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Two to fight for Senate presidency



MASERU – THE Principal Chief of Kueneng, Peete Lesaoana Peete, is today expected to fight it out for the presidency of the Senate against the incumbent, Dr ’Mamonaheng Mokitimi.

Several people who have been appointed to the senate confirmed to thepost last night that the race for the top post will be between the two.

King Letsie III has called the senators, 11 appointed by him and 22 principal chiefs including Chief Peete, to be sworn-in at 10.30am at the old parliament building this morning.

They will also elect the president and the deputy.

Two of the new senators to be sworn-in, ’Mawinnie Kanetsi and Leboea Khoaele who declined to state who they would vote for, said all eyes in the senate will be on the two.

Dr Mokitimi is the first female President of the Senate in Lesotho.

She was also the first female elected in 2012, to the position of Vice-President of the Senate, where she served until 2015.

Dr Mokitimi joined parliament in 1999 as the principal interpreter and was later promoted to the position of clerk assistant until she resigned in 2012.

She was also the HIV/AIDS coordinator in the Senate where she initiated HIV/AIDS programmes, which became very successful at reducing rampant HIV/AIDS-related deaths not only at the workplace but in the country at large in partnership with principal chiefs.

She is a businesswoman specialising in commercial farming and also a director and a shareholder in a family-run business (TRHM Group).

Chief Peete was inaugurated as the Principal Chief in 2008, taking over from his mother, Chieftainess ’Mantoetsi Lesaoana Peete, who was holding the office for him while he learned the ropes.

Chief Peete graduated with a law degree from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in 2003.

He worked at Snyman and Companies, a law firm in Ficksburg, South Africa, after graduating, before making the extraordinary decision to leave the firm for initiation school in 2005.

When he returned home to Lesotho, Chief Peete worked as a prosecutor in the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP).

Yesterday the King published a gazette calling for the swearing-in of the senators.

The new senate members are Chieftainess ’Maphakiso Lebona of Thaba-Tšoeu, Chieftainess ’Makholu Moshoeshoe of Likueneng, Neo Matjato Moteane, Richard Ramoeletsi, Limpho Tau, Seabata Motsamai, ’Mawinnie Kanetsi, ’Mabataung Patricia Mokhathali, Dr Thabiso Lebese, and Sehloho Monatsi.

Monatsi stated that it is an honour to be appointed a senator.

“It will not be a walk in the park, but for Basotho, we will work,” he said.

Chieftainess Lebona and Chieftainess Moshoeshoe were directly appointed by the king while others, picked from coalition government partners, were appointed at the advice of the prime minister.

Nkheli Liphoto

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