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Botswana readies for 2014 elections

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Though President Lt Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama is yet to issue a writ of elections, Batswana have reason to believe that they would go for the 11th general elections in October next year, Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) secretary, Mr Gabriel Seeletso has said.

Speaking during party liaison committee and political parties’ consultation meeting on August 11, Mr Seeletso said the President had previously committed himself not to deviate from the norm of holding general elections in October. As a result, Mr Seeletso urged political parties and faith-based organisations to encourage Batswana to register for the 2014 elections in large numbers.

Registration is scheduled for October 4-27 this year and it would be done from 9am to 6pm on weekdays and from 9am to 2pm on weekends at designated polling stations. The IEC secretary said the times were meant to cater for everyone.

There would also be supplementary registrations in March and June next year. He also appealed to all parties to put aside their party colours and encourage eligible voters to register in large numbers. He encouraged parties to educate their members on the importance of voting.

He said because politicians were not guaranteed votes from those following them at the moment, it was important that they urged every eligible Motswana to register. He further encouraged Batswana to ensure that their national identity cards (Omang) were in use.

Mr Seeletso noted that about 1.4 million Batswana had Omang and about 1 000 200 were eligible to vote. In Kgalagadi District alone, Mr Seeletso said there were about 4 713 people with expired Omang cards, 1 694  would expire this year while 1 544 would expire next year.

As a result, the IEC secretary appealed to party members to encourage Batswana to renew their Omang cards, highlighting that Omang could be renewed even when left with 11 months. Ends

Source : BOPA

Author : Manowe Motsaathebe

Location : TSABONG

Event : Consultation meeting

Date : Aug 14 Wed,2013