Simnikiwe Hlatshaneni
Premium Journalist
1 minute read
21 Feb 2019
6:30 am

Lesotho consults citizens in SA in reform process

Simnikiwe Hlatshaneni

President Cyril Ramaphosa has been involved in mediation on political conflict and reform deliberations in the country.

FILE PICTURE: Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa meets with Prime Minister of Lesotho Thomas Thabane at the State House in Maseru in 2014. Picture: DOC

The government of Lesotho is set to pull in opinions from thousands of its citizens living in South Africa, as part of a wide-scale consultation process ahead of reforms.

This after the country has undergone three national elections over the past five years.

The kingdom’s economic and political foundations have been shaky since a failed military coup catapulted the country into political conflict in 2014.

According to Prime Minister Tom Thabane’s spokesperson Refiloe Kepa, the country was engaged in comprehensive national reforms, focusing on seven thematic areas: the constitution, parliament, judiciary, security, public service, economy and the media.

“It is an all-inclusive process and it is expected that all Basotho in the country and the diaspora will make their contributions,” she said in a statement.

President Cyril Ramaphosa, in his capacity as a facilitator in Lesotho in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), has been involved in mediation on political conflict and reform deliberations in the country.

Taelo Ntsokotsane, chairperson of the technical working committee responsible for the reform process, said the tanking foreign direct investment in the country, lack of media freedom and political unrest were main concerns identified by the committee.

“The country has been through political unrest, political assassinations and the coup. In five years, there were three elections, so that whoever was in power during that time wouldn’t finish their term because elections would be held due to political unrest.

“There were glaring security challenges and so, in 2013, SADC, the [African Union] and the United Nations got some experts to guide us on how the election model of our country should look in as far as it meets international standards and the constitution,” said Ntsokotsane.

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