Mosisili to face SADC peers

Mosisili to face SADC peers

Staff Reporter

MASERU – PRIME Minister Pakalitha Mosisili will next week face his SADC peers at a summit in Swaziland as pressure mounts on his government to move fast in implementing the regional bloc’s recommendations.

Although relations between Lesotho and SADC have improved somewhat since January when Mosisili initially refused to receive the Phumaphi Commission Report the prime minister is likely to field stern questions from the regional leaders who want to see significant progress on the recommendations.

Starting in Mbabane next Tuesday, the two-day summit comes at a time when Lesotho is lagging behind in the implementation of some of the recommendations.

The summit will end on August 31, the deadline set by the SADC Double Troika at its last meeting in June in Botswana for the return of Lesotho’s exiled leaders.

The three opposition leaders who fled Lesotho last year claiming their lives were in danger have remained holed up in South Africa, vowing not to return to Lesotho until Lieutenant General Tlali Kamoli is removed.

The leaders repeated the same demand when they met South Africa’s deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa, SADC’s facilitator, in Pretoria two weeks ago.

Their colleagues also reiterated the same to Ramaphosa when he came to Lesotho last Friday.

Basotho National Party deputy leader Joang Molapo said they told Ramaphosa that the opposition leaders will not return until General Kamoli is removed.

“The position remains the same as we have told him in the past. He understands that the leaders will only come back once there is a conducive atmosphere for them to work without fearing for their lives,” Molapo said.

That demand has put the government in a tight spot amid speculation this week that there is no consensus in the coalition government on how to deal with General Kamoli.

Although in June Mosisili told Parliament and Senate that the government was negotiating an exit deal with the general sources in government say there are some in the coalition who don’t believe the commander should go.

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