Thursday, 31 October 2019 05:55


Continental and regional observer missions to the 2019 Botswana general elections hailed this year's polls as credible and a fair reflection of the will of the people.

Head of SADC Electoral Observer Mission, Lt. Gen. (Rtd) Dr. SB Moyo and the Head of the African Union Observer Mission, Mrs Jallow Fatoumata, made the observation when briefing members of the press and other stakeholders during the release of the preliminary statements by the international electoral observer missions in Gaborone on Friday.

Addressing the gathering, Dr. Sibusiso Moyo, Zimbabwe's Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, who is the head of the SADC Electoral Observer Mission, lauded the election process for being transparent.

"The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) of Botswana managed the elections efficiently and delivered on the establishment of 2,296 polling stations ahead of the elections." he said.

He added that the atmosphere on Election Day was 'orderly, calm and peaceful' at all polling stations and that IEC officers were professional in the execution of their duties.

"The SADC Electoral Observer Mission observed that the pre-election and voting processes of the 2019 general elections were well organized and conducted in a peaceful and free atmosphere, and that the environment enabled the voters to express themselves in a transparent manner," said Dr SB Moyo.

For her part, head of the AU Electoral Observer Mission to the Botswana general elections, former Vice President of Gambia, Mrs Jallow Fatoumata, also said her team had observed that the electoral process had been credible and fair.

Botswana went for polls on 23 October 2019, a process which saw the ruling party, the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) emerging winner after gaining 38 parliamentary seats out of 57, and its leader automatically becoming the president of the country.

The Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) got 15 seats, while former President Ian Khama’s newly formed Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) got only three seats. The Alliance for Progressives (AP) got one seat.