Botswana’s Opposition Parties File Appeals Over Election Results

Mbongeni Mguni

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Botswana’s main opposition party and the breakaway party of former president Ian Khama are challenging the results of voting in 19 constituencies, a move that could result in the country’s electoral commission calling fresh elections in those districts.

The Umbrella for Democratic Change has filed petitions with the High Court in 16 districts, while Khama’s Botswana Patriotic Front is contesting the results of another three constituencies.

President Mokgweetsi Masisi’s Botswana Democratic Party won last month’s vote securing 38 of 57 seats. A successful court application would require the elections body to recount the ballots in the contested districts or call for another election.

“There were irregularities throughout the elections including people voting twice,” UDC spokesman Moeti Mohwasa said by phone. “We are confident of success in all of them and the evidence we have is compelling.”

The BPF filed its petitions in parliament, according to spokeswoman Roseline Panzirah-Matshome.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mbongeni Mguni in Botswana at mmguni@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Gordon Bell at gbell16@bloomberg.net, Hilton Shone, Alastair Reed

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