Knives out for Rantšo

Knives out for Rantšo

MASERU – A Reformed Congress of Lesotho (RCL) youth league leader has accused her boss, Keketso Rantšo, of openly violating the party’s constitution in an attempt to cement her grip on power.
Retšelisitsoe Lesane told thepost this week that Rantšo had deliberately sought to re-write the party’s constitution to push a nefarious power retention agenda.
The accusation comes a week after Rantšo called a special conference to be held on September 7 in Mafeteng to elect a new secretary general for the party. The current general secretary is Machabana Lemphane-Letsie. Letsie and Ranšo fell out over the running of the party.
Lesane said the special conference if it goes ahead would be in clear breach of the party’s constitution.
Rantšo however insists she was within her rights when she called the special conference.
Lesane told thepost that their current national executive committee was elected in February 2017.

“Our constitution clearly states that the committee lasts for three years before any new elections,” Lesane said.
“We were shocked when the leader called a special conference to elect a secretary general despite that we are left with only six months before the next elections.”
Lesane said if their leader really wanted to “dethrone” the secretary general, she could have at least waited until the next elective conference.
But now she is trying to apply massive pressure on party members that “we will not tolerate”.
Lesane said their constitution does not allow the leader to single-handedly call a special conference without engaging the entire national executive committee.
He said a special conference must be announced three months in advance. Rantšo only gave a month’s notice.
“We do not just call conferences within days or just one month,” he said.
Lesane said the three months period is meant to allow members of their party to prepare for such a meeting.
Rants’o’s special conference was therefore unlawful, he said.

In the light of this, Lesane said it appeared as if their leader now had her own party constitution apart from the one that was crafted by the party.
“She gave herself all powers, including a constitutional provision that the leader’s position will not be contested together with the whole executive committee,” he said.
Lesane said they are aware that their leader wants to replace the current secretary general with a pliable individual who will allow her to do as she pleased.
He said their leader was now on a campaign to sow confusion within the party.
The RCL has one seat in Parliament.
Lesane said they will not watch their party going down the drain without a fight.
He also said it would also be irregular to hold the special conference in Mafeteng.
He said their leader had decided to take the conference to her native town so that she could threaten members who will oppose the outcome of the election results.

Lesane said their leader knows that Mafeteng is her stronghold and her supporters are likely to reject the election results.
He also said their leader had abandoned the entire committee and now works only with her deputy.
“The committee sittings are never done and she works with her deputy while the entire committee is there,” he said.
He said they will seek ways to block the special conference to take place as their leader did not follow proper procedures and the constitution.

Lesane said during the coming elections they want Rantšo’s position contested so that members of the party can choose a new leader.
He said Rantšo does not want to step down from the leadership position and it is for this reason that she wants her allies in key positions.
The RCL is a junior partner in a coalition government headed by Prime Minister Thomas Thabane. Chief Thesele ’Maseribane of the Basotho National Party and Monyane Moleleki of the Alliance of Democrats are the other partners in the government.
Several attempts by thepost to get comment from Rantšo this week failed. Rantšo did not pick her calls.

Nkheli Liphoto


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