THE Deputy Prime Minister and leader of the Alliance of Democrats, Monyane Moleleki, will on 30 June 2019 be conferred with an Honorary Doctorate degree by the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations (GSD).
The conferment of the doctorate is in recognition of Mr Moleleki’s role in social and political development in Lesotho.
According to AD spokesperson, Thuso Litjobo, the honour comes after motivations by Lesotho’s Ambassador to Switzerland, Refiloe Litjobo, to the university regarding why Mr Moleleki deserves to be honoured.
“This is the man who has served this country with enthusiasm since Lesotho got its democracy in 1993, the same year in which he was first elected a Member of Parliament up to date,” Mr Litjobo said.
“He has won all elections which he contested because of his philanthropic work in his area where he has set up an orphanage which survives from his pocket.
“He has always shown love and kindness to his people and has mentored scores of Basotho youths to be leaders in different political positions including ambassadors, principal secretaries, political leaders, members of parliament and ministers.”
Mr Litjobo also lauded Mr Moleleki for always striving for unity and peace in his leadership.
“He is the one who went all out and initiated the safe return of All Basotho Convention (ABC) leader, who is also the Prime Minister Thomas Thabane, leader of Reformed Congress of Lesotho (RCL) Keketso Rantšo and Basotho National Party (BNP) leader Thesele Maseribane in early 2017,” Mr Litjobo said.
Mr Litjobo told the Lesotho Times that the approval of conferment comes after a series of motivational presentations about Mr Moleleki’s strides in shaping Lesotho’s political sphere by the ambassador.
“It was not easy to convince them just by word of mouth overnight, it was a journey hence a series of meetings and presentations had to be made.
“Prior to this award, His Excellency Refiloe Litjobo had tried it with the Zurich University only to be turned down,” Mr Litjobo said.
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In its letter addressed to Mr Moleleki dated 7 December, a copy of which the Lesotho Times is in possession of reads: “I am writing with great pleasure to convey to you a decision of the board, faculty and students of the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations”.
“Geneva School of Diplomacy has decided to award you, Minister should you decide to accept the University degree of Doctor of International Relations (DIR) honoris causa.
“The award is based, sir, on your outstanding service to your country over so many years. In the course of your career you have served as Minister of Natural Resources, Minister of Information, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Police, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office and today Deputy Prime Minister.
“…Your whole career sir, is an outstanding and inspiring example of your dedication to good governance, decent living for all your country’s people and democracy,” concludes the letter signed by (Dr) Colum de Sales Murphy who is the President of the GSD.
Previous recipients of similar awards are Prince Albert of Monaco, Ambassador of China to the United Nations (UN) Li Baodong, former President of Switzerland Adolf Ogi, Baroness Nadine de Rothschild, the former Head of State of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) Mikhail Gorbachev and the President of Timor Laste and Nobel Prize for Peace winner, José Ramos-Horta.
The award ceremony will be held at the school campus on Sunday 30 June.
Ambassador Litjobo has however, been at the receiving end of vitriol from Basotho on social media who accuse him of dereliction of duty by focusing on securing an honorary doctorate for his party leader instead of sourcing investors for the country.
Efforts to get a comment on the allegations from Ambassador Litjobo were fruitless before the time of going to print.