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Tuesday, November 29, 2022

LIVE BLOG: Lesotho Elections 2022

Lesotho: Unemployment, the economy among voter’s concerns ahead Friday’s elections

The southern African country of 2.1 million people has more than 60 registered political parties but the election is expected to be a three-way contest.

Outgoing Deputy Prime Minister Mathibeli Mokhothu of the Democratic Congress party is in a close race against his current coalition partner Nkaku Kabi of the All Basotho Convention and businessman-turned-politician Sam Matekane of the Revolution for Prosperity.

Lesotho’s King Letsie III presides over a constitutional monarchy but has virtually no political power. Whichever party wins enough representatives in Lesotho’s 120-seat National Assembly to form a government will select the new prime minister. With so many parties contesting the election, a coalition is very likely, say experts. – The Maravi Post

Lesotho votes in election with political crisis still unresolved

Lesotho citizens were due to vote in an election on Friday, after years of political instability that the southern African mountain kingdom’s lawmakers have yet to resolve.

The election will go ahead despite a deadlock in parliament on a whole gamut of major constitutional reforms that were meant to be enacted ahead of the vote so as to bring order to Lesotho’s fractious politics.

The All Basotho Convention (ABC) has run the country, with a population of 2.14 million, since 2017, but divisions within the party have given it two prime ministers over five years.

Defections have meanwhile left the party vulnerable to opposition rivals Democratic Congress (DC) or the new Revolution for Prosperity (RFP), led by businessman Sam Matekane.

“These elections will be highly contested and by the look of things the DC and RFP will be neck-and-neck,” said Lesotho political analyst Lefu Thaela. He added that DC are likely to get the most votes but if they don’t win an outright majority, the outgoing ABC will find themselves kingmakers. – Reuters.

SADC urges restraint as Lesotho heads for elections

The Southern African Development Community (SADC) has called for all Lesotho stakeholders to exercise restraint as the kingdom heads for eagerly awaited parliamentary elections set for Friday.

Speaking during the launch of a 63-member SADC Electoral Observer Mission (SEOM) in Maseru on Monday, Namibia’s Defence Minister Frans Kapofi said all registered Basotho voters should be allowed to “exercise their civic and political rights.”

“We encourage all stakeholders to ensure that these elections are conducted in a peaceful, free, fair, transparent and credible manner,” said Kapofi who is leading the SADC observer team.

He said the regional bloc looked forward to an electoral process that adheres to standard democratic values and principles.

The SEOM, which has been in Lesotho since September 25, has been deployed to the 10 districts of Lesotho.

Members of the mission are drawn from Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe. – APA

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