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Scott ends hunger strike

 

Tefo Tefo

HIGH Court judge Justice Teboho Moiloa on Tuesday ordered double ritual murder suspect Lehlohonolo Scott to end his two week hunger strike.

Scott began the strike on 13 March to protest alleged ill-treatment in the Maseru Central Prison where he claimed among other things, that he was held in solitary confinement and not allowed to mingle with other inmates.

He remains in custody as his trial continues in the High Court.

He faces murder charges along with his mother, ‘Malehlohonolo Scott, for allegedly killing two Koalabata boys five years ago.

He also complained that he did not have access to reading material that includes newspapers.

However, Justice Moiloa ordered Scott to end his hunger strike saying he was working with the latter’s lawyer, Advocate Thulo Hoeane to address his alleged concerns.

“You must eat,” Justice Moiloa told Scott.

“We are working hand-in-hand with your lawyer to solve the problem and there is no need for you to raise your hand because we are dealing with that problem.

“You must eat and be fit for the trial,” said the judge.

This was after Scott had raised his hand to signal to the judge that he wanted to say something.

“My Lord, I am asking for your protection from the ill treatment I get in prison, Scott said, adding, “This has gone to the extent that I am now on the 13th day of my hunger strike in protest of such treatment.”

It was then that the judge interjected and told him that the matter was being dealt with.

Justice Moiloa postponed the case to 2 May 2017 due to ‘Malehlohonolo’s illness.

“I have seen a medical report to the effect that ‘Malehlohonolo is not well.

“In the circumstances we cannot proceed now and I would like us select dates to compensate the time that has already been lost,” Justice Moiloa said.

The case will proceed from 2 to 5 May 2017; 24 to 28 July 2017 and from 15 to 18 August 2017.

Justice Moiloa initially postponed the case last Tuesday and ordered ‘Malehlohonolo to go for medical examination to determine if she would be fit to stand trial on Tuesday this week.

Last week ‘Malehlohonolo was unable to stand on her own in court but had to be supported by her co-accused son to the extent that the judge ordered her to sit down as he spoke to her.

Her relatives helped her into a vehicle after the adjournment of court proceedings.

Scott (30) and his mother ’Malehlohonolo (60) are accused of the murder of fellow Koalabata residents Moholobela Seetsa (13) and Mohata (22) in January and June 2012 respectively.

The Scotts were arrested on 12 July 2012 following the discovery of Seetsa and Mohata’s mutilated bodies in Koalabata. The mutilation of the bodies led to speculation the two had been killed for ritual purposes.

Scott has also previously complained of unfair treatment, claiming in his December 2016 court testimony that prior to his arrest, the police used unprintable insults depicting his mother’s private parts while they allegedly manhandled and accused him of being a member of the opposition All Basotho Convention (ABC) political party.

In addition to murder, Scott also faces the charge of unlawful escape from Maseru Central Prison on 14 October 2012 while awaiting trial.

After almost two years on the run, Scott was arrested in Durban on 6 April 2014 and lost his fight against extradition in the Verulam Magistrate’s Court on 5 May last year. He was extradited to Lesotho on 21 October 2015, where he remains in custody.

For her part, ’Malehlohonolo was released on stringent bail conditions in August 2013.

 

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