US salutes Ba­sotho for peace­ful poll

Lesotho Times - - News - Lim­pho Sello

the United States gov­ern­ment has con­grat­u­lated Ba­sotho on the peace­ful con­duct of the 28 Fe­bru­ary gen­eral elec­tions. In a state­ment re­leased on Mon­day, US Sec­re­tary of State, John Kerry, said he hoped the polls would move Le­sotho be­yond a pe­riod of po­lit­i­cal un­cer­tainty and strengthen na­tional unity.

“the US em­bassy de­ployed 18 Amer­i­can and Ba­sotho staff as ob­servers to six of Le­sotho’s 10 dis­tricts, where they wit­nessed the open­ing, vot­ing, closing, and count­ing in ap­prox­i­mately 80 polling sta­tions,” said Mr Kerry.

“ev­ery vote counts and ev­ery vote was a victory for Le­sotho.”he lauded the elec­tions as es­sen­tial to pro­vid­ing a foun­da­tion for an “ef­fec­tive, accountable gov­ern­ment that serves the needs of the peo­ple”.

“We com­mend Le­sotho’s In­de­pen­dent elec­toral Com­mis­sion (IEC) for or­gan­is­ing a pro­fes­sional and well-run poll, es­pe­cially in light of the com­pressed timeline,” Mr Kerry said, urg­ing all can­di­dates and po­lit­i­cal par­ties to ac­cept the elec­tion re­sults and to call on their sup­port­ers to do so as well.

He also paid trib­ute to the South­ern African Devel­op­ment Com­mu­nity (SADC) for sup­port­ing Le­sotho’s peace­ful elec­tion.

“We wel­come SADC’S on­go­ing com­mit­ment to help­ing Le­sotho strengthen its demo­cratic in­sti­tu­tions and rule of law,” he said

“the United States re­mains com­mit­ted to our strong part­ner­ship with Le­sotho and to achiev­ing our shared ob­jec­tives of im­proved health, shared pros­per­ity, and ef­fec­tive and accountable gov­ern­ment.”

Mean­while, United na­tions Sec­re­tary-gen­eral Ban Ki-moon also com­mended Ba­sotho for hold­ing the polls in a peace­ful man­ner.

He sin­gled out the IEC and SADC for praise for lead­ing “ef­forts to peace­fully re­solve po­lit­i­cal chal­lenges in the coun­try”.

Mr Ban also reaf­firmed the UN’S “readi­ness” to sup­port ef­forts in Le­sotho “to con­sol­i­date democ­racy and ad­vance jus­tice and devel­op­ment for the ben­e­fit of all the peo­ple of the coun­try.”

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