Hashatsi’s mother demands answers

Hashatsi’s mother demands answers

MASERU – COLONEL Tefo Hashatsi’s mother, ’Matšepo Hashatsi, says she is baffled by the conflicting statements of how her son is said to have died.
’Matšepo told thepost on Tuesday that she had been reliably informed that after his son was shot and his superiors ordered soldiers not to attend to him.

She has rejected the army’s claims that Hashatsi was taken to hospital where he later died.
“On that Tuesday a colleague of Tefo said they were afraid to help him because they did not want to touch his open wounds,” ’Matšepo said.
“On Wednesday the very same colleague said they couldn’t help Tefo because he was holding two hand grenades.”

She says she is puzzled by these two conflicting statements on the reaction of fellow soldiers when her son was killed.
Matšepo also said as Hashatsi’s mother she smelt something fishy.

“I do not care what they say but they plotted against Tefo,” Matšepo said.
She is also peeved after the Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) vowed not to give the family a single cent for her son’s burial despite that he worked in the army for almost 20 years.

Matšepo accused the acting LDF commander, Major General Lineo Poopa, of turning his back on Hashatsi after being close to him for years.
“By the time Tefo was a captain the current commander used to travel everywhere with him. He even went with him to his own courses,” she says.
Matšepo accused the authorities of planning his son’s death.

“My son was shot but did not die on the 1st February 2015 when the current Prime Minister (Thomas Thabane) was in power and now in 2017 the same person is in power and Tefo is killed,” she says.

’Matšepo also took issue with rumours linking her son to a spate of killings in various parts of the country.
“When someone is shot dead people start pointing fingers at Tefo,” she says.
“I sometimes wonder if he was the only soldier who had a real gun that could kill while other soldiers had fake guns that fire out water. Otherwise how do we explain these rumours that he was the only one killing?”

’Matšepo said it was clear Tefodid not go to the commander’s office to cause any trouble and that there is no evidence that he was fighting anybody.
Speaking at a memorial service for slain army commander, Lt Gen Khoantle Motsomotso, on Monday Brigadier Ramanka Mokaloba, who is the director of military operations, said “some parents of these traitors are being misled by a clique of dishonest ones” within the army.
Hashatsi was killed last week outside Motšomotšo’s office at Ratjomose barracks.

The government said Hashatsi and Brigadier Bulane Sechele, who was killed together with Hashatsi, misled the bodyguards and the receptionist into believing that Motšomotšo had called them when they had a plan to kill him.

Brigadier General Khomo Mohobo, the LDF Human Resources manager, said the men’s gun holsters were empty when they entered the commander’s office and the bodyguards could therefore not prevent them from entering.
He said Sechele had a hidden gun which he produced when he was inside the office which he used to shoot the commander, after accusing him of being a sell-out.

’Matšepo said it was clear that Hashatsi had not gone there to fight. She said her son respected his superiors.
“I want to make it clear to every Mosotho that if Tefo’s intention was to fight many people could have died,” ’Matšepo said.
“He would fight back if he was armed and if he went there with that purpose. He would fight,” she said.
She said she believed the army authorities wanted her son dead.

Prime Minister Thomas Thabane’s spokesperson, Thabo Thakalekoala, dismissed ’Matšepo’s claims when contacted by thepost last night.
“She is talking nonsense,” Thakalekoala said.

“Let her wait for the investigation by the army and the police to be completed so that she can say whatever she wants to say. As of now she is talking nonsense,” he said.

“We cannot say anything now because we are still waiting for the completion of the investigations. She is misguided and misinforming herself deliberately.”

Nkheli Liphoto

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