Francistown Mayor, Sylvia Muzila has survived yet another plot by her fellow BDP councillors to oust her through a motion of no confidence. During a party caucus ahead of the scheduled week long full council meeting, BDP councillors had resolved that Muzila should resign or she will be recalled through a motion of no confidence.
“During our caucus at the party regional office, eight councillors had supported the motion to recall the mayor, while five voted against the motion and two of our colleagues abstained from the polls,” one councillor who attended the gathering told this publication on condition of anonymity.
On Monday when the council business was expected to resume as scheduled, Muzila moved swiftly to adjourn the council session for 14 days while Kanana ward councillor, Cornelius Gopolang was about to table a motion of no confidence against the former district commissioner.
Muzila’s decision to adjourn the council left her colleagues shell shocked while others were fuming that council standing orders were flouted. Councillors across the political divide agreed that what Muzila did was against the council standing orders. Central ward councillor, Ephraim Maiketso said, “according to standing orders, the mayor has to table the motion to adjourn the meeting and two thirds of majority should support her for the motion to succeed.”
The council standing orders stipulate that a meeting of the council may be adjourned upon giving reasonable grounds and through a vote of the majority of members present. It further states that a motion of adjournment of the council shall take precedence over all other business.
Apparently, Muzila was advised by Francistown West MP, Ignatius Moswaane to catch her peers of guard and adjourn the meeting so that the leadership at Tsholetsa House could intervene to calm the storm. The Mayor then reported the matter to the party leadership seeking their immediate intervention to resolve the stand-off.
Additional member of the BDP central committee, MP Slumber Tsogwane was sent to Francistown to reconcile the councillors. During a closed door meeting, Tsogwane is said to have told councillors to prioritize party unity ahead of the primary elections slated for August this year.
“Tsogwane pleaded with us to burry our hatchets and work together as the party has reached a critical stage of holding primary elections, therefore internal fighting will not be tolerated,” another councillor revealed.
During the gathering, Muzila was ordered to drop her case against specially elected councillor, Andy Boatile. The police recently confiscated Boatile’s phone to carry their investigations after Muzila reported him for reportedly calling her a witch during a heated WhatsApp conversation. This was the third time that BDP councillors tried to dethrone Muzila from her position but the mayor has always emerged victories against her detractors.