Thabane ‘coming home’


JOHANNESBURG – Prime Minister Thomas Thabane and his coalition partners are reportedly on their way back to Maseru with SADC expected to send a team to monitor the situation in the country.

The coalition government leaders have also agreed to “take steps” to reopen Parliament. This follows an alleged coup plot by Lesotho’s military over the weekend.  South African President Jacob Zuma met with Dr Thabane, and other Lesotho and regional officials in Pretoria over the weekend.

The SADC executive secretary, Stergomena Lawrence Tax, was also in attendance, according to the department of international relations and co-operation (Dirco). In a joint statement by the SADC troika and Lesotho governmental leaders on Monday evening, Lesotho’s leaders announced that they would take steps to lift the suspension of parliament.

“In this regard, they agreed on the roadmap with clear timelines on how to remove the Parliament prorogation, which shall be submitted to the King. The Leaders further agreed to issue a joint statement appealing for calm and exercise restraint with a view to rapidly bring law and order back in the Kingdom,” the statement said.  A SADC facilitator and a team specialising in politics, defense and security, would also be sent to Lesotho urgently.

Dr Thabane’s spokesperson, Samonyane Ntsekele, said the prime minister was on his way home.

“We are going home now, most probably we will be in Lesotho tomorrow,” Samonyane Ntsekele, the premier’s advisor told AFP in Pretoria, where security organ of the 15-member SADC held marathon emergency talks on the crisis.

Mr Zuma’s meeting with the coalition leaders followed calls for SADC intervention, including a call by Dr Thabane himself that  SADC should send soldiers into the country.

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