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Khama: We don’t want Botswana to become another Zimbabwe

Former Botswana President Ian Khama said if the opposition won its challenge of the October election results, his former party Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) would lose power.

Former Botswana President Ian Khama during a press conference in Johannesburg on 12 December 2019. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Former Botswana President Ian Khama said if the opposition won its challenge of the October election results, his former party Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) would lose power.

Khama has been in South Africa to set the record straight on serious allegations of illicit flows and terrorism and he weighed in on processes since the polls.

He resigned from the BDP and backed and the Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF), making it no secret that he wanted to unseat his successor Mokgweetsi Masisi through the ballot.

Masisi was declared the winner of the Botswana elections but Khama is still backing the parties who want him out.
The Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) and BPF filed last-minute petitions to challenge the outcome and South African NGO Forensics for Justice said whistleblowers came forward with evidence of vote-rigging.

“As the BPF, we are depositing a letter to have a full and independent audit of the election. There have been so many petitions. If things went wrong, it mustn’t become a culture. We don't want to become another Zimbabwe under Mugabe where elections are being challenged when they are held.”

Khama said if the opposition wins the challenge, Masisi will lose.

“The majority of the petitions are from the largest opposition party. They put in 13. If they succeed, the UDC would assume governance and not the BDP.”

Khama has been criticised for refusing to go quietly, but he maintains he was forced out of retirement by what has happened.

The BDP has denied the rigging allegations.

WATCH: Khama: Ramaphosa will solve Eskom issues

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