Kingdom of Lesotho
Kingdom of Lesotho
Joined United Nations: 17 October 1966
Human Rights as assured by their constitution
Updated 09 March 2013
note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality
due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death
rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by
age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2012 est.)
Thomas Motsoahae Thabane
Prime Minister since 8 June 2012
The monarch is a "living symbol of national unity" with no executive
or legislative powers; under traditional law the college of chiefs has
the power to depose the monarch, determine who is next in the line
of succession, or who shall serve as regent in the event that the
successor is not of mature age
Next scheduled election: None
HEAD OF GOVERNMENT
According to the constitution, the leader of the majority party in
the Assembly automatically becomes prime minister: elections: last
held 26 May 2012
Next scheduled election: 2017
|DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS
Sotho 99.7%, Europeans, Asians, and other 0.3%,
Christian 80%, indigenous beliefs 20%
Parliamentary constitutional monarchy with 10 districts; Legal system is based on English common law and Roman-Dutch law;
judicial review of legislative acts in High Court and Court of Appeal; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations
Executive: According to the constitution, the leader of the majority party in the Assembly automatically becomes prime minister;
the monarch is hereditary, but, under the terms of the constitution, that came into effect after the March 1993 election, the monarch
is a "living symbol of national unity" with no executive or legislative powers; under traditional law the college of chiefs has the power
to depose the monarch, determine who is next in the line of succession, or who shall serve as regent in the event that the successor
is not of mature age
Legislative: Bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (33 members - 22 principal chiefs and 11 other members appointed by
the ruling party) and the Assembly (120 seats, 80 by popular vote and 40 by proportional vote; members elected by popular vote
for five-year terms)
elections: last held 26 May 2012 (next to be held in 2017)
Judicial: High Court (chief justice appointed by the monarch acting on the advice of the Prime Minister); Court of Appeal;
Magistrate Courts; customary or traditional court
Sesotho (southern Sotho), English (official), Zulu, Xhosa
Lesotho had been populated by Khoi Khoi (Qhuaique) for possibly as long as 40,000 years. Lesotho was later created as an
independent nation. At some stage during their migration south from a tertiary dispersal area Bantu speaking peoples came to settle
the lands that now make up Lesotho as well as a more extensive territory of fertile lands that surround modern day Lesotho. These
people spoke a unique "South Sotho" dialect seSotho and called themselves the Basotho. There were several severe disruptions to
the Basotho peoples in the early 19th century. Firstly marauding Zulu clans, displaced from Zululand as part of the Lifaqane (or
Mfecane), wrought havoc on the Basotho peoples they encountered as they moved first west and then north. Secondly no sooner
than the Zulu has passed to the north than the first Voortrekkers arrived, some of whom obtained hospitality during their difficult
trek north. In 1818, Moshoeshoe I consolidated various Basotho groupings and became their King. During Moshoeshoe's reign
(1823-1870), a series of wars (1856-68) were fought with the Boers who had settled in traditional Basotho lands. These wars
resulted in the extensive loss of land, now known as the "Lost Territory". Moshoeshoe died in 1870. In 1871 the protectorate was
annexed to Cape Colony. The Basotho resisted the British and in 1879 a southern chief, Moorosi, rose in revolt. The rising was
crushed and Moorosi was killed in the fighting. An 1881 peace treaty failed to quell sporadic fighting. Cape Town's inability to
control the territory led to its return to crown control in 1884 as the Territory of Basutoland. The first paramount chief was
Lerothodi, the son of Moshoeshoe. In 1959, a new constitution gave Basutoland its first elected legislature. This was followed in
April 1965 with general legislative elections. Basotholand, along with the two other British Protectorates in the sub-Saharan region
(Bechuanaland and Swaziland), was precluded from incorporation into the Union of South Africa. These protectorates were
individually brought to independence by Britain in the 1960s in line with the trend towards self-government and independence that
swept the British Empire following the close of the Second World War, a trend that reached its peak in Africa in the late 1950s and
early 1960s. By becoming a protectorate Basotholand and its inhabitants were not subjected to Afrikaner rule, which saved them
from experiencing Apartheid, and so generally prospered under more benevolent British rule. Basotho resident in Basotholand had
access to better health services and to education, and came to experience greater political emancipation through independence.
After a 1955 request by the Basutoland Council to legislate its internal affairs, in 1959 a new constitution gave Basutoland its first
elected legislature. On October 4, 1966, the Kingdom of Lesotho attained full independence, governed by a constitutional
monarchy with a bicameral Parliament consisting of a Senate and an elected National Assembly. Early results of the first
post-independence elections in January 1970 indicated that the BNP might lose control. Citing election irregularities, Prime Minister
Leabua Jonathan nullified the elections, declared a national state of emergency, suspended the constitution, and dissolved the
Parliament. In 1973, an appointed Interim National Assembly was established. This internal and external opposition to the
government combined to produce violence and internal disorder in Lesotho that eventually led to a military takeover in 1986. A
military government chaired by Justin Lekhanya ruled Lesotho in coordination with King Moshoeshoe II and a civilian cabinet
appointed by the King. In February 1990, King Moshoeshoe II was stripped of his executive and legislative powers and exiled by
Lekhanya, and the Council of Ministers was purged. Because Moshoeshoe II initially refused to return to Lesotho under the new
rules of the government in which the King was endowed only with ceremonial powers, Moshoeshoe's son was installed as King
Letsie III. In 1992, Moshoeshoe II returned to Lesotho as a regular citizen until 1995 when King Letsie abdicated the throne in
favor of his father. After Moshoeshoe II died in a car accident in 1996, King Letsie III ascended to the throne again. In 1993, a
new constitution was implemented leaving the King without any executive authority and proscribing him from engaging in political
affairs. Multiparty elections were then held in which the BCP ascended to power with a landslide victory. Prime Minister Ntsu
Mokhehle headed the new BCP government that had gained every seat in the 65-member National Assembly. In early 1994,
political instability increased as first the army, followed by the police and prisons services, engaged in mutinies. In August 1994,
King Letsie III, in collaboration with some members of the military, staged a coup, suspended Parliament, and appointed a ruling
council. As a result of domestic and international pressures, however, the constitutionally elected government was restored within a
month. In 1995, there were isolated incidents of unrest, including a police strike in May to demand higher wages. For the most part,
however, there were no serious challenges to Lesotho's constitutional order in the 1995-96 period. In January 1997, armed soldiers
put down a violent police mutiny and arrested the mutineers. In 1997, tension within the BCP leadership caused a split in which Dr.
Mokhehle abandoned the BCP and established the Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) followed by two-thirds of the
parliament. This move allowed Mokhehle to remain as Prime Minister and leader of a new ruling party, while relegating the BCP to
opposition status. The remaining members of the BCP refused to accept their new status as the opposition party and ceased
attending sessions. Multiparty elections were again held in May 1998. Although Mokhehle completed his term as Prime Minister,
due to his failing health, he did not vie for a second term in office. The elections saw a landslide victory for the LCD, gaining 79 of
the 80 seats contested in the newly expanded Parliament. As a result of the elections, Mokhehle's Deputy Prime Minister, Pakalitha
Mosisili, became the new Prime Minister. The landslide electoral victory caused opposition parties to claim that there were
substantial irregularities in the handling of the ballots and that the results were fraudulent. The conclusion of the Langa Commission, a
commission appointed by Southern African Development Community (SADC) to investigate the electoral process, however, was
consistent with the view of international observers and local courts that the outcome of the elections was not affected by these
incidents. Despite the fact that the election results were found to reflect the will of the people, opposition protests in the country
intensified. The protests culminated in a violent demonstration outside the royal palace in early August 1998 and in an
unprecedented level of violence, looting, casualties, and destruction of property. In early September, junior members of the armed
services mutinied. The Government of Lesotho requested that a SADC task force intervene to prevent a military coup and restore
stability to the country. To this end, Operation Boleas, consisting of South African and (later) Botswana troops, entered Lesotho on
September 22, 1998 to put down the mutiny and restore the democratically elected government. The army mutineers were brought
before a court-martial. After stability returned to Lesotho, the SADC task force withdrew from the country in May 1999, leaving
only a small task force (joined by Zimbabwean troops) to provide training to the LDF. In the meantime, an Interim Political
Authority (IPA), charged with reviewing the electoral structure in the country, was created in December 1998 and devised a
proportional electoral system to ensure that there be opposition in the National Assembly. The new system retained the existing 80
elected Assembly seats, but added 40 seats to be filled on a proportional basis. Elections were held under this new system in May
2002, and the LCD won again, gaining 54% of the vote. For the first time, however, opposition political parties won significant
numbers of seats, and despite some irregularities and threats of violence from Major General Lekhanya, Lesotho experienced its
first peaceful election. Nine opposition parties now hold all 40 of the proportional seats, with the BNP having the largest share (21).
The LCD has 79 of the 80 constituency-based seats. As a result of the impact of the Arab Spring in 2011, protests occurred
against the government in regard to unemployment, poverty and low salaries. The protests eventually had the support of taxi drivers,
unions, students and opposition political parties. They also demanded to meet Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili, who had at times
refused to do so. General elections were held in Lesotho on 26 May 2012. The incumbent Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili's newly
formed Democratic Congress won a majority of single-member seats. He also won his seat by the second-largest margin of victory.
However, they only had a plurality in the overall tally and coalition talks are taking place. After more than five years in opposition,
Tom Motsoahae Thabaneformed a coalition with other parties in the wake of the May 2012 parliamentary election and was
appointed Prime Minister.
Source: Wikipedia: History of Lesotho
Small, landlocked, and mountainous, Lesotho relies on remittances from Basotho employed in South Africa, customs duties from
the Southern Africa Customs Union (SACU), and export revenue for the majority of government revenue. However, the
government has recently strengthened its tax system to reduce dependency on customs duties. Completion of a major hydropower
facility in January 1998 permitted the sale of water to South Africa and generated royalties for Lesotho. Lesotho produces about
90% of its own electrical power needs. As the number of mineworkers has declined steadily over the past several years, a small
manufacturing base has developed based on farm products that support the milling, canning, leather, and jute industries, as well as
an apparel-assembly sector. Despite Lesotho's market-based economy being heavily tied to its neighbor South Africa, the US is an
important trade partner because of the export sector's heavy dependence on apparel exports. Exports have grown significantly
because of the trade benefits contained in the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act. Most of the labor force is engaged in subsistence
agriculture, especially livestock herding, although drought has decreased agricultural activity. The extreme inequality in the
distribution of income remains a major drawback. Lesotho has signed an Interim Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility with the
IMF. In July 2007, Lesotho signed a Millennium Challenge Account Compact with the US worth $362.5 million. Economic growth
dropped in 2009, due mainly to the effects of the global economic crisis as demand for the country's exports declined and SACU
revenue fell precipitously when South Africa - the primary contributor to the SACU revenue pool - went into recession, but growth
exceeded 4% per year in 2010-12. Growth is expected to increase due to major infrastructure projects, but Lesotho's weak
manufacturing and agriculture sectors continue to hamper growth.
Source: CIA World Factbook (select Lesotho)
The Lesotho Government is a modified form of constitutional monarchy. The Prime Minister, Pakalitha Mosisili, is head of
government and has executive authority. The King serves a largely ceremonial function; he no longer possesses any executive
authority and is proscribed from actively participating in political initiatives. According to the constitution, the leader of the majority
party in the assembly automatically becomes prime minister; the monarch is hereditary, but, under the terms of the constitution which
came into effect after the March 1993 election, the monarch is a "living symbol of national unity" with no executive or legislative
powers; under traditional law the college of chiefs has the power to determine who is next in the line of succession, who shall serve
as regent in the event that the successor is not of mature age, and may even depose the monarch.
The Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) won the majority in parliament in the 23 May 1998 general elections, leaving the
once-dominant Basotho National Party (BNP) and Basotholand Congress Party (BCP) far behind in total votes. Although
international observers as well as a regional commission declared the elections to have reflected the will of the people, many
members of the opposition have accused the LCD of electoral fraud. The 1998 elections were the third multiparty elections in
Lesotho's history. The LCD, BNP, and BCP remain the principal rival political organizations in Lesotho. Distinctions and
differences in political orientation between the major parties have blurred in recent years.
Nevertheless, after political riots following the disputed 1998, an all-party forum called the Interim Political Authority was formed to
level ground for the next poll. It proposed the restructuring of the Independent Electoral Commission, which happened and the
change of the model from pure First-Past-the-Post System to Mixed Member Proportional Representation.
As a result of the impact of the Arab Spring in 2011, protests occurred against the government in regard to unemployment, poverty
and low salaries. The protests eventually had the support of taxi drivers, unions, students and opposition political parties. They also
demanded to meet Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili, who had at times refused to do so. General elections were held in Lesotho on
26 May 2012. The incumbent Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili's newly formed Democratic Congress won a majority of single-
member seats. He also won his seat by the second-largest margin of victory. However, they only had a plurality in the overall tally
and coalition talks are taking place. After more than five years in opposition, Tom Motsoahae Thabaneformed a coalition with other
parties in the wake of the May 2012 parliamentary election and was appointed Prime Minister.
Source: Wikipedia: Politics of Lesotho
|HUMAN RIGHTS STATEMENTS, ANALYSIS AND CRITIQUES
|2011 Human Rights Report: Lesotho
Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor
2011 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices
May 25, 2012
Lesotho is a constitutional monarchy. Under the constitution the king is head of state but does not actively participate in political
activities. The prime minister is head of government and has executive authority. In the most recent elections in 2007, the governing
Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) party retained a majority of seats in parliament; domestic and international observers
characterized the election as generally free and peaceful. However, some members of the leading opposition parties and nongovernmental
organizations (NGOs) claimed it was not entirely fair. Security forces reported to civilian authorities.
Torture and physical abuse by police, poor prison conditions, and abuse of spouses and children were the most important human rights
problems in the country.
Other human rights problems included lengthy pretrial detention and long trial delays and stigmatization of persons with HIV/AIDS.
Societal abuses included sexual abuse, stigmatization of persons with disabilities, mob violence, human trafficking, and child labor.
The government occasionally took steps to prosecute officials who committed abuses, whether in the security services or elsewhere in
the government; however, impunity sometimes occurred.
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21 October 2011
Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women
Geneva, 3 – 21 October 2011
Concluding observations of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women
2. The Committee expresses its appreciation to the State party for its combined initial, second, third and fourth periodic report, which in
general, followed the Committee’s guidelines for the preparation of reports, and was prepared through a consultative process with the
participation of Government bodies and civil society. The Committee, however, regrets that the report was overdue since 1996. The
Committee expresses its appreciation to the State party for its oral presentation, the written replies to the list of issues and questions
raised by its pre-session working group and the fur ther clarifications to the questions posed orally by the Committee.
3. The Committee commends the State party’s high level delegation, headed by the Minister of Gender, Sports, Youth and Recreation of
Lesotho, which included also theMinister of Justice and Human Rights and Correctional Service, as well as several representatives from
relevant ministries, with expertise in the areas covered by the Convention. The Committee appreciates the open and constructive dialogue
that took place between the delegation and the members of the Committee.
B. Positive aspects
4. The Committee welcomes the progress achieved since the ratification of the Convention by the State party in 1995, including the
legislative reforms that have been undertaken and the adoption of a range of legislative measures. Specific reference is made to the:
a. Sexual Offence Act (2003), recognizing marital rape as an offence;
b. Legal Capacity of Married Persons Act (2006);
c. Labour Code Wage Amendment Act (2009);
d. Education Act (2010), which provides for free an
d compulsory education;
e. Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act (2011), which criminalizes all forms of slavery and provides for harsh penalties for the perpetrators;
f. Children’s Protection and Welfare Act (2011).
C. Principal areas of concern and recommendations
6. The Committee recalls the obligation of the State party to systematically and continuously implement all the provisions of the
Convention and views the concerns and recommendations identified in the present concluding observations as requiring the priority
attention of the State party between now and the submission of the next periodic report. Consequently, the Committee urges the State
party to focus on those areas in its implementation activities and to report on actions taken and results achieved in its next periodic
report. The Committee calls upon the State party to submit the present concluding observations to all relevant ministries, to the
Parliament, and to the judiciary, so as to ensure their full implementation.
7. While reaffirming that the Government has the primary responsibility and is particularly accountable for the full implementation of the
obligations of the State party under the Convention, the Committee stresses that the Convention is binding on all branches of the State
apparatus, and it invites the State party to encourage the Parliament, in line with its procedures, where appropriate, to take the necessary
steps with regard to the implementation of the present concluding observations and the Government’s next reporting process under the
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New Report Finds Lesotho’s Judiciary Lacks Independence
Aug 29 2012 - 5:01pm
Lesotho is a small landlocked country entirely surrounded by South Africa. Since gaining independence from British rule in 1960 Lesotho
has faced manifold challenges towards achieving political stability and sustained economic growth. The population of Lesotho remains
overwhelmingly rural-agrarian and despite some economic growth, gains in GNI per capita have been small and life expectancy has
dropped. In 2011 Lesotho placed below average for countries classified by the United Nations as ‘low human development.’1 Since
transitioning from authoritarian rule in the early 1990s Lesotho has struggled to establish a stable multiparty democracy, particularly
during election periods. These challenges are compounded by the failure to fully address fundamental governance issues such as the
relationship between traditional institutions and the state.2
As is the case in all democratic states, the establishment of mechanisms of accountability is critical to political and economic
development in Lesotho. To be truly effective these institutions must span the formal and informal sector and, they must transect
horizontal and vertical dimensions of accountability.3 Policymakers and academics have increasingly turned their attention to the
foundational importance of strong, transparent and fully functional rule of law institutions to economic and political development. First
and foremost the courts’ role in resolving conflict is essential to maintenance of the rule of law. A stable and predictable investment
climate is rooted in the ability of courts to apply the law in a predictable and consistent manner. Second, in transitioning democracies the
courts can play an important role in acting as a restraint on overzealous executives, hegemonic political parties and human rights abusers.
Given the importance of rule of law to both political and economic development, it is within this context that Freedom House Southern
Africa has commissioned a report on judicial independence in Lesotho.
The Lesotho judiciary’s history as paramount defender of the rule of law is uneven. Despite being infused with a fairly robust set of
institutional protections and a history of strong personnel, the judiciary continues to face a number of challenges. These challenges relate
to three major substantive areas: 1) long-term resources constraints, 2) public perceptions of corruption and weak independence and, 3)
a hostile and unstable political environment. The goals of this report are two-fold: Part I assesses the current state of judicial
independence in Lesotho; Part II reviews the scope and type of interference experiences by the Lesotho judiciary. Finally, while the
introduction to this report provides analysis and description of the historical backdrop to contemporary Lesotho the greater part of the
analysis focuses on the last ten years (2002-2012).
The overall performance of the Lesotho judiciary exhibits no substantially serious issues related to professionalism and/or independence.
After applying the framework (see Figure 2) to Lesotho three broad weaknesses were observed:
1.Separation of Powers- Chronic underfunding and inadequate autonomy from the Ministry of Justice continues to be a serious drag on
the performance of the judiciary. Further, it undermines institutional legitimacy in the eyes of the public and weakens the morale of
2.Internal Institutional Safeguards- Perceptions of judicial independence in Lesotho are very weak. Perceived weaknesses are primarily
due to structural problems related to the appointments procedures and internal administrative structure.
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Document - Suggested recommendations to states considered in the eighth round of the Universal Periodic Review, May 2010
01 March 2010
Recommendations to the government of Lesotho
Ratification of international human rights standards
*To ratify the outstanding core international human rights treaties, in particular Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant
on Civil and Political Rights, aiming at abolition of the death penalty, and the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on
Economic, Social and Cultural Rights recently adopted by the UN General Assembly.
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Crisis calls for Bill's swift passage
Mothers giving birth are dying while the debate about standards in the public sector continues.
by Agnes Odhimabo, Liesl Gerntholtz
Published in: Mail & Guardian
November 2, 2012
Busisiwe was in labour for 36 hours but was turned away twice from a community health centre. When she was finally admitted, she
gave birth to a boy and was discharged six hours later.
Two days later she returned, feeling weak. Again she was turned away by the same nurses. She died the next day at the general hospital.
"I felt the nurses were careless with my sister because they knew she was [HIV] positive and sick. They did not act quickly to save
her," said Busisiwe's sister, Thuliswa. "I did not complain because I did not know where to go."
Busisiwe's story was only one of many tragic stories we heard while researching a report about maternal mortality. But it is a prime
illustration of why the National Health Amendment Bill, published in January last year, needs to become law, and quickly.
The Bill is designed to address key shortcomings in the monitoring and oversight of the health system. Among other things, it would
make several changes to the office of standards compliance, tasked with developing quality standards for the health sector and
At a briefing about the Bill, more than 18 months after it was published, the health department told the portfolio committee on health that
current health standards were "unacceptably low".
South Africa's maternal mortality ratio, the internationally accepted measure of the number of women who die from pregnancy-related
causes, provides a stark illustration of just how low the standards can be. At one point, the health department released data that indicated
the ratio had increased tenfold since 1998. The figures were hotly contested and the department convened a committee that, after
considering all the data, revised the ratio to 310 per 100 000 live births – it had doubled in the past decade.
But the Gauteng department of health announced some good news last week: it said it had reduced the ratio from 167.7 per 100 000 live
births between 2005 and 2007 to 145 between 2008 and 2010. This is a significant reduction.
But South Africa's ratio remains unacceptably high and it is one of only six countries in Africa that has failed to make progress in
reducing maternal deaths and one of five that has, in fact, experienced an increase. The others are Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Botswana and
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PM THABANE'S INAUGURAL SPEECH
8 JUNE 2012
I need not remind anyone that over the past half century since Lesotho attained political independence, our country has gone through
successive periods of turbulence and agony in the political sphere. Our people have worked very hard to have the rule of law, peace and
stability that we enjoy today. We must build on the achievements that we have already made to further consolidate peace and stability in
our country and to deepen the roots of democracy and good governance.
Our elections in 2002 ushered in a new era of political accommodation and inclusiveness, which was embodied in the new electoral
model that we adopted. That model contributed significantly to the advancement of peace and stability in Lesotho. We have continued to
improve on that model and to remove some of its shortcomings. The current electoral legislation has, once again, modified and improved
in various ways on the electoral model that we use in Lesotho. It has, in particular, also introduced a system that guarantees increased
representation of women in parliament.
Through our collective effort we have succeeded in taking our country to higher level of political maturity. In effect, we have
transformed the nature of politics in our country. We must build on this success to transform our country’s economic situation. The
challenges that confront us as a nation today are many and varied. While we may define them in different political dialects, in reality,
the challenges that confront us as we begin the 8th Parliament of His Majesty’s government, are the same and common to all of us.
Poverty eradication, shared economic growth and employment creation;
Building of effective governance institutions in the public and private sectors;
Infrastructure development for facilitation of trade and access to services;
Investment in the education of our people and transformation of skills development, particularly among youth and women;
Increasing access to improved health facilities in order to reduce maternal and child mortality,as well as vulnerability to pandemics
such as HIV and AIDS;
Improvement of agriculture, food security and preparedness for natural disasters, particularly in the wake of the consequences of
In addressing these challenges, the consolidation of peace and deepening of the roots of democracy and good governance must remain
our top priority because without peace and good governance, there can be no development.
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11 June 2011 Last updated at 13:34 CET
Lesotho Ombudsman Confers With Police
By Daily Guide
THE OMBUDSMAN of Lesotho, Matsoana Fanana, has called on the Ghana Police Service to have an insight into the operations of one
of its core units, the Police Intelligence Professional Standards Bureau (PIPS).
She was accompanied by the principal investigator at her outfit, Motselisi Makhele. The visit was part of a familiarization tour of the
The delegation also visited the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, and also observed proceedings at Parliament, CHRAJ head
office and the Amasaman Municipal CHRAJ Office.
The Director General of Research and Planning, DCOP David Asante-Appeatu, who sat in the stead of the Inspector General of Police
(IGP), said the public had given the police the authority to perform a task on its behalf, adding that police were therefore accountable to
the people in the performance of their duties.
In this vein, PIPS was established in 1978, but was then called Special Police Command, to serve as a check, among other things, on
the professional standards of personnel, until 2005 when the name evolved to PIPS.
The director general was highly elated for the visit and hoped that the two-man-delegation would by the end of their visit, gather enough
knowledge to their satisfaction.
The Director General of PIPS, DCOP Timothy Ashiley, took the visitors through the core business of his unit and outlined some of it
successes and aspirations.
He noted, among many things, that the relocation of the PIPS office was being considered as the Police Headquarters was intimidating
for the civilians who mostly visited the unit with complaints about personnel of the service.
The IGP, he noted, had already approved the recommendation to relocate the office, adding that very soon, an office space outside the
headquarters would be allocated to PIPS for its operations. He also mentioned that some civilians would be brought on board to assist,
explaining that this would make it more comfortable and easier for complainants to lodge their complaints.
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Water deal irks Lesotho's new rulers
07 Dec 2012
South Africa has been accused of putting undue pressure on a weak government to extract an unfair deal. Caswell Tlali
Controversy continues to stalk the bilateral Lesotho Highlands water scheme because Lesotho's new coalition government wants to
scrap "prejudicial" sections of the country's agreement with South Africa governing the construction of the proposed R9-billion Polihali
The 1999 agreement, unearthed by the Lesotho Times last week, clearly reflects South Africa's desire for greater control over the crucial
infrastructural project, which supplies water to industrial and domestic consumers in Gauteng and beyond.
It was signed when the Lesotho government was almost paralysed and South African troops were still stationed in the kingdom after the
invasion sponsored by the Southern African Development Community (SADC) a year earlier.
Sources in the Lesotho Cabinet told the Mail & Guardian last week that the government was uncomfortable with the agreement its
predecessor had signed with South Africa on the second phase of the giant water project.
But Timothy Thahane, Lesotho's water affairs minister, would only say that his government was studying the agreement and that it had
not been ratified.
However, Lesotho Prime Minister Thomas Thabane told a media conference after meeting President Jacob Zuma in October that he had
asked him to allow some aspects of the project to be reviewed.
Phase two will see the construction of Polihali Dam in Lesotho's Mokhotlong district, which will augment the water in Lesotho's Katse
Dam, from where it will be channelled to the Vaal River.
The 1999 agreement followed a post-election crisis in Lesotho when opposition parties rejected the poll results and the armed forces
mutinied. The army commander and other senior officers fled to South Africa. Accepting the argument that Lesotho had become
ungovernable, SADC voted to send in troops under South Africa's leadership.
The first warplane that entered Lesotho on September 22 1998 headed straight for the Katse Dam. Sixteen Lesotho soldiers guarding the
facility were killed and replaced by South Africans.
South African and Botswana forces remained in Lesotho for three years, during which the 1999 agreement was concluded.
A senior government official, who asked not to be named, told the M&G that Lesotho was "still recovering from the embarrassment" of
the political chaos that climaxed in the invasion. "At that time Lesotho did not have a strong voice at the negotiating table, with South
Africa or any other country. Political instability had rendered us powerless," he said.
Thamae Lenka of the Maseru-based Transformation Resource Centre, a local human rights advocacy organisation, said Lesotho had a
"fragmented, indecisive leadership that was vulnerable to external pressure" and was "too feeble to stand up to South Africa".
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King since 7 February 1996
Prince Lerotholi Seeiso
Heir Apparent since 18 April 2007