Hambira gets a lifeline

Specially nominated Gaborone City councillor, Reverend Rupert Hambira, received a lifeline this week, as there are higher chances of Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) ordering a rerun of the Bulela Ditswe primary election for the Gaborone Central constituency.

This follows the revelation that at least nine civil servants voted while another civil servant was allegedly used as a polling agent for the winner at Gaborone Central‘s Government ward in a constituency where the winner, Kgomotso Mogami, had outclassed Hambira by just three votes.

Hambira had contested the election for the constituency together with three others – Lebogang Mosope, Tumisang Heily and the winner,  Mogami who registered 283 votes against Hambira’s 280.

Although he was unhappy that he lost with a very close margin, he nevertheless did not bother to appeal to the Gaborone Committee. However, on Sunday he learnt that civil servants had voted despite being barred from doing so by the party rules. The revelation surfaced when the Special Committee appointed to hear the appeals briefly met with the Gaborone Regional Committee before postponing their hearing to tomorrow. The Committee postponed the elections in order to give all concerned parties time to respond or make submissions in writing.

The Gaborone Regional Committee recommended a rerun of the Gaborone Central constituency basing its decision on Section 9 F of the Bulela Ditswe rules and regulations.

The committee’s decision followed an appeal filed by Mosope. In his appeal Mosope had brought evidence that the nine civil servants had voted, something that Hambira was not aware of until Sunday at Tsholetsa House where he had come as an interested party.

The Gaborone Region had a total 24 appeals, but thus far only five have indicated their availability to contest the results. The regional committee had dismissed appeals of the Bonnington North Constituency filed by Robert Molefhabangwe and Reverend Benny Sterglin and endorsed Robert Masitara as the winner. However, the two have appealed to the Special Committee and will be heard tomorrow.