MPs complain of police harassment

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DC Proportional Representation legislator Refiloe Litjobo

Billy Ntaote

MEMBERS of parliament have accused the police of subjecting them to degrading and unlawful body searches since the re-opening of the august house last Friday.

A disgruntled Democratic Congress (DC) Proportional Representation legislator, Refiloe Litjobo who threw his weight behind the opposition’s no confidence motion against his party leader and Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili, told the house he was subjected to embarrassing searches by the police who were deployed along roads leading to the parliament building.

“They searched my bags and it was a shocking thing to be subjected to such a body search,” Mr Litjobo said.

Mount Moorosi constituency legislator who is also Basotho National Party (BNP) leader Thesele ’Maseribane told the house on Tuesday that opposition MPs had grave concerns about police officers’ conduct.

“We are being searched and we would like an explanation as to what happened to warrant the body searches,” Mr ’Maseribane said, adding, “Safety for MPs and the Prime Minister is important but the searches are not necessary”.

In response, the Speaker of the National Assembly, Ntlhoi Motsamai said they had been working on various measures to ensure all legislators would be easily identifiable to prevent such incidents.

“We even thought about introducing special vehicle registration plate numbers that we had agreed on,” Ms Motsamai said.

She however, said legislators should not ascribe political connotations to issues that were purely of a security nature.

 

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