THE Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) has suspended Secretary-General Selibe Mochoboroane with immediate effect for allegedly working to oust party leader Deputy Prime Minister Mothetjoa Metsing.
LCD spokesperson Teboho Sekata yesterday told the Lesotho Times the final straw was Mr Mochoboroane’s failure to attend at a National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting on Tuesday.
Mr Sekata said Mr Mochoboroane “did not even care to make an apology” for his absence and it had since emerged that contrary to popular belief that he had been feuding with LCD deputy leader, Tšeliso Mokhosi, he was actually fighting Mr Metsing for control of the party.
“He (Mr Mochoboroane) was actually fighting the leader and not his deputy as previously believed,” Mr Sekata said.
“He indicated that he wanted Ntate Metsing to resign from his position as leader of the party and demanded he assume the leadership in order for things to work out for all of them.
“In the event that Ntate Metsing did not resign, Ntate Mochoboroane wanted the Elders’ Committee to facilitate his reinstatement as Energy Minister as he complained that his reassignment to the Small Business ministry was un-procedural as it had not been communicated to him by the party leader as per the coalition agreement.
“But there is simply no way we can reinstate him to the Energy ministry because we do not have such powers as a party and we cannot remove the party leader without any letters to do so from constituencies,” Mr Sekata said, adding Mr Mochoboroane was “asking for too much and we just had to reject all that as it was not viable”.
Mr Sekata said although they could not remove the party leader, they could at least eject Mr Mochoboroane because “after all, we have also learnt that he is now forming a new party and we can’t have him do that with our resources and under our umbrella, hence we told him to park aside.”
He said Mr Mochoboroane would remain a cabinet minister until Mr Metsing advises Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili that he be removed as he had been appointed under the LCD umbrella.
“We have therefore called an urgent special conference to update our constituency committees but it is the Prime Minister’s responsibility to dismiss him from cabinet,” Mr Sekata said, adding all they could do as a party was to communicate their position to Dr Mosisili.
The split in the LCD adds to the government’s vulnerability to collapse barely two years after assuming power after the 28 February snap elections.
Already the seven-party coalition is reeling after the major partner, Democratic Congress (DC), split earlier last month as the culmination of a protracted turf war between party leader and Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili and his former deputy Monyane Moleleki.
Mr Moleleki has since formed a party called Alliance of Democrats (AD) along with the bulk of the DC’s youth and women’s league members.