Thabane not going anywhere, says Phori

Thabane not going anywhere, says Phori

MASERU-PRIME Minister Thomas Thabane will step down when he wants as he is not bound by this week’s agreement with a South African envoy.
That is according to Small Businesses Minister Chalane Phori, a staunch loyalist of Thabane.

“(He was) elected to his office for five years and will not step down at the whim of bad wishers,” Phori said in a video that has been widely distributed on social media.

Phori said the government has an option to just ignore the agreement signed with an envoy that South African President Cyril Ramaphosa sent to resolve rising political tensions triggered by Thabane’s alleged deployment of the army.

“Thabane will leave when he wants,” Phori said.
“We are not obliged to listen to South Africa, we may take or reject what they are saying.”

The envoys came after Thabane allegedly sent soldiers into the streets, a day after the Constitutional Court ruled against his decision to prorogue the parliament.

A day earlier the High Court had scuttled his bid to suspend Police Commissioner Holomo Molibeli.
The deployment came after the prime minister had complained that some people were using the courts to destabilize his government.
The envoy, led by former Justice Minister Jeff Radebe, included deputy minister Candith Mashego-Dlamini and State Security Deputy Minister Zizi Kodwa.

Communications Minister Thesele ’Maseribane said during the talks with the envoy it was agreed that the rule of law will be respected.
Radebe told a press conference that Ramaphosa became very concerned “by the recent developments that took place in Lesotho more particularly the suspension of Commissioner of Police and events that followed it”.
Radebe also said his boss was concerned by Thabane’s prorogation of parliament.

He said the majority of the people they met said Thabane has to leave office with dignity, grace and security and that “he must leave immediately”.
It is the agreement that Thabane leave immediately that Phori said can be ignored.

He said the Lesotho constitution does not address the retirement of the Prime Minister so some amendments have to be done by parliament before he leaves.
“If these matters are approached with urgency it will be important,” Radebe said.
“It is important that the rule of law is upheld, (and) also the court judgments,” he said

Nkheli Liphoto

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