MFP leaders bury hatchet

MFP leaders bury hatchet

MASERU- MOEKETSE Malebo has made peace with the man who masterminded his ouster as Marematlou Freedom Party (MFP) leader two years ago.
Thoriso Lekatsa replaced Malebo as MFP leader in June 2017 after a gruelling battle that spilled into the courts and tore the party apart.
So bitter was the power battle that Malebo boycotted the party’s elective conference and vehemently refused to accept the results.
Arguing that the conference was illegal, Malebo continued to hold himself out as the party leader.

Since then the MFP, one of Lesotho’s oldest political parties, has been in turmoil as it slid into oblivion with its support base shrinking due to power squabbles.
Despite his removal, Malebo has continued to cast a long shadow on the party.
Some MFP members have stood by him while others have moved on with Lekatsa.
But last Friday the nemeses announced that they had smoked the peace pipe.

Lekatsa said he and Malebo are now working together to rebuild the party so that it lives up to its motto: “Khotso ke nala, Kopano ke matla” (Peace is Prosperity, Unity is Strength).
He said the conflict has taught them that they should learn from their mistake.
He said his fight against Malebo was a result of differences in opinion.

“Our interpretation of the Constitution was different but now we have negotiated,” he said, adding that “personal interests” were also at play.
Lekatsa said “independent institutions” mediated in his negotiations with Malebo.
Malebo said the party’s lawyer and the church also helped the factions find each other.
The focus now, he said, is to build the party.

“We are in politics to work for the betterment of Lesotho and Basotho,” Malebo said.
Lekatsa however said the MFP still has problems with “a rowdy group” trying to undermine the peace that he and Malebo have helped achieve.
“We heard they are even calling a political rally that we do not know about as leaders, we did not even prepare for it,” he said.
“The group is led by Nthabiseng Babeli who was deputy leader. She does not want this peace we are trying to build now,” Lekatsa added.

Nkheli Liphoto

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