Why Wasco boss was suspended

Why Wasco boss was suspended

MASERU-FUTHO Hoohlo, the Wasco chief executive who was suspended this week, had a fallout with Water Minister Nkaku Kabi.
The press statement announcing Hoohlo’s suspension did not give details apart from that there is an investigation against him and he will remain out of office until December 12.

Last night Hoohlo said he could only confirm the suspension but was reluctant to give further details.
Kabi was not picking our calls at the time of going to print last night.
Several sources however told thepost that the suspension is a culmination of relations that have slowly frayed between the two since Kabi became Water Minister in July.

A source said Kabi is frustrated that Hoohlo keeps referring him to the governance protocols instead of “just taking orders”.
“He reminds the minister of the proper governance etiquettes whenever the minister tries to push his weight around. Kabi doesn’t like it,” said the sources.

They said Hoohlo has also insisted that the minister deals with him through the board of directors instead of just summoning him to his office willy-nilly.
Other sources however believe Hoohlo could be a victim of raging factional battles within the All Basotho Convention (ABC).

They say Kabi sees Hoohlo as too aligned with Samonyane Ntsekele, the former Water Minister and former secretary general of the party.
It is Ntsekele who appointed Hoohlo in August 2019. Kabi and Ntsekele belong to different camps within the ABC.
Ntsekele belongs to former Prime Minister Thomas Thabane’s camp while Kabi is with Prime Minister Moeketsi Majoro’s group.

“Kabi simply wants to appoint his own person,” said another source close to the issue.
A senior Wasco employee who refused to be named said apart from the police angle to the fight, Hoohlo might have angered some government officials when he refused to approve a M3.5 million tender for a sewerage project in Khubetsoana.

“Hoohlo felt there were some irregularities and refused to sanction it,” the official said.
“The company that claimed to have the tender has been aggressively lobbying the minister to intervene. I hear the minister or someone close to him tried to broach the issue but Hoohlo would have none of it.”
thepost has been told that the company belongs to a local football executive with strong links to the ABC.

Hoohlo becomes the second Wasco boss to be suspended within the past two years.
His predecessor, the late Lehohohonolo Manamolela, was suspended in July 2018 over a battery of allegations that were never eventually proven. He died in February 2019.

Staff Reporter

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