LESOTHO Revenue Authority (LRA) has appointed Thabo Khasipe as the new commissioner-general in a move that brings to an end a year-long hunt for a suitable candidate.
The position fell vacant after former boss Thabo Letjama’s resignation last November after six years at the helm.
Advocate Realeboha Mathaba held fort while the search went on for a candidate to fill the position on a permanent basis.
Mr Khasipe is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) who previously worked for the LRA as Deputy Commissioner General from 2004 to 2007 before being appointed Lesotho’s ambassador to Kuwait.
His appointment to the LRA’s top post was confirmed last night to Lesotho Times by Finance Minister Tlohang Sekhamane.
“Mr Khasipe has been appointed as the new Commissioner-General of the Lesotho Revenue Authority,” Mr Sekhamane said.
The Finance Minister, who according to the Lesotho Revenue Authority Act of 2001, approves the appointment of the Commissioner General, said Mr Khasipe’s outstanding track record along with his experience of serving as Deputy Commissioner General at LRA were some of the factors that influenced his appointment.
“He is an excelling individual whose track record speaks for itself. That along with his experience of serving in a top post within the LRA and also serving as an ambassador are some of the factors that put him in a better position than the other candidates.
“We also expect him to find new avenues through which revenue collection can be enhanced in order to enlarge the current tax pool while also taking care not to frustrate the development of small business enterprises as they have the potential to pay bigger taxes in future,” Mr Sekhamane said.
Revenue collection is increasingly becoming an important task for the government especially now that its share from the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) revenue pool is steadily declining.
Mr Sekhamane also said Mr Khasipe was expected to address the challenge of tax evasion.
While he could not immediately confirm the exact duration of the appointment, the LRA Act states that the Commissioner General holds office for a period of three years and shall be eligible for re-appointment at the discretion of the Minister.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Mr Khasipe obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Economics at the National University of Lesotho in 1994 before enrolling at the University of Nairobi (Kenya) where he graduated with a Master’s degree in Econometrics and Quantitative Economics in 1998.
He also obtained a Master of Business Administration (MBA), Business/Commerce, General degree from the University of the Orange Free State (South Africa) in 2008.
He served as LRA’s Deputy Commissioner General Lesotho Revenue Authority from 2004 to 2007 before joining Stanlib Lesotho as General Manager from 2007 to 2008.
He was the country’s ambassador to Kuwait from 2008 to 2014 before joining DAvCap as Managing Director from 2014 to 2015.
His last appointment was to the post of Deputy Executive Secretary at Southern African Customs Union in Namibia.