We will con­cede de­feat: ABC

Lesotho Times - - News - Le­tuka Chafotsa and Keiso Mohloboli

ALL Ba­sotho Con­ven­tion ( ABC) sec­re­tary gen­eral, Sa­monyane Nt­sekele, last night said his party would con­cede de­feat if it fails to woo other par­ties into an al­liance in the next two weeks.

Mr Nt­sekele also said party leader and out­go­ing prime min­is­ter, Thomas Tha­bane, would per­son­ally ac­cept the re­sults and ad­dress ABC sup­port­ers to urge them to em­brace the out­come if the ABC failed to woo other par­ties to its side.

Even though Demo­cratic Congress (DC) leader Pakalitha Mo­sisili and the Le­sotho Congress for Democ­racy (LCD)’S Mo­thetjoa Mets­ing an­nounced a coali­tion with a ma­jor­ity 65 seats yes­ter­day, in­clud­ing other smaller par­ties in the 120-mem­ber par­lia­ment, Mr Nt­sekele said the legal time­frame to form a coali­tion was 14 days and things could change within that pe­riod.

“The 14 days are not over and we can still talk to other par­ties to form a coali­tion notwith­stand­ing what the oth­ers have an­nounced. Par­ties can still al­ter al­le­giances within this pe­riod and it re­mains pos­si­ble to cre­ate any coali­tion.

“If af­ter 14 days we don’t mas­ter a ma­jor­ity, we will ac­cept any out­come.”

The ABC won 46 of the 120 par­lia­men­tary seats, while the Demo­cratic Congress (DC) led with 47. The Le­sotho Congress for Democ­racy (LCD), and Ba­sotho Na­tional Party had 12 and seven seats, re­spec­tively.

All in all, the congress par­ties, in­clud­ing the Ba­sotho Congress Party (BCP) and the Mare­mat­lou Free­dom Party (MFP), who won a seat apiece, have 61 seats, a spec­tre that makes it an up­hill task for the ABC to over­turn the coali­tion an­nounced by Dr Mo­sisili yes­ter­day.

“What I can as­sure you is that if it be­comes clear that we can­not form a coali­tion, my leader, Dr Tha­bane, will ac­cept the re­sults and def­i­nitely an­nounce his de­ci­sion to ABC sup­port­ers and Ba­sotho at large in his own time,” Mr Nt­sekele said.

The ABC sec­re­tary gen­eral, who won the Tsikoane con­stituency, ad­mit­ted that his party had so far been un­suc­cess­ful in get­ting other par­ties with which to form an al­liance.

“Af­ter the an­nounce­ment of re­sults by the In­de­pen­dent Elec­toral Com­mis­sion (IEC), the ABC, like other par­ties, started to try and in­flu­ence other par­ties to form a coali­tion but failed to reach the ex­pected num­bers.

“We only suc­ceeded to have the Ba­sotho Na­tional Party and Re­formed Congress of Le­sotho,” Mr Nt­sekele said.

How­ever, he em­pha­sised that the die was not cast un­til af­ter the ex­piry of 14 days. The ABC could still cob­ble up the num­bers within that pe­riod, he said, with­out in­di­cat­ing how that was real­is­ti­cally pos­si­ble in light of Dr Mo­sisili’s seem­ingly unas­sail­able coali­tion.

Mr Nt­sekele nev­er­the­less said the Popular Front for Democ­racy (PFD) which has two seats, had not signed Dr Mo­sisili’s coali­tion pact de­spite an an­nounce­ment that it was part of his coali­tion.

“The PFD has not signed up to the alli-

ance of the congress par­ties and may con­sider work­ing with us. But if the PFD de­cides to take the op­por­tu­nity of go­ing with the congress al­liance, the ABC won’t bear any grudge,” he said.

He de­nied al­le­ga­tions that Dr Tha­bane had or­dered the ABC to chal­lenge the re­sults of Machache con­stituency won by DC deputy leader Monyane Moleleki say­ing there was no rea­son to dis­pute the vote.

Mean­while, RCL leader Keketso Ran­tšo says she is grate­ful that her new party man­aged to get two seats within just two months of be­ing formed be­fore the week­end’s snap elec­tions.

“We thank all Ba­sotho who voted for the RCL and en­abled us to have th­ese two seats within two months of our for­ma­tion. We be­lieve with more time, we could have done even bet­ter….,” Ms Rantso told the Le­sotho Times.

“The elec­tions were smooth, free and fair and we ac­cept the re­sults.”

Ms Ran­tšo con­grat­u­lated those who had won the right to form gov­ern­ment and urged them to put Ba­sotho first be­fore their own per­sonal in­ter­ests.

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