HONIARA City Council has a new mayor.
He is Alfrence Fatai of Vura ward.
Mr Fatai polled 16 votes against his contender, Charles Cheka Aiwasuga, who received only two votes after round one of voting.
One vote was rejected after the councillor did not ink the x sign on it.
Former city mayor, Andrew Mua withdrew his nomination on the floor before the start of election, which the clerk, Charles Kelly warmly accepted.
A total of 19 councillors participated in the voting except for Member for Parliament for West Honiara Namson Tran.
Under the HCC Act, any member that took the oath yesterday has assumed the title of councillor on his name until the house is dissolved.
As such, the 12 elected councillors, Guadalcanal Premier Bartholomew Vavanga, three Members of Parliament for Honiara namely Douglas Ete (East Honiara), John Moffat Fugui (Central Honiara), and Namson Tran (West Honiara) plus the four members appointed by Mr Ete will be called councillors.
This was despite Mr Ete had the Deputy Prime Minister and Minster for Home Affairs under his belt and Mr Fugui, deputy speaker and Mr Vavanga, the premier of Guadalcanal.
Speaking after his victory, Mr Fatai, who spent most of his time in the private sector, thanked the councillors for putting the trust on him to lead in the next four years.
Mr Fatai said they need to work together to achieve the wishes of the people of Honiara.
He said in their next meeting, he will appoint his standing committees and discuss the corporate plan for 2015.
Mr Fatai said some of the pressing issues his committee will look into are the revenue collection and gravesite at Kola’a Ridge.
“We need to expand the tax base of the council and look into the cemetery at Kola’a Ridge because it is now overcrowded,” he said.
Mr Fatai said for national issues like migration and over population, he will work together with three MPs of Honiara and the national government to address them.
His predecessor, Mr Mua said he withdrew his nomination in order to give fresh blood to move the council forward.
Mr Mua said he had made his contribution in the last two terms with the development of Pikinini clinic, dental and women clinics.
He said the foundation has been laid and it’s up to the new leader to carry forward from there on.
His successor Mr Fatai is still to set the date for the next full council’s meeting, but they might probably meet around January or early February.
By EDDIE OSIFELO