Mphaka bounces back

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. . . as Thabane also appoints principal secretaries

Pascalinah Kabi

PRIME Minister Thomas Thabane has re-appointed Moahloli Mphaka to his old job as government secretary (GS), two years after the latter was fired by the Pakalitha Mosisili-led seven-party former government.

Mr Mphaka served as GS in the first Dr Thabane-led coalition — which governed Lesotho from 2012 until 2015 — but he and other principal secretaries (PSs) were fired by the Dr Mosisili-led former government which came to power after the February 2015 snap elections.

However, Dr Thabane’s All Basotho Convention returned to power after it combined its 48 seats with those of the Alliance of Democrats (nine), Basotho National Party (five) and Reformed Congress of Lesotho (one) to form government after the 3 June 2017 snap polls.

This paved the way for the re-appointment of Mr Mphaka and other officials this week on Tuesday.

“The office of the Government Secretary informs the nation that in terms of Section 139 (1) and (2) of the Constitution, the Right Honourable Prime Minister has appointed the Government Secretary, Principal Secretaries and the Director of General Public Service Assessment Center respectively,” reads part of a press release from the GS’s office.

PSs from two ministries, Communications, Science and Technology as well as Water Affairs, were not appointed. Dr Thabane’s Press Attaché Thabo Thakalekoala told LeNA the appointments would be made soon without elaborating.

However, the appointments have drawn criticism from Gender Links Country Manager, ‘Manteboheleng Mabetha who called on government to give women more leadership roles. Only six out of the 25 new appointees are women.

“It is disappointing that women representation is continuing to decline in leadership positions, especially in government, with a very low percentage of women representation in the recent appointments of PS,” Ms Mabetha said, adding that it was more depressing that the appointments were done during an African Women’s Month.

Women’s Month is celebrated in August as a tribute to the more than 20 000 South African women who marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria on 9 August 1956 protesting against the extension of pass laws to women in that country.

With this year’s theme centred on the inclusion of women in decision-making positions, Ms Mabetha said this should have influenced the appointment of more women to decision-making positions.

“We strongly appeal to our government to give women more opportunities and use gender lenses when making critical appointments like these ones,” she said.

  

List of Principal Secretaries:

‘Maseithati Mabeleng (Labour and Employment), Ntahli Matete (Forestry, Range and Soil and Conservation), Tjoetsane Seoka (Gender and Youth, Sports and Recreation), Thabiso Lebese (Education and Training), Nthoateng Lebona (Finance), Lechoo Setenane (Cabinet, Administration), ‘Matieli Makhele-Sekhantšo (Cabinet, Economic Affairs), Thebe Mokoatle (Trade and Industry), Malefetsane Masasa (Social Development), Lerata Pekane (Small Business, Cooperatives and Marketing), Malefetsane Nchaka (Agriculture, Food and Security), Lebohang Mochaba (Justice, Human Rights and Correctional Services), Nkopane Monyane (Foreign Affairs and International Relations), Monaphathi Makara (Health), Tšeliso Mokoko (Local Government and Chieftainship Affairs, Soaile Mochaba (Mining), Mothabathe Hlalele (Public Works and Transport), Khomotsoana Tau (Development Planning), ‘Machabana Lemphane-Letsie (Home Affairs), Tieho ‘Mamaisane (Energy and Meteorology), Khothatso Tšooana (Police and Public Safety), ‘Mole Khumalo (Law and Constitutional Affairs), Motena Tsolo (Tourism, Environment and Culture), Tanki Mothae (Defence and National Security), Lefu Manyokole (Senior Private Secretary to the Prime Minister and Taelo Ntsokotsane (Director of General Public Service Assessment Centre).

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