With dust having settled in the land feud between government and Balete for Kgale Hill 9-KO Farm, it is predicted that Balete victory will be a downfall of ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) in Bamalete constituency formerly Ramotswa in the upcoming 2024 general elections.
On Tuesday, fearless Kgosi Mosadi Seboko led the Balete towards victory in a landmark case against the Bamalete Land board, which had dragged Balete to court demanding ownership of land.
Court of Appeal (CoA) ruled in favor of Balete, dismissing the government appeal with costs.
Dr Adam Mfundisi, political and administrative studies scholar at University of Botswana (UB) said political backlash will befall BDP opportunists who supported seizure of land against their will.
He said leadership dilemma faced by the BDP politicians was not navigated strategically and the political ramifications are grave, adding that political tsunami await current MP and councillors.
“The tribe was sold a dummy in the 2019 general elections and this led to the tribe voting the people of questionable credentials. In the 2019 general elections, the BDP and its leadership clearly hoodwinked and manipulated the tribe by making false promises that have not been fulfilled,” he said.
He said the court battle between government and Balete will further exacerbate the political woes of the party which appeals to the minds and hearts of the people is weaning or eroded.
“The dark – side of leadership of the BDP is making the party unattractive to the voters especially in urban areas where political consciousness has grown since the 2019 general elections which were the most controversial in the history of Botswana with opposition petitioning outcomes,” said Dr Mfundisi.
Furthermore, Dr Mfundisi has said BDP were heavily defeated in the constituency in the past elections partially because of its political narcissistic behaviour toward the tribe and its leadership.
Briefing the media on Thursday, President Mokgweetsi Masisi said he is happy for Balete victory.
According to Masisi, reports that he interfered with judiciary to influence case outcomes are false.
“Yes I had meeting with Kgosi Mosadi about the land issue and it had nothing to do with influencing the judiciary anyhow. Politically speaking, I wanted Balete to get back their land and I’m very happy that the CoA just like High Court granted them back their land rights. They bought it themselves,” he said.
Moreover, BDP leader said if he had really interfered with the judiciary, Balete would have lost.
“When the government appealed the case, I engaged with the Attorney General when they appealed the high court ruling and he informed me that there were some piece of legislations that he need clarity on them from high court ruling. I hardly speak to the judges,” said Masisi.
Meanwhile, political analyst Kitso Morekisi said Masisi know the pressure that he will face, could have Balete lost the case after he promised government will return the farm to them.
“Masisi few days before 2019 elections told multitudes of Balete that government will return the land to them. That statement changed everything and BDP dethroned opposition. Immense pressure will be now on incumbent Lefoko Moagi, he hardly spoke about the issue,” he said.
Morekisi said it also key for Masisi to be strategic in mending his government ties with Balete, adding that the tribe could use the next elections as weapon to revenge against the ruling party.
The jubilant Kgosi Mosadi after the CoA ruled in their favor said the victory was long overdue.
She told the multitudes of Balete and the media on the sidelines of the court session that her and other Balete tribal leadership have sigh of relief, urging Balete to remain united going forward.
“Our argument has been always that the land belonged to us and the court decision has also affirmed that. It was a difficult journey but with our faith and unity we triumphed,” said elated Kgosi Mosadi.