Mosisili must unify own party first

Mosisili must unify own party first

I am neither a political scientist nor a political analyst but the chaos that is currently reigning within Lesotho’s political parties does not need the eye of any such expert. Even we laymen can see that our parties always go through turbulence every time they go for elective conferences.
This always leads to splinter parties. On our radar currently is the Democratic Congress (DC) that is washing its dirty linen in public for all and sundry to see. The DC’s problems are a concern as this party has the second highest number of seats in parliament and because of not being in the coalition, it leads the opposition. We know the opposition is the government-in-waiting hence my concern on how they conduct their affairs.

The DC is all over the media, be it radio, print or social media where cadres are throwing terrible accusations at each other. The leader of the party is also in the midst of the commotion as he is already playing the role he knows best, that of being a prophet of doom.
The leader is already prophesying that come committee elections in 2019, some will leave the party. I thought the role of the leader was to ensure that the party membership is always intact, but I now see a leader who doesn’t care that some members may leave the party.

We are on the verge of reforms; the reforms that will be led by the very same politicians that lack political tolerance within their own parties. How can we trust people that fail to preach peace within their small parties to bring peace for the whole country?

I am not against people contesting for leadership positions within their parties. What baffles me is the manner in which campaigns are now being conducted. The name calling, the threats, the heckling that has now dogged our political landscape are worrying. I am not only blaming the DC with the apparent lack of political tolerance as this happens in almost all the big political parties. I am just citing them as an example as they are the ones in the public sphere right now.

Politicians that fail to run their campaigns for in-house elections cannot be trusted to lead us into peaceful reforms that will benefit every Mosotho. Politicians must first clean their own house before attempting to change the lives of others. There is need for a very serious mind-set shift on the part of our politicians if we are to find a solution to Lesotho’s problems.
We do not need short-term resolutions such as the ones that were brought by the IPA. I am not in any way undermining the achievements of the IPA, but we are all witnesses that their solutions were short-lived as they never lasted for a long time before another political turmoil ensued.

With the current reforms, we do not want five minutes solutions, we want a Lesotho that is envisioned by the Vision 2020 which states that by the year 2020, Lesotho shall be a stable democracy where the principles of good governance will be anchored on the respect for human rights, the rule of law, political openness, political participation and tolerance.
This form of governance will be based on five pillars of democracy which include: supremacy of the will of the people, transparency, a devoted and efficient public service, justice for all and efficient chieftainship.

We are only a year before the year 2020. But we are nowhere near the proposed principles of a stable democracy. Basotho have for a long time been notorious for developing good plans that never see the light of day. That notion needs to end with us. We should not pass on that trait to the next generation.

We have a chance of changing the status quo in Lesotho if we genuinely face our problems and change the way we do things. For a change, we need leaders with emotional intelligence.
We also need transformational leaders that will lead us effectively into the reform process, a process that will see us grooming servant leaders that will lead Lesotho into greener pastures.
The reforms should not be carried out just to get SADC off our backs. They should be owned by Basotho and be a beacon of hope for a better Lesotho that we can all proudly call home. Our political leaders must therefore wean themselves from their short-sighted philosophies of divide and rule.

Our leaders should refrain from dividing their followers but put in place strategies and policies that will see the current number of political parties declining instead of growing and becoming more effective as vehicles of change.

By:  Kelello Rakolobe

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