BASOTHO Action Party (BAP) leader, Nqosa Mahao, has promised to restore law and order if his party is voted into power in the forthcoming elections.
Addressing hundreds of supporters in their blue, maroon and yellow party regalia at Thaba Phatšoa, Leribe, this week, the former National University of Lesotho vice-chancellor said the BAP was the only party with the political will to stand firm against Lesotho’s high crime rates.
He said his government would not sit and watch as Basotho continue to murder each other daily.
‘’We cannot afford to fold our arms while Basotho kill each other for whatever reason,” Prof Mahao said.
“Our government will restore law and order as a priority.”
A BAP government would also train chiefs on how to execute their duties more effectively. It will also pay traditional leaders decent salaries to discourage them from engaging in crime, Prof Mahao said.
“We will set up community policing forums to jointly work with chiefs to fight crime in their respectively communities.”
A BAP government would ensure that the police are given adequate resources such as vehicles, horses and uniforms to boost their morale. The police will also get further training to equip them with the latest skills to fight various forms of crime.
As part of these efforts, his government will build police stations in every constituency so that criminals have no hideout.
“National Security Service members will be deployed in communities to prevent crime and tip the police off on any possible criminal activities,” Prof Mahao said.
Lesotho’s judiciary was politically tainted, he said, vowing to reform it to ensure that it delivered justice without partiality and nepotism.
“We will also recruit more judges to reduce the backlog of cases that our judiciary is battling with,’’ he said.
Lesotho is battling a backlog of about 4000 cases in the High Court alone.
During this women’s month, Prof Mahao said he was paying tribute to Basotho women for their resilience in the face of the many different challenges they were facing.
Celebrated annually in August, women’s month was originally aimed at commemorating the spirited fight by South African women against repressive apartheid laws in the 1950s.
Now women’s month commemorates women in general, including Basotho women’s fight for emancipation from gender-based violence, rape, killings and other socio-cultural and economic challenges.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), Mahlape Morai, last week bemoaned the escalating murders of women and other forms of gender-based violence (GBV). She described them as a shameful stain on the country’s image.
She made the remarks while addressing female police officers in Maseru who had marched in commemoration of the late Martha Rasekoai. Ms Rasekoai was employed at the Development Planning ministry. Her mangled body was found at a rivulet in Ha-Tšolo, Maseru last month. No one has been arrested to date in connection with her gruesome killing.