Court Mar­tial jury re­vealed

Lesotho Times - - News - Keiso Mohloboli

DE­FENCE and Na­tional Se­cu­rity min­is­ter Tšeliso Mokhosi has an­nounced the jury to pre­side over the trial of 23 sol­diers de­tained at Maseru Max­i­mum Se­cu­rity Prison on al­le­ga­tions they planned to top­ple the Le­sotho De­fence Force (LDF) com­mand.

Ac­cord­ing to a “con­ven­ing or­der” the min­is­ter is­sued on Thurs­day last week, Ma­jor Gen­eral Let­soela would be Pres­i­dent of the Court Mar­tial. Ma­jor Ket­se­letso Mo­foka, Ma­jor Kamoho Ramor­it­ing, Ma­jor Tle­lima Ma­tia, and Ma­jor ‘Maretha­bile Ke­bane are the other mem­bers of the court, whose sit­ting dates were how­ever, not re­vealed in the ‘con­ven­ing or­der’.

Mr Mokhosi has also ap­pointed Jus­tice SP Hancke of South Africa as the court’s Judge Ad­vo­cate, while Ad­vo­cate R Suhr, also of South Africa, is the Pros­e­cu­tor and would be as­sisted by Ma­jor Bu­lane Sechele, Sec­ond Lieu­tenant Moeketsi Masehle and Sec­ond Lieu­tenant Man­tšo Sello.

‘Wait­ing Mem­bers’ of the court are Lieu­tenant Colonel Rapele Mphaki, Cap­tain Noa­hana Le­bona, Cap­tain Tieho Rankhone, Cap­tain Se­natla Da­mane and Cap­tain Mo­suoe Let­sie.

Reads the ‘con­ven­ing or­der’ dated 13 Au­gust 2015: “I, Mr Tšeliso Mokhosi, the Hon­ourable Min­is­ter of De­fence and Na­tional Se­cu­rity, act­ing pur­suant to the pro­vi­sions of Sec­tion 92 (1) of the Le­sotho De­fence Force Act No of 1996 (here­inafter called ‘the Act’) read with Le­sotho De­fence Force (Del­e­ga­tion of Pow­ers) Le­gal No­tice No 131/2000, do hereby con­vene the Court Mar­tial for pur­poses of try­ing, jointly, the stated and listed mem­bers of Le­sotho De­fence Force at­tached here­unto on An­nex ‘A’.

“The Court Mar­tial shall sit at the erected struc­ture near the Mil­i­tary De­ten­tion Cen­tre (com­monly known as Max­i­mum Prison) in the district of Maseru, or at any other place which I may di­rect pur­suant to the pro­vi­sions of Sec­tion 96 (2) of the Act. “I di­rect that the ac­cused be charged with: “Charge No 1 (Main Charge): Mutiny in­volv­ing the use of vi­o­lence or threat of use of vi­o­lence con­trary to Sec­tion 48 (1) (a) of the Act read with sec­tions 48 (2) and 103 (1) of the Act in the event that it is not proved that such mutiny in­volved the use of vi­o­lence or threat of vi­o­lence.

“Charge No 2 (First Al­ter­na­tive Count): Incite­mentent to com­mit mutiny in­volv­ing the use of vi­o­lence or threat of use of vi­o­lence con­trary to Sec­tion 48 (1) (b) of the Act read with sec­tions tions 48 (2) and 103 (1) of the Act in the event nt that it is not proved that such mutiny in­volvedlved the use of vi­o­lence or threat of vi­o­lence.

“Charge No3 (Sec­ond Al­ter­na­tive Count): Fail­ure to use ut­most en­deav­ours to sup­press a mutiny ny or fail­ure to report that a mutiny is tak­ingg place or is in­tended con­trary to Sec­tion 49 9 of the Act.”

The min­is­ter then en lists the jury, and notes of his choice of Prose­cu­torose­cu­tor and Judge Ad­vo­cate: “Af­ter hav­ingng con­sulted with the At­tor­ney Gen­eral in ac­cor­dance with the Act, I hereby ap­point Judge SP Hancke as Judge Ad­vo­cate of the Cour­tourt Mar­tial.

“And af­ter con­sultin­gult­ing with the Com­man­der of the Le­sotho De­fence Force re­gard­ing the ap­point­ment of the Pros­e­cu­tor, I was duly in­formed thatt the Di­rec­tor of the Le­sotho De­fence Force Le­gal Ser­vice (a.i) has au­tho­rised Ad­vo­cate R Suhr, in ac­cor­dance with the De­fence Force (Court Mar­tial) (Pro­ce­dure) Rules of 1998, to ap­pear on his be­half half as Pros­e­cu­tor at the Court Mar­tial as­sisted by Ma­jor Bu­lane Sechele, Sec­ond Lieu­tenant Moeketsi ketsi Masehle, Sec­ond Lieu­tenantt Man­tšo Sello.

“I di­rect that thee record of the pro­ceed­ings of the Court Mar­tial be trans­mit­ted to the Con­firm­ing Au­thor­ity for con­fir­ma­tion of the find­ings and sen­tence pur­suant to the pro­vi­sions of Sec­tion 109 (2) of the Act, but only in the event that the ac­cused per­sons are be­ing found guilty as charged. Thus done and signed at Maseru this 13 day of Au­gust 2015”.

Mean­while, the de­tained sol­diers’ lawyer, Ad­vo­cate Haae Phoofolo (King’s Coun­sel) last night told the Le­sotho Times he was ready to rep­re­sent his clients be­fore the Court Mar­tial.

“Lawyers rep­re­sent­ing sus­pects of mutiny are ready to go be­fore a Court Mar­tial any time but we do not know the dates yet. How­ever, this ‘con­ven­ing or­der’ means it will be called soon.

“But it will be con­tra­dic­tory for the Court Mar­tial to pro­ceed side by side with the SADC Com­mis­sion of In­quiry be­cause they are all ju­di­cial bod­ies in­ves­ti­gat­ing the same thing. If the out­come of the Court Mar­tial and the Com­mis­sion of In­quiry con­tra­dict, surely there will be chaos in this coun­try. It was rea­son­able for the SADC Dou­ble Troika sum­mit of 3 July 2015 to sus­pend the pro­ceed­ings of the Court Mar­tial while the Com­mis­sion of In­quiry is do­ing its job,” Adv Phoofolo (KC) said.

Ac­cord­ing to doc­u­ments in our pos­ses­sion, the sol­diers set to ap­pear be­fore the Court Mar­tial are Bri­gadier Mareka, Bri­gadier Poqa Mo­toa, Colonel Ste­mere, Colonel Kolisang, Ma­jor Makhetha, Cap­tain Chaka, Sec­ond Lieu­tenant Mo­hasi, Sergeant Mokhobo, Sergeant Se­makale, Sergeant Lekhabun­yane, Cor­po­ral Mokhoro, Cor­po­ral Let­si­lane, Cor­po­ral Lipoto, Cor­po­ral Manaka, Cor­po­ral Mo­hat­lane, Cor­po­ral Chele, Cor­po­ral Mot­seko, Lance Cor­po­ral Jobo, Lance Cor­po­ral Molefi, Lance Cor­po­ral Makhooane, Pri­vate Pama, Pri­vate Bolofo and Pri­vate Ral­itlemo. The sol­diers were ar­rested by the LDF be­tween May and June this year and have been in de­ten­tion ever since.

Pres­i­dent of the Court Mar­tial Ma­jor Gen­eral Let­soela

Min­is­ter of De­fence and na­tional se­cu­rity tšeliso Mokhosi.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Lesotho

© PressReader. All rights reserved.