PROMINENT businesswoman and pastor ’Maposholi Leonia Mosothoane has lashed out at the police for sending heavily armed members of the Special Support Unit (SSU) to raid her home on Tuesday morning.
The Lesotho Times crew visited Ms Mosothoane’s home in Lithabaneng on the same day and observed more than 20 heavily armed police from the SSU stationed around her house and along the Main South route. The free flow of traffic was also disturbed by curious onlookers.
People were barred from entering the house and those who had smart phones and cameras were told to delete the footage. At some point, pepper spray was used to disperse to crowds.
Ms Mosothoane said her house was turned upside down in the search for guns and uniforms. Her tightly secured store room was forced open with a grinder and extra manpower was brought in to unload the container which was packed with floor tiles and other building material.
Samples of police and army uniforms were confiscated but no guns were found.
An irate Ms Mosothoane told this publication the raid came after she had protested to the Deputy Principal Secretary (DPS) of police over what she believed to be irregularities in the awarding of a tender to supply police uniform in which she lost.
“I confronted the DPS and told him that they had awarded the tender to politicians. I’m now perceived as an enemy and got raided all because I stated that this is corruption.
“I have been providing police with uniforms for the past 12 years, where were these people (who won the tender) all these years?” Ms Mosothoane asked rhetorically.
“The DPS told me that they had already awarded the tender through selective tendering. He even threatened me, accusing me of making serious allegations that could land me in court. This was after I told him that the tender had been illegally awarded to politicians. He told me to retract my statement if I didn’t want any trouble,” Ms Mosothoane said.
She claimed the tender was won by people who had no licence and tax clearance certificates “and therefore did not qualify.”
“When they realised that their people did not qualify, they decided to close the tender bid on the day of submission. They promised to contact us but never did so.”
Mosothoane has supplied uniforms to the police, army and Correctional Services since 2004. She was the Chairperson of Boliba Savings and Credit from 2007-2013 and also chairperson of the Private Sector Foundation of Lesotho in 2012. She was ordained as a pastor of Sanctuary Salvation in November 2015.