Says he will contest primary elections against Arone
The 2014 Botswana Democratic Party BDP parliamentary candidate for Okavango constituency, Mbahahauka Kambimba has dismissed speculations suggesting that there are plans to offer him an Ambassador post in exchange not to contest upcoming BDP primary elections to pave way for the Member of Parliament for Okavango, Bagalatia Arone. “Those are just rumours as I am not going anywhere,” he said, adding that he has submitted him name and is awaiting the vetting process to contest Bulela Ditswe. He declined to discuss his prospects in Bulela Ditswe saying it is against the party rules.
The upcoming BDP elections will be a tight contest that will reignite rivalry between Kambimba and Arone in the race for Okavango constituency in the run-up to the 2019 general elections. Kambimba is a nominated councillor and was appointed chairman of Okavango sub district after losing to Arone in the 2014. Arone, who was standing under the Botswana Congress Party (BCP) ticket won by 6864 votes, while Kambimba got 5473 votes and Vistor Moruti of Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) got 215 votes.
A source close to the party told this publication that Kambimba is viewed as a threat to Arone who has defected from BCP to join the ruling BDP. “Kambimba can win the against Arone. We hear that the party leaders don’t want that and as a results want to offer Mbaha an Ambassador post to pave way for Arone,” a source alleged.
The source further alleged that Arone is the preferred candidate by the party leadership, citing appointment as Minister of Basic Education despite being new to the BDP politics. “It would be embarrassing for a minister to lose primary elections. It would also put the party in bad light, so they are trying to avoid this possible outcome,” said a source.
Kambimba has been active on the ground and has established working structures in both cell and ward committees in the Okavango. The winner between Arone and Kambimba will face the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) candidate Kenny Kapinga who has been unopposed at BCP in the primary elections held last weekend.