MPs, lawyers boycott parliament over killing of ex-army chief

2015-06-30 12:47

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Cape Town – Lesotho's opposition members reportedly boycotted parliament on Monday as they protested against the killing of former army commander Maaparankoe Mahao last week.

Mahao was allegedly shot dead by members of the Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) in his village home on the outskirts of Maseru.

According to a report by The Mail and Guardian, Mahao was shot dead during an operation to arrest suspected coup plotters.

A military court document dated June 8, listed the names of 45 soldiers detained on suspicion of planning a mutiny.

Mahao, who was an ally of Lesotho's former leader Tom Thabane, was a bitter rival of current army chief Tlali Kamoli.

Renewed violence

Lesotho lawyers also boycotted the courts, saying one of their own who was representing the families of detained soldiers had fled the country after being threatened by some members of the army, the SABC reported on Tuesday. The lawyers’ boycott was set to continue, the report said.

There were fears the mountainous kingdom could plunge into renewed violence following Mahao's killing.

President Jacob Zuma, in his capacity as the chairperson of the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) organ on politics, defence and security co-operation, on Monday dispatched his deputy Cyril Ramaphosa amid growing concerns at the deteriorating situation in Lesotho.

Ramaphosa is the SADC facilitator on Lesotho.

Various people on Monday took to social media as they tweeted about the new developments in the southern African country.

Read more on:    sadc  |  jacob zuma  |  tom thabane  |  cyril ramaphosa  |  lesotho  |  southern africa

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