The cold war between Tati West MP Biggie Butale and embattled Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) Youth League president Moabi Mavange nearly played itself in front of Vice President Mokgweetsi Masisi recently. This was during the victory celebrations for of Kalakamati ward councilor, Zibani Mbalambi where Masisi was the guest of honour. Butale was not included in the programme initially and was not seated at the top table as it is tradition. Observers have read a lot into this but Butale is not worried about developments. “There was nothing sinister that transpired at the launch. It is true that I was initially not in the programme. But I was later given an opportunity to give a vote of thanks. It happens in life but I am not pointing an accusing finger at anybody. Mistakes are common,” Butale downplayed the drama. Asked why he was not sitting at the top table, Butale said: “I was sitting amongst councilors and village leaders not at the top table not because there was any malice. It just happened that way but there was no exterior motive.” However, sources close to the goings on in the Tati West constituency have long hinted that knives are out for Butale. Sources say Mavange and North East District Council (NEDC) deputy chairperson Boikhutso Mandevu are leading a well-orchestrated bid to overthrow Butale in the next year’s primary elections. As if not slotting Butale in the programme was not humiliating enough, Mandevu acknowledged the legislator well after ward secretaries when delivering his welcome remarks. “Mandevu was trying to humiliate Butale to the core,” said the source. It remains to be seen how things play out in Tati West. Mavange and Mandevu alongside their allies had for some time tried hard to conceal their antagonism towards Butale who doubles, as an Assistant Minister of Trade. Informed sources say the antagonism between Mavange and his cronies towards Butale started the minute the BDPYL president announced his intentions to challenge the legislator in the ruling party primaries next year. According to informed sources, Mavange has been seemingly enjoying support from the sitting ward councilors in the area.