MASERU — Trade Minister Temeki Tšolo was given his marching orders soon after he landed at the Moshoeshoe 1 International Airport from Turkey on Saturday.
Instead of his official drivers, Tšolo was welcomed at the airport by a government messenger who handed him his letter of dismissal from Prime Minister Tom Thabane.
The letter stripped him of all his official benefits with immediate effect, including his official vehicles and chauffeurs.
It would seem that his chauffeurs had already been informed of the decision before Tšolo arrived because they did not show up at the airport.
Tšolo had to call relatives to take him from the airport.
Tšolo’s fate was sealed at a heated cabinet meeting convened by Thabane before he left for the UN general Assembly in New York last week. This was after the cabinet received a report that the All Basotho Convention MP for Mafeteng recently assaulted a male Lesotho Revenue Authority officer at the Van Rooyen border gate in Mafeteng.
The minister is alleged to have accused the officer of delaying to give him M10 change after paying toll fees at the border gate.
The injuries were so serious that the man had to go to the hospital.
Police spokesperson Thato Ramarikhoane has said the police are investigating the former minister for assault.
Tšolo has since been succeeded by his former deputy, Sek’hulumi Ntsoaole, who is also the MP for Mabote constituency.
Teya-Teyaneng constituency MP Maliehe Maliehe took over as Ntsoaole’s deputy.
When contacted about his dismissal on Tuesday Tšolo said it was not true that he received his dismissal letter when arriving at airport.
Tšolo said he would talk about his dismissal after speaking to Thabane.