As Botswana Peoples’ Party (BPP) President Motlatsi Molapisi once again boycotted a scheduled Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) national executive meeting, the opposition party appeared headed for a factional split. Confirmed reports are that Molapisi was last Thursday evening expected to lead a four-man BPP delegation to a UDC meeting at a secluded venue in Gaborone but failed to show up. He was expected to attend the meeting alongside Richard Gudu (BPP national chairperson), Chibuya Kuchwe and Tshepo Makhane (BPP Publicity Secretary). However, it was never to be, sources said. According to informed sources, only Gudu and Kuchwe managed to attend the meeting, leaving some concerned BPP members scurrying for answers as to why Molapisi failed to appear. “It is true that the president did not attend the meeting. And we, as the BPP executive members are yet to be notified of the reasons behind his non-attendance,” confirmed Gudu. According to Gudu, apprehensiveness is growing amongst the members of the BPP family when their leadership continues to fail to attend UDC meeting. “We are not very happy when the leadership of the BPP is not participating in the events of the UDC. It is a fact that there are a number of issues which need to be discussed at the UDC and BPP must be in attendance,” said a seemingly deeply concerned Gudu.
Gudu said the non-attendance of the BPP at UDC events has got the potential of creating serious drawbacks to the evolution of the coalition into a formidable movement that can take on the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) head on. In response to suggestions that he is tearing apart the BPP by not attending to UDC meetings, Molapisi said he has done nothing wrong. Molapisi said his non-attendance to the UDC events is in line with the resolution taken by the BPP at a venue and time he could not divulge. “A resolution was taken that the BPP must not take part on the UDC meetings until the BPP/UDC outstanding issues are resolved,” explained Molapisi, adding that UDC is yet to deal with the issue of constituencies which the BPP requested. Molapisi said Gudu and Kuchwe were not representing the BPP at the UDC meeting. He said the two were representing their own personal interests at the UDC meeting because a resolution was taken not to take part in such gatherings. “They (Gudu and Kuchwe) are not even part of the BPP representatives at the UDC,” said Molapisi, adding that a team to represent the BPP was long appointed and the names of Gudu and Kuchwe do not appear on the list.