‘Mosisili can’t make decisions unilaterally’

‘Mosisili can’t make decisions unilaterally’

Staff Reporter

MASERU – THE Democratic Congress (DC)’s national executive committee will meet tomorrow to discuss leader Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili’s conduct.
What has triggered the meeting is a circular Mosisili has written to constituencies calling a special conference for a special conference to reprimand the committee.
In the following interview DC deputy secretary general Refiloe Litjobo holds nothing back as he lays into Mosisili and explains why the committee has decided to withdraw the party from the coalition government.

What is the NEC’s view on the circular Mosisili has just sent to constituencies calling for a special conference?

I would not say there is a circular because it was written without the NEC’s permission. He has no such powers to do such. He cannot implement such a decision without consulting the NEC. Yet even if he says he has those powers you can see from his letter that he has already concluded that the committee needs to be reprimanded.

This is not procedural. He cannot issue a circular calling a special conference whose purpose is to reprimand the committee. On this one he is in the wrong and he has miscalculated because that is not how things work in the DC.
The leader works with the committee. He cannot make decisions unilaterally. What should have happened is that he should have talked to the committee to call the conference and only when it refuses did he have the power to go ahead.

There was never a time when we had a discussion with him over that matter so he cannot say we should be reprimanded. You should know that the special conference is like the Court of Appeal in this country.
You cannot go to the Court of Appeal unless you have approached the Magistrates’ Courts and the High Court first. Our leader has gone straight to the highest court in the land. He was supposed to have exhausted all internal processes before he jumps to the special conference.

How are you going to respond as the executive committee?

There is a meeting tomorrow afternoon to discuss that issue. We have written him a letter to inform him about that meeting and he has been served. We are going to discuss his conduct as a leader and how his role should be guided by the constitution of the party.
His letter calling for the special conference will be the main subject of that meeting. Mosisili is our leader and we respect him a lot but he has abused his power.

There is absolutely no way he can go to the extent of writing to constituencies calling a special conference. He has not engaged the NEC. He has not instructed the secretary general to call a special conference. It is clear that the leader has not followed procedure.
Such a decision is a clear sign of the calibre of the people around him. Those people say they are advising him but they are killing the party. They have no understanding of the cultural norms of the DC as a party.

Is there a possibility that the NEC might go as far as expelling him?

I cannot say much about that because it is for the NEC to decide tomorrow. But I can only say that anything is possible.
There are decisions to be made.

Already we have decided and announced that the DC has withdrawn from the coalition government. We are open to negotiations with other parties.
Negotiations with the All Basotho Convention started the day we announced that we are pulling out of this coalition government. We have clearly said we are ready to form a grand coalition with other political parties.

We have remained on the crossbenches because we are not going to join anyone but we will be joined. We currently have 22 MPs on the crossbenches but we are working to bring in more. Our target is 47 DC MPs but the main focus is to have all the 120 MPs on our side.

What would you say is the main reason for the infighting?
The key issue that led to this situation is that we want a government that serves the people. A government that serves the people not itself and only those within it. Lesotho faces serious economic problems that this current coalition is unable to solve.

We had thought that after years out of the government we had learned our lessons. We thought we would come back and serve the shareholders of this country, who are Basotho.
We have realised that we need to change the agenda. We cannot continue fighting each other as political parties. This business of calling each other names will not help take this country forward. Look at how countries like Botswana and Swaziland that were below Lesotho have moved ahead.
All this is because we are not leading people in the right way. Everything rises and falls with the leadership.

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