Lesotho Prime Minister fails to appear in court after travelling to South Africa

Prime Minister of Lesotho, Thomas Thabane, failed to appear in court on Friday where he was expected to be charged over the murder of his late wife, Lipolelo Thabane.

His private secretary said Thabane, 80, had a pre-arranged doctor’s appointment in South Africa’s capital, Pretoria.
Prosecutors will now arrange another day for Thabane to appear in court.

The Prime minister’s current wife, Maesaiah Thabane, 42, who he married two months after Lipolelo’s death, has already been charged with ordering Lipolelo’s murder but is currently out on bail.

On Thursday, Thabane said he would quit office by the end of July because of old age.

The late wife of the Prime Minister of Lesotho Thomas Thabane, Lipolelo, was murdered in a hail of bullets on 14 June 2017 while she was driving home in Ha Masana outside Maseru. She was driving with her acquaintance Thato Sebolla at the time of the attack who was also shot, sustaining injuries.

Meanwhile, Amnesty International has called on authorities in Lesotho to protect key witnesses to the murder of Lipolelo Thabane

“With such powerful suspects facing murder and attempted murder charges – and a long history of impunity in the country – it is imperative that Lesotho’s authorities ensure that those people whose testimony is central to the case, are kept safe from harm.

“Already one of the individuals considered a key witness has died in mysterious circumstances, and others have fled the country after receiving death threats. The authorities have failed to provide adequate protection to them, despite police knowing that their lives are in danger.

“With First Lady, Maesaiah Thabane already facing murder charges relating to this sinister case, and now the Prime Minister also on the charge sheet, it’s clear that they will receive public scrutiny for their involvement. However, it is vital that the enquiry identify everyone responsible for ordering, planning and executing these crimes. All perpetrators must be brought to justice in fair trials.”


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