Kamoli rejects foreign judges

Kamoli rejects foreign judges

MASERU – FORMER Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) commander, Lieutenant General Tlali Kamoli, says he does not want foreign judges to preside over his case.
Lt Gen Kamoli, who is facing 14 charges of attempted murder and one of murder, told the acting judge Justice Moroke Mokhesi on Tuesday that he prefers local judges to hear his case.
He said he would not be happy if his case is presided over by foreign judges.

He said he was hoping that the local judges will preside over his case because he believes they are capable of handling the matter.
The former commander said he did not understand why the court should hire foreign judges for his case when there are qualified local judges.
Lt Gen Kamoli was appearing in court without his legal representative but looked calm and collected.

His 14 attempted murder charges relate to allegations that he placed bombs at the homes of First Lady Maesaiah Thabane in Moshoeshoe II and former police commissioner, Khothatso Tšooana in Ha Abia.

He is also charged for the killing of Sub-inspector Mokheseng Ramahloko during a military raid on police stations in August 2014.
His co-accused in the 15 cases are several soldiers whose cases the government believes should also be handled by foreign judges.
There are nearly 40 soldiers awaiting trial for several crimes allegedly committed during Lt Gen Kamoli’s tenure. The government has been looking for foreign judges for what it calls high profile cases for more than half a year.

That search has come to naught thus far, leaving Lt Gen Kamoli and several other soldiers in limbo.
Lt Gen Kamoli has been custody for 11 months after the High Court denied him bail.
Lesotho Congress for Democracy’s (LCD) Deputy Leader, Tšeliso Mokhosi, and the former Police Commissioner Molahlehi Letsoepa are some of the senior officials whose cases have been stalled due to lack of foreign judges.

A few months ago it was revealed that Attorney General, Haae Phoofolo had requested the European Union to assist with some judges.
Prime Minister Thomas Thabane has also asked SADC countries to help with judges for the prominent cases.
On Tuesday Lt Gen Kamoli told the court that he was expecting that his case would be expedited because he cooperated with the police when summoned.
Justice Mokhesi said he would look into Lt Gen Kamoli’s grievances.

Staff Reporter

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