Lesotho opposition to form coalition

2012-05-30 10:47
Maseru - Lesotho opposition parties have agreed to form a coalition after veteran Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili's party failed to win an absolute majority in parliamentary elections.

All Basotho Convention leader Tom Thabane said late on Tuesday that at least five parties would form an alliance giving them a minimum of 64 seats, a majority in the 120-seat parliament following Saturday's election.

"We have a common goal of seeing a Lesotho that is truly democratic and since none of our parties have the numbers we decided to form a coalition," Thabane said.

Final results released on Tuesday showed Mosisili's Democratic Congress (DC) winning 48 seats, of which 41 are directly elected and seven awarded by a proportional representation system.

Under the constitution, the Democratic Congress as the biggest party has the first right to try to form a coalition to govern the tiny mountain kingdom which is entirely surrounded by South Africa.

However, this now appears unlikely given the opposition move.

Saturday's vote was the most closely watched since 1998 when Mosisili came to power in polls that sparked a violent reaction from the opposition and triggered a South African military intervention to restore order.

Personal feuds among the three main party leaders have largely overshadowed the campaign in a country where more than half of its two million people lives in poverty.

Read more on:    pakalitha mosisili  |  lesotho  |  southern africa

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