10. Conclusion

This booklet has raised a number of relevant issues, which may be valuable to political representatives and others in positions of leadership in Botswana. Several techniques and material were covered and tips

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given. At the end of the day an effective representative is understood to be a hard worker, researcher and one who has a good understanding of the challenges and constraints before him/her. The booklet is not exhaustive

and it can never be. It is a guide that gives just one perspective. It should, however, assist those keen to learn more to identify additional sources of information on this topic.


Several fictitious case studies were written and presented to participants to illustrate extreme cases of ineffective representation. Due to time constraints it was not possible to discuss more of these especially on the case of a successful representative.

The case of Mr. Legodi

Mr Legodi was elected to council for Party BFD in 1974. Previously he was the headman of the main village, which now forms part of his council ward. Mr. Legodi is married with four children aged between 19 and 38 years. Mr. Legodi is well known to be both a heavy drinker and for having several girlfriends in the ward. One day two of his girlfriends who are also members of the Village Development Committee started fighting in a meeting which was attended by the chief of the village, Mr Legodi, himself as the councillor and other members of the VDC.


  1. If Mr. Legodi were your council representative what would you do after the event?
  2. What advise would you give your party if Mr. Legodi belonged to it?
  3. What do you see as Mr. Legodi's main personal problems - does

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    drinking, having girlfriends and having been a headman constitute a problem?

  1. What do you think accounts for Mr. Legodi's continued electoral success?

This case generated a long and interesting discussion on the general behaviour of political representatives. The lessons here were that Mr. Legodi is a person who undermines his authority, abusive of his position, bringing his party's name into disrepute and generally projecting a negative image of politicians. He can not therefore be effective as a leader.

Mrs. Mosilwane's case

Mrs Mosilwane is a Member of Parliament for Sediba constituency. She has been MP for the past 10 years. She has a large business and residential houses in a town 30km from her constituency. She spends more time in her business and in the past two years she held only three poorly attended kgotla meetings in her constituency. She blames her councillors for not doing their work. She occasionally invites them to her town house where she entertains them with drinks. On three continuos meetings at her house Mr. Kabelo, an influential councillor in her constituency did not turn up. She has began to suspect that Mr. Kabelo wants to challenge her in the coming elections.


  1. Is Mrs Mosilwane an effective representative? Give reasons for your answer.
  2. Is Kabelo wrong not to come to the MP's house?
  3. What advise would you give to both Kabelo and the MP?
  4. What should the Central Committee of the MP's Party do?
  5. Should councillors stop going to meetings at the MP's house?

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The participants dismissed Mrs Mosilwane as an ineffective representative who does not separate her family business from her job as a representative of the people. They said she should stay in the constituency and work with her councillors, chiefs, other groups and attend funerals, etc. They absolved Kabelo and said other councillors should refuse to discuss political business in the family environment especially during drinking. In any case it is Kabelo's democratic right to decline offers at Mrs Mosilwane's house or even stand against her.

The case of Mr. and Mrs. Wilson

Mr. and Mrs. Wilson are Councillors of two different Parties. They were successfully elected councillors in the last elections in different wards. They are both popular and effective in their wards. However, they have problems in their parties because each is suspected to be spying on the other party. They have also started having suspicions of each others' work. Problems always arise when their party colleagues come to visit their house for consultation or the ward members for help. Mr. Wilson has decided that if Mrs Wilson does not join his party she should resign from her party and stay at the family business. Otherwise...?


  1. What advise will you give to the couple?
  2. What would you do if you were Mrs Wilson?
  3. What would you tell your party to assure them that you are not spying on them?

This case too generated a long discussion. Many participants rightly noted that Mrs Wilson should remain in politics and in her party, that she should not allow herself to be intimidated with divorce, that family members should have the right to join a party of their choice, and further that family and party members should learn to be tolerant. This case depicts typical practical problems that women politicians face in real life.

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Crick, B., Keynote Speech: On Democracy, in Holm, J. and Molutsi, P., (eds.), (1989), Democracy in Botswana (Macmillan, Botswana).

Edge, W. and Lekorwe, M. (eds.), (1998), Botswana, Politics and Society (J.L. van Schaik, Pretoria, South Africa).

Holm, I. and Molutsi, P. (eds.), (1989), Democracy in Botswana (Macmillan, Botswana).

Markowitz, I., (1977), Power and Class in Africa (Eaglewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall)

Mayo, H.B. (1960), An Introduction to Democratic Theory (Oxford University Press, New York).

© Friedrich Ebert Stiftung | technical support | net edition fes-library | Juni 1999

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