bobonong, in July, which returned with two parallel sets of leadership committees Ndaba said the BMD has become the skunk of the nation. He decried that circumstances at the BMD have generated confusion, disillusionment, mistrust and doubt about whether the nation can achieve the change that they desire. "Our actions and conduct have represented everything that can go wrong in the democratic experiment. The current impasse at BMD is not a traditional difference of opinion or a contest of ideas or ideology; it is not a traditional competition among leaders for leadership roles. The actual unfolding of events, tactics and behaviour within the BMD has revealed that we have and have had in our midst men and women who at best do not believe in the change that we all say this country needs," he said to a thunderous applause. To his detractors Ndaba said: "The say we are warmongers. Warmongers, no, we are not warmongers. We are warriors of justice. We are gallant foot-soldiers towards a new Botswana. We are warriors of our collective vision and dream. We need to fight for sure, and this war we must fight. But our fight should not be a fight of stones, or of bullets. Neither is it a fight of insults or of accusations. That kind of fight is not ours, we do not belong in it. We fight for a new Botswana. We fight for our vision, the same vision of the Great Gomolemo Motswaledi, the vision of all fair-minded citizens". But he warned that the current situation at the BMD is much deeper than meets the naked eye of a bystander. "The BMD situation is about justice, and I have chosen the side of justice, we have chosen justice. Call me what you wish as some do – a faction leader, a warlord or by whatever name – I am not moving from the side of justice. We choose justice because this is our conviction. We choose justice because there will be no change in this country without a commitment to justice," he said. Reiterating his commitment to regime change to deliver a better Botswana Ndaba said from the side of justice "I am unmoving, I am unbending, I am unshaking, I am unwavering, I am unflinching, I am unchanging". He said without justice Botswana will never be able to offer its best and brightest for political office, to advance the best people forward so that citizens can be spoilt for choice, so they can choose from among men and women of substance who can bring about change. Dr Margaret Nasha applauded Ndaba for his humility, calmness and intelligence even when facing difficult times. She said such characteristics are admirable, even suggesting that Botswana would be prosperous and an economic success if there were about only five Ndabas at Government Enclave.  

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