MASERU – The Alliance for Democrats seems to be at war with itself and hardly a day passes by without top officials publicly slinging mud at each other. The contentious decision to dissolve the AD national youth committee, after its former president Thuso Litjobo graduated to the National Executive Committee (NEC) as its spokesperson seems to have aggravated the divisions.
Last week Litjobo told Public Eye that the decision to disband the committee was unanimously reached by the youth executive committee, while also strongly denying accusations that he was behind its dissolution. This has left some of its members fuming and is seemingly creating consternation in the AD. This week, Letuka Chafotsa, the former interim secretarygeneral of the dissolved committee, lashed out at Litjobo for allegedly engineering his committee’s dissolution, blaming him for fanning the conflict and worsening woes besetting AD. Below are excerpts from his interview with Public Eye’s BONGIWE ZIHLANGU:
Public Eye (P.E): Last week the interim AD youth committee was unanimously dissolved, with the official line being that conflicting opinions had created camps in the committee. What do you have to say about this? Letuka Chafotsa (L.C):It’s not true that the decision to dissolve the AD national youth committee was unanimous as has been widely alleged by AD spokesperson Thuso Litjobo, who is the youth league’s former president. Indeed the dissolved youth committee was divided, hence we had differences of opinion over a host of issues.
So, when a vacancy occurred in the youth committee due to Litjobo’s recent election to the party’s national executive committee, we proposed that there be an elective conference for a new youth committee. There were different opinions on that one, as some people were of the view that instead of elections, there should be an appointee to fill the vacancy. There was also the suggestion that a special conference should be convened, to fill that vacancy. But that didn’t make sense as well because the youth committee was appointed, not elected by a conference with delegates.
When you call a special conference, there should be special delegates invited to perform that special task of electing that special individual to fill that special vacancy. Again, a special conference would lead to a lot of shifts in the youth executive committee. For instance, I cautioned that should we go for the proposed special conference I, for instance, could be elected president of the AD youth league, thus creating a vacancy which would warrant another special conference.
Hence, it only made sense that we went for a fully-fledged elective conference to avoid a string of special conferences and costs. Furthermore, our committees are in such a way that in the youth committee there are representatives of the women and executive committees. We noticed that the plan was to impose people on our committee and in particular Litjobo’s choice.
Before we could even get hold of what was going on, there was an individual sent to attend our sitting, without the matter being communicated to the youth SG’s office in advance.The manner in which that person (one Rasekoai) was sent, denied us the opportunity to sit down and deliberate on whether or not we wanted to work with him so we expelled him from our meeting.
P.E: You accuse Litjobo of having a hand in the dissolution of the youth committee, please substantiate your allegations with facts.
L.C:Yes, he was involved. Remember I said we had very robust consultations as the youth committee, and that in the process we engaged in heated discussions over many issues including going for elections, which was shot down by committee members aligned to Litjobo. The dynamics of him winning the contest that made him PRO are very broad and believe me when I say it was the last time he won elections.
His main problem is that he doesn’t want to let go of his control of the youth league. He wants to lead the youth by remote control from wherever he is now. That’s why he pushed for our committee’s dissolution. If he was sure that his team would win, he wouldn’t have pushed for it to be disbanded. It means he could foresee that any elective conference called at this time wouldn’t be beneficial to him.Default Basic Success warning Info Danger Primary