Setipa admits ‘short-lived’ DC membership

 

Billy Ntaote

Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) candidate for Maseru constituency in next month’s parliamentary election, Joshua Setipa, yesterday admitted he was once a member of the Democratic Congress (DC).

However, Mr Setipa—who had denied any previous association with the DC during several interviews with the media, including the Lesotho Times—insisted his membership was very short-lived and also took exception to the media’s “obsession” with “confidential information” which he believes was deliberately leaked by the DC to tarnish his reputation.

The Lesotho Times is in possession of a copy of Mr Setipa’s DC registration form dated 27 November 2013, which he however, said should not have been made public as it was “confidential”. According to the form, Mr Setipa registered with the DC in his home constituency of Semena in Thaba-Tseka district.

“I have nothing to hide, and cannot allow myself to be distracted by cheap political stunts. I am focusing on winning the elections come 28 February, and will not be bothered by all sorts of allegations being made through the media.

“I was only a member of the DC for a few months. I think my DC membership lasted about three months,” said Mr Setipa, who rose to national prominence when he was appointed Chief Executive Officer of the Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) in January 2012.

Mr Setipa, who has since left the LNDC, further said what should be cause for concern to the DC was how such confidential information “ended up in the hands of a journalist and on social networks”.

“That is what should concern the DC; the party should investigate how internal party information is being leaked to the media and nothing else. That should surely be a problem and not my being an LCD candidate.

“If the DC is complaining about my representing the LCD in the upcoming (parliamentary)elections, the party knows the channels to follow to voice those concerns. However, I would be concerned if the complaints were from my party, the LCD.

“But like I said, my main focus is the election and winning the Maseru constituency for the LCD and nothing else.

“Again, I expect Basotho to be focusing on crucial development issues and not be swayed by rumourmongers.”

Meanwhile, DC Secretary General, Ralechate ‘Mokose, yesterday said it had come as a surprise that a “DC member” was now an LCD election candidate.

“We were shocked to see that Mr Setipa was a candidate of the LCD, as we had known him to be a DC member. However, we cannot continue to argue about it, suffice to say the document you have proves that he has not been telling the truth about never having been a member of our party,” said Mr ‘Mokose.

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