Army sued

Army sued

MASERU – AN army captain arrested and detained in connection with Lieutenant General Khoantle Motšomotšo’s assassination has sued the Lesotho Defence Force (LDF). Captain Boiketsiso Fonane filed an urgent application in the High Court on Tuesday seeking an order to release him from the LDF detention.

Fonane tells the court in an affidavit that he has been in detention at the Makoanyane Barracks, where he was kept after the police released him without any charge, for the past three weeks.
He says the soldiers have kept him in chains despite the fact that the police have not charged him. He wants the court to order the army to release him unconditionally.
Captain Fonane says the military police arrested and detained him on September 17.
The army handed him to the police for interrogation on September 22.
The police released him three days later without charge.

He says he was handed back to the army and was expecting to be immediately released but he was thrown back into detention.
“I am still in military detention as I sign this affidavit,” Captain Fonane says.
“I aver that I was extensively interrogated on all these occasions by different teams of investigators for extensive acts which the police suspect as acts of illegality by the military.”

“I aver that the police confirmed to my face that the investigations do not reveal any basis for me to be suspected of anything,” he says.
“It is for the foregoing reason that I have not been charged despite my lengthy detention. My continued detention is therefore null and void in the premises.”

He pleads with the court to treat his case as urgent “because it affected my freedom which is guaranteed in the constitution that it can only be interfered with provided there is a justification”.  He says there is no justification for his detention.
“I am continuously detained and in chains on my feet but I have not committed any crime. I submit therefore that I have made out a case for relief prayed for in the notice of motion for we have no other remedy save to approach the court in the manner that I have done.”

Advocate Letuka Molati said Captain Fonane “is suffering a continuous illegality meted against him”.
Molati said his client has no alternative remedy in the circumstances. Captain Fonane is among soldiers who have been arrested in connection with the killing of Lt Gen Motšomotšo’s on September 5.

The soldiers are accused of having connived with Brigadier Bulane Sechele and Colonel Tefo Hashatsi who were killed in the shootout that ensued after the murder of Lt Gen Motšomotšo. The army has said it is investigating other soldiers suspected of being involved.

Majara Molupe

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