…As government issues stern warning

…As government issues stern warning

MASERU – OPPOSITION leader Mothetjoa Metsing should voluntarily return home and work with the government or law enforcement authorities will be forced to drag him from exile and press criminal charges against him, a government spokesman has said.
Government spokesman, Nthakeng Selinyane, said Metsing is a wanted person and faces arrest if he continues to refuse to work with the government on the multi-sector reform process.
Selinyane said Metsing is wanted by law enforcement agents for cases linked to corruption and fraud.

The government had planned to extradite him but put the plan on hold in hopes that the politician will cooperate to ensure the success of the reforms, which were put on the table by the Southern African Development Community.
Government will throw Metsing to the wolves if he continues stalling the reform process by refusing to return home, Selinyane said.
“We will not tell the institutions to restrain themselves anymore if he does not participate and he knows that very well,” said Selinyane.
Metsing has refused to leave South Africa where he is in exile claiming that the government is after his head.

He says there are plans to arrest him on cooked up charges. Metsing alleges that the government plans to arrest and kill him in police custody in similar fashion to alleged killings of other crime suspects. He has referred to a case in which he was accused of fraudulently deviating M53 million from the Ministry of Local Government during the construction of Matala Phase I road.
He claims the allegations are politically motivated.

“That is why some people even said if I am coming home I would be arrested and be convicted of the crime,” he said.
Metsing said some people dragged his name in the mud. “Sometimes the truth comes out after damage was done as some of us have their names tarnished by some people,” he said.
But the government has a different view.

According to Selinyane, the opposition politician faces the embarrassment of being dragged back home. Law enforcement institutions will collect him from South Africa and put him in jail, said Selinyane. “His extradition application was temporarily suspended in the interest of reforms,” he said.
“When we approach the date of the national dialogue by end of October we will know at that point whether he is really not willing to participate in the reforms or not,” Selinyane said.

Nkheli Liphoto

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