MASERU — Basotho National Party (BNP) leader, Thesele ’Maseribane, on Sunday said Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili must explain why he has beefed up his security only a month after his Democratic Congress (DC) party took over as the government.
’Maseribane told an election rally at Sekamaneng in Berea constituency that Mosisili must explain to the nation the reasons behind the security boost.
He added that Mosisili had also stepped up security at his home in Roma, all this at the taxpayers’ expenses.
“Ntate Mosisili, is there something happening in Lesotho that we don’t know? Why are you now being heavily escorted by the military and your home heavily guarded?” ’Maseribane said.
“Why has your security suddenly been beefed up? Is there a problem in this country? Please let us know what is going on. Are we going to elections with armed forces?”
’Maseribane said Basotho had gotten used to being ill-treated but they would make their voice heard on May 26 during this year’s general election.
The rally was attended by BNP supporters from Berea, Motimposo, Mabote and Khubetsoana constituencies, mainly youths.
’Maseribane said it was wrong for politicians to use the military to fight their political battles.
“It is not advisable for politicians to violate their control of the military and use it to their benefit when they lose the support of the people they govern,” he said.
He added that it was not clear in what capacity Mosisili was governing Lesotho after the manner in which he assumed power.
“Who is this government’s prime minister? Is it a coalition of parties or is this a caretaker government?” ’Maseribane said.
“There’s not even a document to explain the current state of affairs. If Mosisili were to travel abroad, who will hold fort for him?”
Mosisili on February 28 defected from the Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) with 44 MPs in a move that effectively ended the LCD’s 15-year reign as the government.
The DC was then declared the new government amid howls of protest from opposition parties who said the move was unconstitutional and violated parliamentary procedures.
’Maseribane said although the election date had been announced with political parties gearing up for the poll “their political journey as a party has never been easy”.
“We worked hard during our time as the ruling party but were unseated by the barrel of the gun instead of the ballot,” ’Maseribane said.
BNP leader Leabua Jonathan was ousted in a military coup in 1986.
’Maseribane however appealed to the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) chairperson Limakatso Mokhothu to ensure the 2012 election was “free, fair and devoid of corruption”.
Joang Molapo, the BNP’s deputy leader, said he hoped the party’s manifesto for the 2012 election would appeal to Basotho and that candidates campaigning under its banner would do it solely for the party.
“The candidates will be literally signing a contract between them and the electorate. Post elections and against all odds, they should always remember to honour those contracts,” Molapo said.
Molapo said the DC government was unconstitutional and sarcastically questioned which manifesto the party used to win over Basotho.
“We’re today being governed by the DC which does not have a contract with Basotho. We’re not in the light as to which manifesto they used to lobby your support,” Molapo told the party supporters.
It would be a huge mistake for Basotho not to “spit at the DC government”, he added.