drama at PM’s office

drama at PM’s office

MASERU

THERE was drama outside the Prime Minister’s offices yesterday after dozens of police officers nearly came to blows.
The fracas happened as the Lesotho Police Staff Association (Leposa) vowed to press on with its march scheduled for today.

It all started when some officers wanted to serve a court order to senior Leposa officials.
The order allows the police management to investigate Leposa’s financial affairs. The Leposa leadership was at the Government Complex to ask Prime Minister Moeketsi Majoro to intervene in their dispute with the police management, particularly Commissioner Holomo Molibeli.

Leposa’s spokesman, Police Constable Motlatsi Mofokeng, said they had two meetings yesterday. The first was with the Minister of Law Professor Nqosa Mahao-led committee which was formed to investigate instability in the police.
Constable Mofokeng said before the second meeting with the Prime Minister a group of police officers came and demanded to see Leposa’s deputy secretary general, Inspector ’Makatleho Mphetho.

Constable Mofokeng said the officers said they had brought a letter to Leposa. Inspector Mphetho refused to accept the letter but five officers allegedly insisted.
PC Mofokeng said Inspector Mphetho told the officers to come to the office on Friday because she was busy.
“While still stunned, the other police officers manhandled the president of Leposa, Senior Inspector Teboho Molia also trying to force him to accept the letter,” Constable Mofokeng said.

S/Inspector Molia refused to take the letter, he said.
“We exchanged harsh words with those police officers,” PC Mofokeng said.
“We did not know what the letter was about”.
Police spokesman Superintendent Mpiti Mopeli said the police officers were going to hand over a court order instructing Leposa to submit its financials to the police management for investigation.

Superintendent Mopeli said there are allegations that the association’s funds are being misused.
Constable Mofokeng said as they entered the Prime Minister’s office they were informed that heavily armed police officers from the Special Operation Unit (SOU) were at their offices at the Teba Complex.
He said the attempt to force the order on them and the police presence at their offices was meant to intimidate them.

He said the police management is trying to block their march against the Commissioner Molibeli who they want removed for alleged incompetence and ignoring court orders. “We will do everything in our power to protect ourselves within the confines of the law,” PC Mofokeng said.
He said Commissioner Molibeli “does not have absolute power in the Lesotho Mounted Police Service”.
Leposa has 4 632 members who are all expected to participate in the march.
“We will give him (Commissioner Molibeli) a chance to do his part so that we also do ours.”

He said they appealed to Police Minister ’Mamoipone Senauoana but she told them to approach the courts.
Meanwhile, last night the parliament’s portfolio committee on National Security and Public Safety was making frantic efforts to stop the march.
Lekhetho Mosito, the committee’s chairman, told thepost they were intervening because the “matter is now getting out of hand”.

The committee met Leposa which was still going on at the time of going to print last night.
Leposa told all regional and district committees that their demonstration will proceed today.
On the other hand, the police boss has issued a memo instructing all district commanders and station commanders to ensure that all police officers will be at work today.

The memo said work attendance books will be filled properly to show who missed work.
The memo threatened drastic measures against those who will not report for duty today.

In another memo the management said the police should not attend the march because it is unlawful. They said the politicians were using Leposa members for their own agenda.
“The police (management) also strongly warns against these acts of incitement meant to destabilise peace in the country,” the statement said.

Staff Reporters

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