Botswana opposition leaders face poll ban amid alleged registration scam

APA-Gaborone (Botswana)

Botswana’s forthcoming general elections were thrown into turmoil on Friday after some activists accused the main opposition leader and another politician of violating the electoral code by providing false information during the registration process.

The activists accuse main opposition Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) leader Duma Boko and his Alliance for Progressives counterpart Ndaba Gaolathe of registering as voters using addresses in areas where they do not stay.

According Botswana’s electoral law, every eligible voter must register and vote using a physical address that is his or her principal address.

The activists on Friday petitioned the court demanding an order disqualifying the two men from contesting set for October this year.

They argued that the actions by Boko and Gaolathe were in violation to the country’s Electoral Act.

The two opposition leaders have registered as parliamentary candidates for Gaborone Bonnington North and Gaborone Bonnington South respectively which are constituencies in the capital Gaborone.

The complainants’ lawyer Sydney Pilane argued that Boko, who is the leader of the opposition in parliament, and Gaolathe should be struck off the voters roll because they allegedly used residential addresses that are not their principal residences.

The case was postponed to June 15.


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