Lehata off the hook

Lehata off the hook

MASERU – IN a stunning move, a teenage girl who accused former Law Minister Mootsi Lehata of raping her has withdrawn the case.
The 18-year-old woman, who cannot be identified for ethical reasons, withdrew the case in the Magistrate’s Court last Thursday.
Lehata has been facing charges since July last year.
He is alleged to have raped and impregnated her when she was 17 in January 2018.
She told the court that she is dropping the case on condition that Lehata builds her and the child a house. She also said Lehata should pay a monthly maintenance fee of M1 000 for the child’s upkeep.

Lehata’s lawyer, Attorney Qhalehang Letsika, told thepost that his client has agreed to the woman’s demands.
The victim was an orphan when she was allegedly raped at her rural home in Ha-Moima, atop Matsieng Plateau.
At the time Lehata was law minister and the Democratic Congress (DC) MP for the Makhaleng constituency.
The case was before Chief Magistrate Manyathela Kolobe and was prosecuted by Gcinumizi Tshabalala.

Lehata was arrested on June 29 last year and spent a weekend in a police holding cell at the Police Headquarters.
He first appearance in court in July of the same year and has been on a M500-bail since then as the case was being postponed time and again.
It is alleged that the girl’s relatives tried to sweep the case under the carpet.
The girl later told tneighbours about the incident and implicated Lehata.
However, Lehata was only arrested after the then Social Development Minister ’Matebatso Doti intervened.
Doti later found a foster home for the girl.

Itumeleng Khoete

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