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Mokhothu defends electoral dreams



MASERU – DEMOCRATIC Congress (DC) leader Mathibeli Mokhothu has defended his vision to modernise Lesotho saying Basotho must dare to dream.

Mokhothu was speaking at a campaign rally in Butha-Buthe on Sunday two weeks after he unveiled an election manifesto that has been derided by critics as highly ambitious and unrealistic.

He said those criticising his manifesto did not know any good ideas.

“Our party manifesto is being criticised by people who do not have dreams and vision,” Mokhothu said.

Mokhothu’s electoral promises were lampooned on social media with many people seeing him as an “unrealistic leader who is so young and daft that he cannot differentiate between a pipedream and an attainable dream”.

The critics specifically referred to Mokhothu’s promise that he will buy helicopters for the police in each district so that they can effectively attend to the rampant stock-theft.

They said what had surprised them most was that Mokhothu was promising to buy helicopters for the police at a time when the law officers do not even have cars to attend to crime scenes.

Mokhothu said the DC government will approach vehicle manufacturing companies to build specialised vehicles that have unique features for the security institutions.

“We will work out the issue of promotions there,” he said.

“This issue of someone who worked for a long time without being promoted should be addressed.”

The critics also marvelled at Mokhothu’s promise that he will build highway interchange roads in Maseru when the city cannot even fill potholes at the main traffic circle.

“He should at least promise that under his rule potholes will be filled,” quipped one critic on Facebook.

Mokhothu referred to the critics as people who “are revealing their hate for the Democratic Congress”.

“These people will be defeated during the 2022 general elections,” Mokhothu said.

He said some people say the DC should not table its manifesto because it is in government.

“We will not stop,” he said.

He said they initially decided to join the government to help rescue Basotho from those who had captured their wool and mohair.

He was referring to the All Basotho Convention (ABC) sponsored policy that created wool and mohair trade monopoly for a Chinese-owned company much to the detriment of Basotho traders in 2018.

He also said the DC decided to be part of the government to curb police brutality that was marching unabated.

The then ABC leader, Prime Minister Thomas Thabane, had on three different occasions encouraged the police to beat up crime suspects when they are out of public view.

Thabane said this on national television, in parliament and at his political rally.

“It is not right for the police to kill perpetrators or crime suspects,” Mokhothu said.

“We also wanted to stabilise the Lesotho government, and it is now stable,” he said.

He added that what they had achieved so far in these three things sends a clear message of how they can improve the lives of Basotho both inside and outside the country when they assume power.

He said the DC wants to improve Lesotho’s economy and living standards by providing Basotho with enough water.

“We will bottle water and sell it all over the country to create jobs and revenue,” he said.

He stated that they also plan to open over 30 diamond mines in the country to increase job opportunities.

“We have 400 identified spots that have diamonds,” he said.

He said they will invite international companies to invest in the country, adding that they will match the investors with Basotho for partnerships.

He talked about creating a diamond centre at the Moshoeshoe I International Airport as a way to create jobs, revenue, and development projects.

“We also want to renovate the airport so that it meets international standards.”

He said they will also help the farmers with skills on how to take care of their flocks.

Mokhothu said they will also offer free secondary education to help Basotho.

“There should always be free working Wi-fi at all the schools,” he said.

Nkheli Liphoto

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