OP-EDs

MAJORO MUST ACT DECISIVELY AGAINST MOKHOTHU

What the Deputy Prime Minister and Ministers did has left a bitter taste in many people’s mouths, and their lack of example setting is something that must be nipped in the bud immediately and decisively.

By TaekeTiiso, Sibongile Mapikitla, Maele ‘Neko and Moabi Matsepe

Honourable Prime Minister, as the youth we are deeply troubled and concerned about the contravention of Public Health Regulations 2021 meant to curb the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) by the Deputy Prime Minister Mathibeli Mokhothu, Ministers and heads of security agencies at the funeral of Major General Metsing Lekhanya which took place on January 28, 2021 at Ha Ratjomose barracks.

The Public Health regulations state categorically that during the period of the lockdown, “a person is prohibited to move beyond his place of residence or workplace except as set out in the regulations”.

We watched the funeral of Major General Lekhanya on the Facebook page of Lesotho National Broadcasting Services (LNBS) and saw Deputy Prime Minister and other Ministers attending the funeral.

On the face of it, Deputy Prime Ministers and the Ministers broke the law because the regulations state clearly that funeral attendance is permitted for a maximum limit of twenty people outdoor only, ten of whom should be family members and ten people for the purpose of assisting with the burial.

There is no reason to believe that Deputy Prime Minister and those Ministers who accompanied him are members of the Lekhanya family.

This brings attention of us as citizens as to who we have to follow the stipulated regulations when our own Ministers do not show the right way by action, surely Lesotho cannot be classified as an Animal Farm type of country where “all animals are equal, but some are more equal than others”.

Many people in this country are not able to bury their loved ones because of the lockdown regulations, yet the members of cabinet were able to attend a funeral of the people they barely even know.

We must bring to the attention of the Honourable Prime Minister that in that very same week Major General Lekhanya was buried, it was the burial of OMI Gabriel Masooane Tlaba; a very significant person in the Catholic Church, nongovernmental organisations and the entire nation.

It was the will of all people who knew him to stand near his coffin and pay their last tribute to him but as to obey the lockdown regulations set by the government to curb the spread of the coronavirus, they did not attend the funeral.

We are all equal in the face of the law and governors should set a good example for the governed.

What the Deputy Prime Minister and Ministers did has left a bitter taste in many people’s mouths, and their lack of example setting is something that must be nipped in the bud immediately and decisively.

In this regard, we call on the Right Honourable Prime Minister to show leadership now and do what is right as a matter of law within seven days: take disciplinary actions against the Deputy Prime Minister and fellow Ministers for violating Public Health Regulations and thereby breaking their oath of office.

Failure to do so will make the right Honourable Prime Minister an accomplice.

Prime Minister should also instruct the Minister of Police to ensure that police investigate this matter and take legal action against all those who violated government’s lockdown regulations.

In case of inaction by Honourable Prime Minister to the above concern, we as youths will take the further steps to hold the Deputy Prime Minister and fellow Ministers accountable for violating the Lockdown rules.

The steps we will take include going to the High Court to seek an order instructing the Honourable Prime Minister to act against his delinquent ministers.

Looking forward to your urgent and cooperate response. NW

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