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Tawana consults tribe on successor endorsement

Publishing Date : 12 August, 2019


Paramount Chief of Batwana Kgosi Tawana Moremi II will next month call a lebatla at Kgotla Kgolo in Maun to seek mandate on endorsement for a political successor in the coming 2019 General Elections.

Tawana completes his second five-year term as Member of Parliament for Maun West constituency where he registered a resounding margin befitting of a paramount chief in 2009 and 2014 elections. In the local Setswana setting and context, the institution of bogosi (chieftainship) has become very influential and a crucial power player in the local polity. Tawana told WeekendPost that: “as you know, I am completing my five-year term this week. Then I will immediately be travelling to Maun to meet with the contestants who want to succeed me.”

He continued: “I will sit with all those people, all those candidates, and find which is which and who I can support.” If they need my support I will do it publicly, Tawana stressed. According to Tawana, he has not been following their campaigns and so he does not know where they are. So, he said, since he does not know what is in it for him, he has to sit with them and take a position. “But I say of today, I don’t know which one to support.”

The Batawana paramount chief emphasised that “let me get to home base first. So I know who is doing what and what are their story is. After that I will come up with a position.” Maun West constituency has so far attracted three names being Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) Dumelang Saleshando, who lost Gaborone Central in 2014 to Dr Phenyo Butale of the then UDC, now Alliance for Progressives (AP).

The other contestant is BDP’s Reaboka Mbulawa, a one-time loser to Tawana who is trying his luck for the second time as well in the area, and lastly the Alliance for Progressive’s (AP) Moalosi Sebati the first timer. In 2014 National Elections, Tawana won Maun West representing UDC with a whopping 7271, followed by 5335 votes cast for Botswana Democratic Party (BDP)’s Reaboka Mbulawa. George Lubinda of Botswana Congress Party (BCP) came last with 2359.

Prior to that, in 2009 General Elections, Tawana then standing in for ruling BDP also emerged triumphant with a victory margin of 2,496 votes. But parliament and politics have proved over the two terms for Tawana not to be as ingenious as he had thought, the move which saw him eventually announcing earlier this year that he will not seek re-election in the upcoming 2019 general elections – paving way for others.  

In his stint in politics, Kgosi Tawana joined the BDP and later in 2011 defected to its splinter party, Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) and subsequently contesting the 2014 general elections under the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) banner.
Meanwhile, Kgosi Tawana has an ongoing battle with government over the ownership of Moremi Game reserve which he wants the community to benefit from.



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