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Parliamentary committee chairman booted out



MASERU – Lekhetho Mosito was on Tuesday ousted as parliament’s Law and Public Safety Portfolio Committee chairman.
He was replaced by Thato Ntsibolane.

The portfolio committee passed the vote of no-confidence on Mosito during its closed meeting.
Out of the 21 members, only eight were present.

Five voted to boot out Mosito while two members, Motimposo MP Thabang Mafojane and Qhalasi MP Palo Leteetee, opposed the motion.

Mafojane and Mosito are members of the All Basotho Convention (ABC) party while Leteetee is a member of the Democratic Congress (DC).

Those who voted for the motion were Tseleng Senekane and Ntsibolane of the Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD), Bobatsi MP Mooki Sello and Kose Makoa who are members of the Alliance of Democrats (AD).

The fifth one was Joang Molapo, who is occupying the Basotho National Party (BNP) seat under the proportional representation system. Molapo is voting with the AD after he fell out with the BNP leadership two years ago.

It is not clear whether Mosito would have survived the vote if other members of the committee had attended the Tuesday meeting.

The members complained that Mosito had blocked the National Peace and Unity Bill 2021 that seeks to pardon human rights violators.

The Bill was lodged in parliament by LCD leader Mothetjoa Metsing.
Ntsibolane told thepost that the committee had lost confidence in Mosito.

“He has sat on the National Peace and Unity Bill 2021 that was presented by the LCD leader Mothetjoa Metsing earlier last year and was referred to the committee so that it produces a report for parliament,” Ntsibolane said.

“We suspected that Mosito did not want to see the Bill succeed,” he said.

“The committee has worked out the issue of peace and reconciliation so that it goes to parliament, but Mosito has sat on the matter.”

He complained that Mosito, as their chairman, was supposed to have called meetings to ensure that the Bill sails through.

“He failed to do his job and he is to blame.”

He said Metsing was still in exile as the Bill has not been passed by parliament adding his leader could have returned home a long time ago if Mosito had done his work.

Ntsibolane said their other reason to remove Mosito was that he failed to cross to the crossbench with Thabane last month.

“Mosito should not be leading the committee as he does not belong to any party now,” he said.

Ntsibolane said the parties have influence in the committees.

“Before you become a member of parliament you are a politician, therefore the fact that he failed to go with his party had to be put in mind.”

He promised to ensure that the Bill passes the committee stage so that it goes to parliament for a final decision.

“We will do our job and make sure that a decision is taken, the Bill will be worked out,” he said.

He added that the committee does not have a right to overlook the Bills as their job is just to produce reports.

Mosito told thepost that it is none of the committee’s business that he did not cross with his leader to the crossbench.

“The committees are there to work for Basotho and not to push political party interests,” Mosito said.

“But lately committees act like political parties’ grounds where party agendas are propelled,” he said.

He complained that the members who ousted him did not usually attend committee sessions unless they have an agenda they want to push.

“They do not even know that we once called the NRA CEO in connection with this Bill and found out that the NRA was already working on it,” he said.

Mosito said he did not decide on behalf of the committee but only let the committee members make decisions.

“Some people want to meddle in internal politics of parties they are not members.”

He said the issue of a cross bench belongs to them as ABC members and not the other parties.

“They have their interests in destabilising us.”

He promised to support the new chairman to ensure that their work succeeds.

He said the committee members who ousted him have an interest in the ABC matters which is something that should not be happening.

“They did it just because they saw that they have the numbers.”

Nkheli Liphoto

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