ABC attacks government over Tšosane
THE Swazi government on Monday withdrew two vehicles issued to suspended Chief Justice Michael Ramodibedi for official use.
However, the vehicles had not been removed from Justice Ramodibedi’s home by yesterday because the former Lesotho Court of Appeal president would not open the gate to his residence, which has remained locked since a warrant for his arrest was issued on 17 April 2015.
Justice Ramodibedi faces a raft of charges related to abuse of power, but has refused to surrender to the country’s law-enforcement authorities. He has not given a reason for this defiance.
Last week, the Swazi government suspended Justice Ramodibedi pending a Judicial Service Commission (JSC) inquiry, while also withholding the arrest warrant.
But the 70-year-old still refused to come out of his residence, with ALL Basotho Convention (ABC) deputy leader, Tlali Khasu, has expressed concern about government’s “silence” over the fatal shooting of prominent businessman Thabiso Tšosane last Saturday.
Mr Tšosane was shot dead in Ha Tsolo as he ferried his workers home at around 8:30pm. No arrests have been made in connection with the killing, with the police yesterday telling the Lesotho Times investigations were in progress.
Addressing a media conference at Parliament Building yesterday, Mr Khasu said the ABC National Executive Committee felt it was necessary for the government to make an official statement about Mr Tšosane’s death and allay the nation’s fears regarding their security.
Mr Khasu added Mr Tšosane was also providing employment for Basotho and helping less-privileged members of society, hence the need for government “to say something” about his death and what was being done to bring his killers to justice.
“It has been four days now since the tragic murder of Mr Tšosane, but the government is silent over the issue. It is shocking that the government has said nothing about his death when he was contributing so much to the economic wellbeing of this country,” Mr Khasu said.
Mr Khasu also said ABC members were concerned at the rate entrepreneurs affiliated to the party were being robbed and also the death threats they have been receiving since 1 May 2015.
Mr Tšosane was also a staunch member of the ABC, but his generosity knew no political bounds, Mr Khasu added.
“It is government’s responsibility to protect every citizen of this country, which is why it is a shame that Basotho are being attacked because of their political beliefs,” he said.
“We can give clear examples of prominent ABC members who were murdered and their killers never arrested. We are afraid that Mr Tšosane’s death might also be unresolved just like the killings of Lephatšoe Lebajoa, who was popularly known as ‘Selomo’ in famo music circles, as well as Sello Machakela.
“We can’t also overlook the issue of our party member, Mr Refiloe Matekane, who is the principal secretary in the Ministry of Police, whose house was broken into on Sunday a few days after his police security had been removed by the government.
“This cannot be allowed to go on and like we said, the government has not shown the expected urgency in addressing these concerns.”
Contacted for comment last night, Public Works and Transport deputy minister, Mok- hele Moletsane, who is a member of the Democratic Congress, dismissed the ABC’S claims that government had been silent over Mr Tšosane’s death.
“It’s not true that government has not commented on Mr Tšosane’s death. The condolences were passed through the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, and I was there at his home on Monday to do just that,” Mr Moletsane said.
Mr Moletsane further said Mr Tšosane’s death had come as a shock to the government as the Minister of Public Works and Transport, Tšoeu Mokeretla, was preparing to meet him over issues afflicting the public transport
Lesotho sector. Mr Tšosane owned several taxis and buses and was the public relations officer of the Maseru Star Taxi Association.
“Mr Tšosane was very knowledgeable about the industry and the ministry needed his expertise for the growth of transport businesses in our country,” he said.
Mr Moletsane also said it was unfortunate that he was jeered by ABC supporters when he visited Mr Tšosane’s family in Sehlabeng on Monday.
“I went there not only as a minister but also a personal friend. However, I was not under any pressure or frightened by the jeering,” Mr Moletsane said.
ABC deputy leader Tlali Khasu, flanked by ABC MPS, addresses a media conference at Parliament Building yesterday.
the late Thabiso Tšosane