By Boitumelo Koloi
MASERU — Deputy Prime Minister Mr Mothetjoa Metsing has condemned the dismissal of “any Mosotho” from the civil service on political grounds.
Addressing a Workers’ Day rally held at Pitso Ground on May 1, Mr Metsing said the expulsion of supporters of the Democratic Congress (DC) — the country’s main opposition party — from the public service simply because of political affiliation, was both “evil and unacceptable”.
Since the current government came to power two years ago, it has been accused of going on an intensive drive to purge DC supporters from the public service.
“It is unacceptable to punish anyone who is a Mosotho simply because he or she supports the opposition,” said Mr Metsing, who is also leader of the Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD).
“It would be very inhumane to fire people from their jobs only because they are members, or supporters, of the DC.”
Mr Metsing, whose party formed a coalition government with the All Basotho Convention (ABC) and Basotho National Party (BNP) led by Dr Thomas Thabane and Chief Thesele ‘Maseribane respectively, after the May 26, 2012 general election, further reassured Basotho of
quality service without discrimination.
“Government has a duty to ensure job-creation for members of its political parties just as it does for every citizen of this country,” Mr Metsing said.
“But it would be very unfortunate if those jobs were created by firing others based on their political inclination. Posts within the civil service are supposed to be
filled on merit, not political affiliation.
“Our responsibility is to create jobs for qualified and deserving persons for poverty-alleviation and not to create the dreaded poverty by firing people from their hard-earned jobs for simply being members of the DC.
“Do you mean to say that you would rejoice at the calamity that befalls a fellow Mosotho just
because they are members of the DC?
“If government is involved in the expulsion of workers on political grounds, then we are involved in very inhumane politics, not premised on the development of fellow citizens.”
Meanwhile, the DC youth leadership has dismissed Metsing’s utterances as “political rhetoric meant to win the people’s sympathy and trust”.
“We are not, in the least, moved by what this man is saying because this is not the first time he is making such utterances.
“It is also not true that he is genuinely worried about our people losing jobs since that has been the trend in the ministries under his watch,” said the DC Youth
League chairperson, Mr Thuso Litjobo.
According to Mr Litjobo, DC members working under LCD-controlled ministries had suffered the most.
“For instance, in his own ministry, which is Local Government, District Administrators have been sent packing in their numbers since he was installed the Minister. The same man has even been threatening to fire Community Councillors who defected from his party when the DC was formed,” Mr Litjobo said.
He further said Mr Metsing was “merely trying to paint himself as a better politician than his partners in the coalition government by presenting a fake sense of sympathy for the marginalised”.