Has Lesotho reached its Rubicon?
At this summit Lesotho was told in no uncertain terms that if it did not implement, suspension would be recommended to the full SADC Summit in August this year.
SADC Executive Secretary Visits Lesotho In a move perhaps demonstrating SADC’S annoyance with Lesotho in not doing anything to implement its resolutions, the regional body dispatched its top official, the Executive Secretary Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax, to Lesotho to assess the progress in regard to implementing the resolutions. Publicly the Dr Tax made some acknowledgments that there was indeed some progress.
However, hard on the heels of her departure, perhaps after reporting to the SADC chair, and SADC chairperson President Ian Khama of Botswana, where SADC has its headquarters, followed the strongly worded invitation to Lesotho, where the resolutions were now referred to as “Decisions”.
The Explosive Invitation to Summit At this juncture, one will be excused for relying on a mere conjecture as I do not have all the relevant surrounding factors behind SADC con- vening the extra-ordinary Double Troika Summit scheduled for 28th June, in Gaborone, Botswana.
My suspicion that this is diplomatic language is an explosive invite derives from the fact that it has now been close to a year since the demise of General Mahao.
SADC and other international organisations including the European Union, African Union and the United Nations, have been urging the Lesotho government to implement the SADC recommendations, in addition to the security, public service, and constitutional reforms as contained in the SOMILES re- port (i.e. the SADC Mission to Lesotho).
To date, my own dispassionate observation has been that not a single recommendation or reform has been implemented.
At least, no tangible attempts at implementing the decisions have been embarked upon.
I may hasten to add, not even the much-vaunted roadmap at least with timelines, has been submitted by government of Lesotho to SADC as promised.
This is probably what has provoked the ire of SADC to demand the submission of a progress report by the 17 June.
It also goes to explain why the regional body convened an extraordinary Summit “to consider the political and security situation in the Kingdom of Lesotho, specifically the implementation of SADC decisions”.
It will be remembered that SADC had earlier hinted that it would disengage and suspend its activities in Lesotho if the Kingdom does not implement its decisions.
This summit therefore clearly is the Rubicon for Lesotho. It is a point of no return that pitches the country with the regional body, in particular, and the world, in general. It is a swim or sink moment for Lesotho.