Parties demand no-confidence motion

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Pascalinah Kabi

OPPOSITION parties have urged the parliamentary business committee to give its amended no confidence motion against Prime Minister Thomas Thabane and his government the urgent attention they say it deserves.

The opposition re-submitted its no-confidence motion on 30 October following a directive by the National Assembly Speaker, Sephiri Motanyane, that they amend the original motion.

The original motion was filed on 12 October this year by Democratic Congress (DC) legislator for Qalabane, Motlalentoa Letsosa and Lesotho Congress for Democracy’s Lineo Tlali who indicated that they want exiled DC deputy leader, Mathibeli Mokhothu, to take over from Dr Thabane in the event the no-confidence motion is successful.

Mr Mokhothu fled the country in August this year citing “suspicious vehicles” at his home and alleging persecution of opposition leaders by the government. Also in exile are LCD leader, Mothetjoa Metsing, and his deputy, Tšeliso Mokhosi who also allege persecution by the government.

Mr Letsosa yesterday told the Lesotho Times that after re-submitting the motion, they now expected the matter to be treated with urgency.

“We received the letter from the speaker of parliament instructing us to remove two words from our motion and we have since amended our motion and refiled it,” Mr Letsosa said.

“The minute one submits the motion, the ball is no longer in their court and we hope the business committee will sit down, discuss the matter and give it the urgency it deserves,” Mr Letsosa said.

He said the motion had to be brought to parliament urgently.

Dr Thabane’s government consists of his All Basotho Convention (ABC) party, the Alliance of Democrats (AD), Basotho National Party and the Reformed Congress of Lesotho.

The parties cobbled together their 63 seats to form Lesotho’s third coalition government in the aftermath of the 3 June 2017 National Assembly elections which produced a hung parliament.

They ousted a seven-party government which was led by DC leader, Pakalitha Mosisili.

Dr Mosisili’s DC and six other parties that constituted the former government could only muster a collective 47 seats which were 14 short of the 61-seat threshold required to form government.

The governing coalition subsequently added four more seats- one when former DC legislator, Tlohelang Aumane defected to the AD and the other three in the wake of ABC’s triumph in the 30 September 2017 by-elections in the Thupa-Kubu, Hololo and Teyateyaneng constituencies.

As it stands, the governing coalition has 67 seats, while the DC and Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) have 40.

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