Koro-Koro ups the stakes over Mahao

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’Marafaele Mohloboli

THE beleaguered Koro-Koro constituency committee has launched a broadside at All Basotho Convention (ABC) Youth League president, Tšoloane Maphasa, accusing him of not being a bona fide card-carrying member of the party.

The constituency committee has also directed its swords at party secretary-general Samonyane Ntsekele going as far as describing him as a “boy”.

The suspended constituency committee spewed its bile on Sunday at a rally at Ha Makhalanyane as it ups the stakes in its bid to have its candidate National University of Lesotho (NUL) Vice chancellor Professor Nqosa Mahao allowed to stand for the ABC deputy leader’s post at the party’s elective conference slated for 1 and 2 February 2019.

The constituency committee was last month suspended over its support for Professor Mahao, who was disqualified because he does not meet the criteria stipulated in the party’s constitution which requires prospective candidates for high profile posts to have “served at the party’s branch and constituency levels for at least 24 and 36 months” respectively.

But the committee is not letting it lying down.  It launched a court challenge this week against Prof Mahao’s disqualification and its suspension from all party activities.

And at the Ha Makhalanyane rally on Sunday Messrs Maphasa and Ntsekele were singled out for particular drubbing over their alleged roles in ensuring Prof Mahao’s disqualification.

The constituency committee’s spokesperson, Makalo Motsapi, raised the stakes by alleging that Mr Maphasa was a fraudlent member of the ABC as he was not in the Koro-Koro constituency’s register of members. Mr Maphasa hails from Koro-Koro constituency but Mr Motsapi insists the youth league leader is not in the constituency committee’s books.    Mr Motsapi said they were baffled that their “own” youth had betrayed Prof Mahao by using the youth league as a conduit to support his disqualification.

Mr Motsapi also took aim at party secretary general Mr Ntsekele whom he dubbed a “boy” for allegedly working “in cahoots” with the youth league in attacking the Koro-Koro constituency committee.

“We have noted with dismay and great shock that the youth league leader (Mr Maphasa) is in the forefront of the war that’s directed at us in cahoots with the youth league spokesperson Mphonyane Lebesa as well as the Secretary General of the party (Ntsekele)…,” Mr Motsapi said.

“The very same youth is not even in our register and does not hold membership with our constituency yet he claims he belongs here. We are going to investigate how he managed to get to where he is, as well as to find out who nominated him for that position during the youth league elective conference which was held in August 2017.

“We are going to get to the bottom of this especially now that we see that he is in the forefront of fighting us as a constituency.”

About Mr Ntsekele, Mr Motsapi said: “Someone should tell that boy that we won’t allow him to come and play in our constituency”.

“He shouldn’t forget that we only voted for him because he was always flashing money to buy votes.

“He (Ntsekele) should stop using the youth league and fight us own his own because he is old enough and should stop meddling in youths’ affairs,” said Mr Motsapi.

Mr Maphasa rubbished the accusations levelled against him in an interview dismissing the constituency committee’s remarks as sour grapes.

“I am not interested in what they (the constituency committee) have to say because all that they are saying is baseless and based on bitterness. Why have they been quiet all this time and why are they just making these allegations now?

“I am answerable to the Sekete branch at Ha Makhalanyane and I am a member of good standing in the ABC so I won’t even argue with them about anything. I don’t want to entertain them at all.

“I will not, under any circumstances, try to help them change the status quo to make Ntate Mahao eligible for the race. They (the constituency committee) have been suspended and therefore whatever they say is null and void. It is nonetheless quite embarrassing to hear elderly people labelling someone of my age as their enemy,” Mr Maphasa said.

Mr Lebesa also dismissed the committee’s accusations.

“I have no interest in entertaining their accusations. I am not going to be hauled into their battles for things I don’t know but I shall do what is expected of me as the youth league party spokesperson.

“Mine is to relay all communication concerning the party’s youth league as expected and I am not going to change my scope of duty just because they are uncomfortable with what I do,” Mr Lebesa said.

Mr Ntsekele refused to comment, referring all questions to party spokesman Tefo Mapesela.

“I am not going to comment on these allegations because all I do is within my powers as the secretary general of the party. Rather, talk to the party spokesperson because I don’t want to be seen to be fighting the Koro-Koro community,” Mr Ntsekele said.

Mr Mapesela could not be reached for comment.

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