FORMER Reformed Congress of Lesotho (RCL) secretary-general, ’Mamolula Ntabe has joined the Alliance of Democrats (AD) taking with her several members of the opposition party.
Ms Ntabe reportedly made the switch at a rally at Lepereng in the Maseru district last Sunday and this was confirmed by the AD Secretary, Mokhele Moletsane in an interview with the Lesotho Times.
“I can confirm that although ’m’e ’Mamolula did not cross physically like the rest of the group, she has officially joined AD,” Mr Moletsane said yesterday.
He said the norm was that new members who had defected from their former parties were welcomed with through ululations, song and dance but this could not be done in this instance because of the cordial relations between the AD and RCL.
“This was quite a tough and tricky situation on our leader’s part because RCL and AD have warm relations through the pact that was signed by the opposition bloc, so you can really understand how difficult it was for us,” Mr Moletsane said.
He said it had been a challenge to manage the situation as they were dealing with a group of “dissatisfied and angry people who wanted a new political home and now that we were offering them exactly that I emphasised that they should try and bury the hatchet and forget what had hurt them in their former political home”.
“My plea was also met with a lot of anger and resistance as the defectors cited the case of Mr Moshe Kao who is a relative of the leader of the RCL and was the singer of the party and Public Relations Officer but was openly welcomed to the All Basotho Convention (ABC) when he defected with 80 people just ahead of the opposition leaders’ return.”
He said they had decided that the defectors be handed over their new AD t-shirts and wear them in the tent and not in front of everybody as they wanted to maintain their cordial relationship with the RCL.
Ms Ntabe confirmed her defection to this publication, saying “Yes I have joined the AD but not at that particular rally because I have a constituency which I belong to”.
RCL leader Keketso Rantšo said she had only heard through the rumour mill that Ms Ntabe had left, adding “but there is no problem now that she has confirmed it”.
“Such is politics and I habour no hard feelings as we all make a choice to be happy and I’m glad she got herself peace elsewhere,” Ms Rantšo said.