The outspoken Member of Parliament for Tonota Pono Moatlhodi popularly known as Botate has this week fired potshots to Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) legislators accusing President Mokgweetsi Masisi for taking advantage of the kgotla system to use it as campaigning ground.
Moatlhodi when responding to the State of Nation Address (SONA) at parliament punched holes on president Masisi and his former cabinet crew to campaign in Kgotla defying culture.
He said he observed that president Masisi and BDP were desperate to the extent of taking advantage of the kgotla to garner votes hiding behind the concept of consulting the nation.
The maverick Tonota legislator said he is very embarrassed by the conduct of Masisi while campaigning in the kgotla across the country to be a pure abuse and pollution of the Kgotla.
“There has been the so called consultation and I don’t know who said the current regime is the only consultative one. The elections have passed and I am surprised now that president is no longer consulting the nation as it has been elections. It was political gimmick, “stressed Botate.
Moatlhodi maintains that the Kgotla is a very holy place and should be treated as sacred hence urging politicians who sometimes turn desperate to use the kgotla for own political expediency.
Masisi series of consultative kgotla meetings prior to the elections attracted a groundswell of criticism from the opposition while the argument was leader of opposition wasn’t allowed to.
The contention by some was that Masisi was using kgotla as ploy to lure voters for his party’s parliamentary candidates more especially in the Southern part as Khama was strong in North.
Masisi’s predecessor Ian Khama has once faced a revolt from Bangwaketse last year during his farewell Kgotla meetings to the nation as he cajoled and recruited former Kanye MP in Kgotla.
Khama while bidding Bangwaketse farewell rubbed them the wrong way making advances to former Kanye South Member of Parliament Abram Kesupile courting him to rejoin the BDP.
In his address SKI conceded it is not allowed to speak politics in kgotla system but he could not contain his eagerness to publicly recruit Kesupile saying he wants him back home at ruling BDP.
For some Bangwaketse royals and tribesmen, Khama’s politicking in their main kgotla was sign of disrespect hence insisting that answers demanded for Khama to account for his weir actions.
University of Botswana (UB) political science lecturer Mokaloba Mokolaba has observed that Kgotla politics has been rampant of recent culminated more by Dikgosi’s political alignments.
He said the emerging Kgotla politics must be heavily condemned noting that it is high time the Leader of Opposition (LOO) be given the platform to address the kgotla meetings on his role.
“The argument whether Masisi took the advantage of kgotla to campaign is true or not, kgotla and politics must be separated and this could be clipping Bogosi wings to be apolitical. LOO is equivalent to the minister and it’s high time he is given the respect LOO deserves,” he added.