Law Society boss warns of manipulation

Law Society boss warns of manipulation

MASERU – Law Society of Lesotho president, Advocate Tekane Maqakachane, has warned of the wrongful manipulation of the law and legal processes by Lesotho’s politicians to achieve certain goals.
Maqakachane, who referred to the manipulation of the law as “lawfare”, was speaking at the delayed opening of the Court of Appeal session on Monday.
“Can we survive the migration of politics to the courts?” he asked.
Although Maqakachane did not specifically mention the internal political fights of the ruling All

Basotho Convention (ABC) that are now in the courts, he strongly warned of the fragility of Lesotho’s judiciary.
He questioned “the ability of our judiciary to navigate the turbulent terrain of lawfare and to reflect on the consequences of the lawfare”.
“Political questions are better addressed and resolved by other branches of government, and not by the judiciary,” he said.

He said with the advent of coalition governments in Lesotho, more and more questions which could be solved through political mediation and strategic direction “were now being referred to the judiciary for resolution”.
“Our courts are precariously sitting at the intersection of law, conflict and politics, and their intervention is likely to render them agents and tools of lawfare,” he said.
He recalled how the courts were used to resolve a dispute about colours and emblem between the Lesotho Congress for Democracy and the Democratic Congress (DC) in 2012.

He also recalled a case between the Minister of Law and Constitutional Affairs and Nkuebe in 2004 on whether the distribution of emergency food supplies by the Disaster Management Authority through MPs constituted political patronage.
Maqakachane also touched on “the ABC saga between the High Court and the Court of Appeal”.
Maqakachane called on members of the judiciary to serve the people without fear or favour, in the interest of the proper administration of justice, rule of law and constitutionalism.

Staff Reporter

 

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