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Lesotho Leaders Agree to End Tension, Stalemate

  • Peter Clottey

Army personnel man outside the military headquarters in Maseru, Lesotho, Aug. 31, 2014.

Army personnel man outside the military headquarters in Maseru, Lesotho, Aug. 31, 2014.

The executive secretary of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) says Lesotho’s rival leaders have agreed on a framework aimed at resolving the sharp disagreement that led to the alleged attempt to overthrow Prime Minister Thomas Thabane’s government last weekend.

Stergomena Lawrence Tax says the regional bloc will soon name a “high-profile” facilitator to monitor the agreement signed by the Lesotho leaders in a bid to restore law and order, constitutional rule and resolve tension in the Southern African country.
“They agreed on two things. That SADC would support them in ensuring that there is security and peace in the country. They would also appoint a facilitator, which would enable them to make sure that they implemented the Windhoek declaration, and basically to remove the prorogation of parliament,” said Tax.

She said the current security situation is “calm and normalizing” following the alleged attempt to overthrow the government last weekend.

Tax said according to the stipulations of the agreement, the leaders in Lesotho would have to come up with a timetable in order to re-open parliament this month.

“Our expectations and belief is that they are going to adhere to what they have agreed to, and that being the case, we believe that the political situation in the country is going to be normalized. Once that has taken place, obviously the security situation is also going to be normal,” said Tax.

“As SADC…we are there and we are ready to support the kingdom to make sure that all the challenges are addressed in an amicable manner and in a peaceful manner,” she said.

Rivals in the coalition government accused the Prime minister of a power grab after Mr. Thabane suspended parliament, apparently to avoid a vote of no confidence.

But in an interview with VOA, Prime Minister Thabane said corruption charges against a prominent member of the government, who he says is seen as a hero, led to the alleged attempt on his life.