ALL Basotho Convention (ABC) chairperson, Samuel Rapapa, has predicted that his party and the Democratic Congress (DC) will retain power in next year’s general elections.
Addressing a weekend rally in Makoabating, Thaba Tseka, Mr Rapapa said the ABC and DC were the biggest parties in the country. He said the two parties had made a “momentous decision” to forge a governing coalition in May 2020. Their combined overwhelming numbers had made it impossible for the smaller parties to dislodge them from power through no confidence votes in parliament, he said.
He therefore urged the people to vote for either party in next year’s elections, saying all the others were small parties that would only be in opposition.
“Ladies and gentlemen, there are people who have sworn that they will never vote again because of lack of services,” Mr Rapapa said.
“Those people say they will not vote because the government owes wool and mohair farmers money for their produce. They say that the Matsaile road has not been constructed and some people have not benefitted from food donations.
“But the (2022) election results will still show Kobotata (ABC) and Potoana (DC) as the winners hence you should vote for either of these parties. This government will still construct roads and deliver other services. If you feel you don’t want to vote for Kobotata, at least vote for Potoana. If you feel you cannot vote for Kobotata or Potoana, you could still vote for the small party with Xhosa colours,” Mr Rapapa said.
He did not name the small party with Xhosa colours. However, some believe he was referring to Professor Nqosa Mahao’s Basotho Action Party (BAP) which was formed after the former ABC deputy leader dumped the ruling party citing an alleged plot to oust him. The plot was allegedly hatched by ABC leader Thomas Thabane, his deputy, Moeketsi Majoro, and secretary general, Lebohang Hlaele.
Mr Rapapa has had to deny allegations that he is loyal to Prof Mahao and will eventually defect to the BAP whose brown, red and green colours resemble those of some of traditional Xhosa attire.
Mr Rapapa said nothing, not even smear campaigns, would prevent the ABC and DC from securing the lion’s share of the votes and forming the next government.
“Basotho are lying a lot these days. If you don’t like a certain party, you lie about them. Some people will lie to you and say Kobotata and Potoana can never work together.
“But I want this message to be clear and I want it to stick in your heads. After the 2022 elections, the government will be made of the ABC and DC. It is only a question of which constituency will be won by which of the two parties.
“Kobotata and Potoana members’ decision that the two biggest parties should govern together has made it difficult for the smaller parties because they don’t have the numbers to take the ABC-DC government head-on.
“This is why those who have threatened to topple the government have failed at every attempt. I am therefore advising you to go out and vote next year,” Mr Rapapa said.
Despite his positive comments about the DC, the latter has become increasingly exasperated with the ABC due to the perennial infighting in the Thomas Thabane-led party.
The DC’s exasperation with the fractious ABC was captured by former prime minister and founding DC leader, Pakalitha Mosisili, who a fortnight ago expressed sympathy for DC leader and Deputy Prime Minister Mathibeli Mokhothu for being “yoked in government with a difficult coalition partner”.