Police grill Moleleki over Khetheng murder

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Ntsebeng Motsoeli

FORMER Deputy Prime Minister Monyane Moleleki was yesterday grilled by the police over the 2016 murder of Police Constable (PC) Mokalekale Khetheng.

The development comes barely a fortnight after the collapse of the four-party coalition led by All Basotho Convention (ABC) leader Thomas Thabane with Mr Moleleki as his deputy.

Deputy Police Commissioner of (DCP) Paseka Mokete last night told the Lesotho Times that Mr Moleleki, who leads the now in opposition Alliance of Democrats (AD), was called in for questioning yesterday afternoon and allowed to go home afterwards. He would not be drawn into saying whether or not they intended to charge him with any offence related to the murder.

“He (Mr Moleleki) was called in for questioning and he has already left the police station,” DCP Mokete said.

“The questioning was in connection with the Khetheng murder. You will remember that at the time Khetheng was killed, Ntate Moleleki was the minister of police and we wanted him to shed light regarding what he knew of this matter.”

PC Khetheng went missing shortly after he was arrested by his colleagues at a traditional feast in Sebothoane, Leribe, on 25 March 2016. At the time of his murder, Mr Moleleki was the Police and Public Safety minister under the then seven parties’ coalition led by then Democratic Congress (DC) leader, Pakalitha Mosisili. Mr Moleleki was DC deputy leader and he left to form the AD in December that year after falling out with Mr Mosisili.

Incidentally, investigations into PC Khetheng’s disappearance only intensified when the Thabane/Moleleki coalition came to power with Mr Moleleki as deputy prime minister in June 2017.

PC Khetheng’s body was eventually exhumed in August 2017 at a mass grave in the Lepereng cemetery on the outskirts of Maseru. The cemetery is a burial site for unclaimed corpses.

Opposition Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) deputy leader Tšeliso Mokhosi, who served as Defence and National Security minister in Mr Mosisili’s government, was subsequently charged with PC Khetheng’s murder.

He was charged alongside former Police Commissioner Molahlehi Letsoepa and four other police officers.

The other officers are Senior Superintendent Thabo Tšukulu, Superintendent Mothibeli Mofolo, Inspector Mabitle Matona and Police Constable Haleokoe Taasoane.

Mr Letsoepa is in exile while the four officers, who had since been suspended from their jobs, are detained at the Maseru Maximum Security Prison. The case is pending in the High Court.

 

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