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Minister, Balopi asked to fire rebellious Councillors

Publishing Date : 11 February, 2019

Author : KETUMILE RAMATITI

Since the 14th of December last year, Central District Council (CDC) full meetings have turned into boardroom brawls pitting Chairperson Peter Williams against councillors who are deemed “ungovernable and working against the government of the day.”


This, according to the information presented to this publication, emanates from tussle over the powers of attorney by the council. Councillors say it should be their responsibility to appoint a lawyer to represent them in any issue that needs a legal representation. On the other hand the chairperson, Williams is of the view that the council Secretary be given unlimited powers of attorney. The antagonists of Council Secretary, given those powers, argue that it would be a breeding space for corrupt activities which the council has zero tolerance for.


In fact they have suggested that after every quarter they appoint legal mind to assist them as that way it would be easy to avoid unethical exploits. While the matter was decided through voting by the councillors with most of them agreeing that the power of attorney is their sole responsibility, Weekendpost understands that the chairperson went ahead and gave Secretary those powers. “He then reversed the decision saying as the Chairperson he has the powers to decide whether it should be councillors or Secretary,” said Mpho Kooreme who is vocal and against the decision.


“We argued that the power of attorney should be the sole responsibility of the council and not that of the Secretary but the Chairperson, believed that Secretary be given those,” said another councillor Thatayaone Kehitile. This was a turning point as the councillors felt undermined and decided to storm out of the meeting, leaving council limping without forming quorum. The CDC is one of the largest in the country consisting of 174 councillors with 50+1 percent enough for council business to go on.


The rebellion by the councillors saw the Chairperson penning two letters; one to Minister of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), Frans Van Der Westhuizen and the other to BDP Secretary General, Mpho Balopi to take action with possibility of firing them.
The letter is said to be highlighting that “the councillors make council ungovernable and are working against the government of the day.”


“Surprisingly when we walked out we were many but now the letters have been addressed to the four of us. We are also penning our letters to both the Minister and the party SG because we don’t know whether they have responded to his,” one of the victimised councillor Kooreme said in an interview. All the four councillors who were also booted out of the Wednesday session are BDP members (Gabagopolwe Sebele, Sylvester Masweu, Kooreme and Bolesitswe).


Sources from the Serowe based headquarters say the four have been ‘victimised’ because they have been leading the matter to have powers of attorney as the responsibility of the councillors. “We are surprised as to how come he wrote to the party because whatever happened was under the official cap of council not politically. What was he going to do if it was members from the opposite aisle,” said another councillor who is concerned by turn-out of events.


This week a plan was hatched to slap Williams with a motion of no confidence but it never saw the light of the day as kingpins were kicked out of the chambers. Contacted to comment on the matter, Williams said he should be given time as the matter is yet to be resolved. “I won’t say anything because for now we are still dealing with the matter and maybe if you can check on me tomorrow,” he said.


As of Thursday all party caucus also took hours to put the matter to bed as the councillors suggested that the Secretary be given the powers on temporary basis, looking at the cases to be presented before the courts. However this publication is reliably informed that after serious consultations resulting in voting, it has been decided that the Secretary be given powers on three months basis subject to assessment.

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