The 2019 Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) Parliamentary candidate for Goodhope/Mabule, Dr Patrick Molotsi, says he is confident that the opposition coalition will retain the constituency in next year's much anticipated general elections against the Botswana Democratic Party's (BDP) Eric Molale.
Speaking to The Patriot on Sunday on Wednesday Dr Molotsi said the UDC currently commands a huge following and visibility in the constituency as shown by back to back victories against BDP candidates in 2014 general elections and a subsequent by-election in 2015 when James Mathokgwane walloped Kitso Mokaila and later Kgosi Lotlaamoreng defeating Molale by 6,152 votes against 4,372 for the latter, respectively. He said the UDC stands a good opportunity to seal victory against the BDP, which he said has lost support of Barolong due to failure to deliver promises to the constituents during the time when the constituency was under the BDP during Mokaila's tenure as MP.
"We are looking forward to retaining the constituency and continue UDC's hoodoo against Molale and BDP. I am confident that we will do well in next year elections and not only in this constituency alone. The coalition continues emerging stronger time and again," he charged.
Dr Molotsi decried that the constituency remains one of the underdeveloped and marred by challenges such as shortage of water, residential land and high levels of poverty and unemployment amongst the youth. He accused the BDP government of ignoring the plight of the people in the constituency, and resorting to playing mind games with its failed and impoverishing programs. "UDC advocates for better living conditions for Batswana and poverty levels in this constituency is worrisome. Does the government disadvantage this constituency because it is under opposition, nobody knows, but Molale's government has failed. He too, has also failed the constituency he was born and bred in despite being a cabinet minister. He really should have done something to turn the tide," he said.
Kgosi Lotlaamoreng's factor
Dr Molotsi, an educationist and former Chief Executive Officer of Human Resource Development Council (HRDC) revealed that he has been working closely with the incumbent MP and Barolong Paramount Kgosi Lotlaamoreng who recently handed him the baton to contest the Parliamentary seat through the Botswana Nationa Front (BNF) ticket under the UDC coalition.
He said Kgosi Lotlaamoreng presented him to the constituents and UDC followers in a star rally held on December 02, where the chief declared officially to the constituents that he will not be contesting 2019 general elections. He also rallied his subjects to support Dr Molotsi's candidature. "Our Kgosikgolo and MP believes he has done his part. I am happy and proud to take and lead the constituency going forward. However, taking over from Kgosi Lotlamoreng to contest doesn't mean that the race is over at all. No, we will still remain focused and cautious," he quipped.
Dr Molotsi dismissed allegations that he was roped in to represent the party through preferential selection from the party leadership or based his closeness to Kgosi Lotlaamoreng. He said instead, a normal vetting process was followed. He revealed that he has been a long time serving member of the BNF and as such his credentials cannot be questioned. His candidacy is legitimate, he argues.
He revealed that when names were submitted for showing interest to contest the party primary elections no other candidate showed interest for the Parliamentary seat, hence the reason he was unopposed. Consequently, no primary elections were held in the constituency.