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DC talks end in chaos



Staff Reporter


A meeting to reconcile feuding parties in the Democratic Congress (DC) party ended in chaos last weekend after members of one of the factions stormed out in protest.

The DC national executive committee had invited the two factions, nicknamed Lirurubele (butterflies) and Lithope (maidens), for reconciliation talks in Maseru after weeks of trading insults and accusations over radio stations and on social media platforms.

But the talks failed to take place after members of Lithope started insulting convenors of the meeting.

They then stormed out of the meeting. They are alleged to have vandalised two vehicles belonging to members of the party’s national executive committee (NEC).

The talks were led by MPs Retšelisitsoe Masenyetse and Ndiwuhleli Ndlomose, youth league committee members Lekhotla Matšaba and Tlotliso Masiloane who is the youth league’s deputy secretary.

Others were women’s league committee members ’Maphakiso Moseme, one ’Mammakong and another whose name is not known to thepost. The seven form the task team established by the NEC to reconcile the factions.

Ramahooana Matlosa, who allegedly belongs to the Lithope faction, yesterday said his faction took offence when it realised that Masenyetse was going to chair the meeting.

Matlosa also said they were also not happy that Ndlomose and Matšaba were part of the task team.

“Our main complaint was that Masenyetse, Ndlomose and these youths were the people we were complaining about but now they were to be the referees,” Matlosa said.

“They did not qualify to be there as referees because they were part of our squabbles and therefore they were interested parties in the whole matter”.

“We did not have any problem with ’Mammakong and these other ladies from the women’s league because we did not have them on record squabbling with any faction over any radio station or on Facebook,” he said.

Matlosa also said what irked them was that according to their invitation letters, party leader Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili and the rest of the party’s leadership would be there “but to our dismay we only found these people we are complaining about”.

“The party leader, leaders of the women’s league, youth league and leaders of the provinces in South Africa were to be there but they were not,” he said.

Matlosa said they also could not sit in the meeting because Masenyetse had posted a comment on his Facebook account which they interpreted as insulting the First Lady ’Mathato Mosisili.

“So, this man Masenyetse is absolutely not qualified to be a referee in the talks because he is one of the people who should join us in the accusation for squabbling on air about the party’s internal matters,” he said.

This paper could not independently verify if Masenyetse had posted such a comment on his wall.

Efforts to contact Masenyetse were not successful last night.

Matlosa said contrary to an agreement that people who traded affronts on air would be the ones called to the meeting, the Lirurubele faction “brought those whose voices were never heard on radio accusing anybody”.

“Some of them I wonder if they have ever seen the inside of a studio,” he said.

“As for us, we went there as people who used to argue and accused other party members over the radios and in social media.”

“As to what they wanted to create I don’t know. All I can say is that the people who were supposed to be brought before the committee were the ones who formed the committee. Those who have nothing to do with this were the ones who were to appear before this committee.”

DC’s general secretary, Ralechate ’Mokose, told a press conference yesterday that the national executive committee is planning to organise another meeting where both sides will have a chance to state their grievances.

“I don’t know what they were going to say or what they will say. People say many things and the same people often complain about me saying I am biased,” ’Mokose said.

He said what he knew about the people who were to oversee the talks “were the people selected by the party members from the constituencies to do this job”.

“If people are dissatisfied they will be given a chance to say their feelings so that any differences can be ironed out and peace kept for everybody,” he said.

Thuso Litjobo Democratic Congress youth league president

Thuso Litjobo Democratic Congress youth league president

’Mokose’s deputy, Refiloe Litjobo, said the executive committee “is still in control of things and there is high hope that the disputes between the two sides will be solved amicably”.

Thuso Litjobo, who is the youth league’s president, said if things get out of hand and there is no other alternative to solve the matter “disciplinary action will be the last resort”.

Barely two weeks ago the factions fought each other at another meeting.

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