MASERU — The Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) chairperson, Thabang Pheko, says Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili’s statements on Sunday destabilised the party.
“On Sunday, he was supposed to have meticulously and gently addressed errors of each faction in such a way that would make LCD members feel more united than ever before,” Pheko said on Tuesday.
He was reacting to a scathing attack Mosisili launched on the executive committee on Sunday after the LCD failed to hold a special conference.
The conference which was meant to decide the executive’s fate was cancelled after a dispute over delegates.
This was after one of the two factions in the ruling party accused the executive committee of trying to rig the outcome of the conference by approving supportive delegates.
Mosisili said the executive committee and the credentials committee which was vetting the delegates had failed to organise the conference.
He also said he was taken aback when the “credentials committee handpicked people to masquerade as conference delegates”.
Mosisili said the executive committee barred delegates approved by sub-branches, branches and constituencies from attending the conference.
“Where were these handpicked people coming from?” Mosisili quipped during the impromptu rally that was allegedly boycotted by all the executive committee members. Aren’t delegates supposed to come from you at the sub-branches and branches?” he said.
“Who are these people who are selected from the top not from the bottom as required by the LCD constitution?”
Mosisili followed up on that attack by firing three cabinet ministers on Tuesday.
Although he did not give reasons some party officials said the decision was triggered by the failed conference.
Pheko said he believed Mosisili’s statements on Sunday had destabilised the party.
He said he did not have qualms with Mosisili’s decision to fire ministers because “it is his prerogative to do so”.
“The Sunday remarks by our leader should be blamed for destabilising the LCD not the executive committee’s failure to hold the special conference or his decision to release ministers from duty,” Pheko said.
“He has the prerogative to make appointments in the cabinet and to release them from their ministerial duties and that has nothing to do with the party’s stability.”
Pheko said if Mosisili’s decision to sack the ministers was based on the party executive committee’s failure to hold the special conference he should have also sacked Foreign Affairs Minister Mohlabi Tsekoa, Deputy Prime Minister Lesao Lehohla and Justice Minister Mpeo Mahase-Moiloa.
“All ministers who are members of the LCD executive committee should have been released if the Prime Minister based his reasons on the failure to hold the special conference.
“Even he too is to be blamed for the national executive committee’s failure because he is a member,” he said.
Concerning the expiry of the executive committee’s term Pheko said the party’s constitution does not allow a leadership vacuum.
“This executive committee will not be removed by anybody or anything except by the general conference,” he said.
“Until such conference is held and a new leadership is elected, this executive committee will remain as it is.”