Botswana: Batswana to Determine Country's Future Direction

Addis Ababa — The imminent constitutional review will be an opportunity for Batswana to determine the future direction of their country, says President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi.

Addressing Batswana living in Addis Ababa at the end of his visit to the Ethiopian capital, Dr Masisi said Batswana would be given a chance to fully participate in the review process.

The President was in Ethiopia for the 33rd ordinary session of the AU heads of state and government summit which ended on Monday.

Pointing out that the review was intended to bind the nation together to make it stronger, Dr Masisi said the exercise could not be undertaken in an emotionally charged atmosphere.

Equally, constitutional review could not be done immediately after elections in which "the extent of external influence was disturbing", he said.

On other issues, President said the ongoing legal hitches strengthened the nation and was a sign of a maturing democracy.

"We need to appreciate that if there are others who feel discomfort, they should be given the chance to settle that discomfort without causing some discomfort to others," he said.

Dr Masisi explained that during the election period, he tried to level the playing field by ensuring that all competing political parties were given coverage.

His messages in the run up to the elections, he said, that he would accept the outcome of the elections as announced by the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC), was always consistent.

He also clarified that the date for elections was not set arbitrarily.

When the date was set, everything, including IEC's readiness, security, training of personnel and participation of civic society among other stakeholders, were taken into consideration, he said. President Masisi said the elections could have been held a little earlier than October 23 but the date was adjusted to cater for such issues.

Source : BOPA

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