More grief for Hashatsi’s mother

More grief for Hashatsi’s mother

MASERU – THE family of the late Colonel Tefo Hashatsi says it still does not know how their son died because they are unable to pay the pathologist who performed the autopsy.
The pathologist is still holding on to the report because his fees have not been paid.
Colonel Hashatsi’s mother ’Matšepo Hashatsi told thepost this week that the family managed to pay only half of the pathologist’s fees.
She said her family, together with the family of Brigadier Bulane Sechele with whom they were killed outside the Lesotho Defence Force (LDF), were charged over M100 000 for the post mortem collectively.

The bodies of Brigadier Sechele and Colonel Hashatsi, who were killed in September last year at the Lesotho army headquarters after they allegedly rebelled and murdered commander Lieutenant General Khoantle Motšomotšo, were examined by Professor Gert Saayman, a South African forensic pathologist.
Professor Saayman is one of the top pathologists in South Africa whose fame rose after he was hired by the Steenkamp family to examine the body of their slain model daughter, Reeva, in 2014 by her Paralympics champion boyfriend Oscar Pistorius.

Hashatsi argued that her son’s burial was delayed because the family could not get the pathologist.
She said they were made to go to Teya-Teyaneng police to get the pathologists but the Teya-Teyaneng police referred them back to headquarters police.
She said there was one police officer, (name withheld) who shifted them from pillar-to-post when they had to do the post-mortem.
Hashatsi said the local pathologists who agreed to assist them did not live to their promise and they had no alternative but to seek assistance from outside the country.
“We forked out stashes of cash to pay the foreign pathologist for the post-mortem,” she said.

She said they were informed by their private pathologist that if her son was attended on time, his life could have been saved.
Hashatsi said now some intelligence officers are stalking members of her family to lay their hands on a copy of the pathologist’s report.
“I wonder what they want from the post- mortem results when they do not come straight to me so that I could hear their story,” she said.
Hashatsi said she will not rest until she gets answers from the LDF and the government on how her son was killed.
She said since his death last year the government has not said anything to her or any member of the family.

She said soon after her son’s death, members of the army only demanded their uniform which she quickly handed back.
And his government house at Makoanyane Barracks was thoroughly searched but nothing was confiscated, she alleged.
“We want to know who killed our son and why he was killed,” Hashatsi said.

She said there are more questions that have not been answered by the government in connection with their son’s death.
“We have heard that there was someone who was in the office when our son was killed. We want to know who that someone was. And what was he doing in that office.”
Hashatsi said the army took her son’s cell-phone when he was killed.

Both Colonel Hashatsi and Brigadier Sechele were buried like ordinary citizens after the government and the army denied them military honours.
Hashatsi’s aunt ’Mangaka Tlali said she was the first family member to arrive at the Makoanyane Military Hospital after hearing news that her nephew had been killed.
“I was denied entrance at the Makoanyane Military Hospital,” Tlali said.

She said she rushed to the hospital so that she could arrange for her son to be taken to another hospital.
“But I could not be afforded a chance because some officers I met there were hostile,” she said.
She said she suspected that something amiss happened to their son when he was at the hospital.
Tlali said they were only surprised to hear over the state media that a soldier who shot dead her nephew was acquitted by the court because there was not enough evidence to link him with the killing.

“We were all surprised because we did not know anything regarding that,” she said.
Hashatsi said they feel uncomfortable approaching the government about her son’s benefits after he worked for the army for 14 years.
“We are afraid of the government and they have never approached us,” she said.

When contacted for comment, LDF spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Mashili Mashili said the government has since given its stance about Brigadier Sechele and Colonel Hashatsi.
The government announced that the two officers could not be given a military burial because they were rebels.

Majara Molupe

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