Renowned Maun based Prophet, Thato Elias of Gates Of Heaven Networks Church has rubbished reports about his interest to join active politics and subsequently run for a political office.
However, information reaching this publication is that the youthful prophet who is reportedly aligned to the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) has declared his interest to contest for a parliamentary seat in Maun East Constituency in the next general elections under the BDP ticket. According to a source close to the prophet, Elias has indicated that time has now come for Christians to also become actively involved in political affairs of their country. It is said that Elias who has a large following in Maun owing to his spiritual status has even received the blessings of other influential BDP members in the constituency.
“There are former councilors and other prominent party activists in Maun East who have already declared their support for him and they have also promised to help campaign for him should he proceed with his intention,” the source claimed.
The source went on to further claim that even some of former BDP members who defected to Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) last year have also expressed their willingness to return back to the ruling party to support the prophet. According to him, the defectors regard Elias as a spiritual man whom they trust can bring a positive change into the political game.
“They believe that the prophet will not be like many other politicians, they regard him as a man of integrity who has already proved himself as true leader,” he said.
The source also added that reports suggesting that former BDP Member of Parliament (MP) for Maun East, Kostantinos Markus might not stand for the next general elections is something that may work to the advantage of the prophet. Markus lost the constituency to the incumbent MP, Goretetse Kekgonegile of the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC). The source further claims that there is an ongoing bid from Elias’ supporters to persuade another BDP member, Gakenosi Mpho who also aspires for the MP position to pave way for the prophet.
The source also believes that Elias’ ongoing social responsibility initiatives which aims to help uplift the Maun community will also contribute to his political campaign. In June last year, the prophet launched his foundation (Saint Elias Foundation) which he revealed it is in a process of building the first ever Geriatric Care Center in Maun that will comprise of skilled and medical care facilities. Elias promised that the construction of the center will soon commence as they have already been granted a go ahead by the relevant authorities.
When reached for a comment, the soft-spoken Elias disputed that he has intentions to join active politics nor contest for a parliamentary seat in Maun East. The prophet noted that the only time he was associated with politics was last year during the elections period when was attending several political events in Maun.
“I was attending those events on official basis as a Chairperson of the Maun Ministers Fraternal but I have since stopped attending such events as a I have handed over that position to another pastor,” the prophet emphasized.