Army threatens crackdown
By webmaster On 21 Apr, 2012 At 07:15 PM | Categorized As Local, News | With 2 Comments

Caswell Tlali

MASERU — The Lesotho Defence Forces (LDF) says it will “hit very hard” people who instigate violence during the campaign period.
The army issued the stern warning on Friday, a day after violent clashes between Democratic Congress (DC) and opposition supporters left 10 people injured and several cars damaged.
The clashes started when a mob wearing Lesotho Workers Party, All Basotho Convention and Lesotho Congress for Democracy regalia stormed a DC rally in the Thetsane Industrial Area on Thursday afternoon.
After the clashes DC leader, Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili, encouraged his supporters to retaliate if attacked.
But the army says it will not tolerate any attempt to destabilise peace in Lesotho.
In a strongly worded statement Captain Ntlele Ntoi, the Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) public affairs officer, said “all those who are hell-bent to destabilise peace and tranquility in this country” are challenging the LDF’s capability “to maintain law and order”.
“Therefore the LDF will hit very hard on those who instigate violence to destabilise peace”.
The LDF HQ (headquarters) would like to remind perpetrators that Lesotho is not a Hobbesian state where only the fittest survive, Ntoi said.
He said the LDF condemns Thursday’s violence “in strong terms it deserves.”
“It was on that uncalled-for incident where perpetrators of these heinous acts inflicted serious injuries to some of the citizens, damaged property including the motorcade of the Right Honourable the Prime Minister,” he said.
“Accordingly, all those who are resolved to disrupt peace and stability should know forthwith that such incidents of violence which took place at Ha Thetsane will no longer be tolerated.”
The nation, Ntoi said, should remember how such incidents as the one in Thetsane “plunged the country into chaos”.
He was referring to the 1998 political riots that left dozens dead and reduced Maseru and other major towns to ashes.
Order was only restored after some regional countries intervened by sending an army.
Ntoi said the LDF Command expect that during the campaign for the May 26 election people will be free “to exercise their constitutional right which provide for freedom of association in order to choose the government of their choice without any intimidation of any form”.
“And it is the obligation of all those who are responsible for maintaining law and order to ensure that peace and tranquility prevails for the good of all Basotho regardless of their political affiliations, religious denominations or race”.
In response to the LDF’s statement, the Lesotho Workers Party deputy leader Sello Maphalla said it is good that the army is concerned about political violence.
He was however quick to point out that the army should “equally show concern about the rampant murders of prominent and ordinary people.”
“It is an established fact that gun-waving murderers are marching the streets freely and law enforcement agencies are not seen to take action like they are doing with the unfortunate Thetsane incident,” Maphalla said.
“We are still waiting for a strong statement like this one for murders of Thabang Moliko, Selomo (Lebajoa Lephatsoe), some MPs and others who were shot dead in the recent past,” he said.
“The LWP condemns the Thursday violence at Thetsane factories but at the same time urges the army to play an active role in dealing with other violent crimes.”

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  1. Kokota says:

    Political violence should be condemned and political leaders should do their best to prevent it.

    But why should it be the army who is taking the lead on this and not the police? Why shouldn’t the army come in only to support the police if need be? The army should be careful not to overstep their authority and end up abusing human rights like we have seen in the past.

  2. Lethula says:

    Warning does not mean threats and threats do not imply warning. I think this is warning to these opposition thugs. Even if the army did not release this statement , the thugs were well aware that what they did at Ha Thetsane would not be repeated.

  3. Molapo says:

    Haele Machakela ke phau-phau feela tjena. Hoja a jara mekoatla a hopola hahabo. Ho felile ke lehlohonolo. Job well done LDF re tennoe ke limaumau tsena tse ratang meferefere hoena le hoea fereha sechaba.

  4. Nna says:

    Ntja tsena tsa DCF seka tsa tlo ikutloa matla ho Basotho mona 1998 mona ena mccd eno o ne a ba bitsetse Maburu mona a fihla a ba raha bono tsena sis

  5. Nna says:

    @ Molapo please stop using this name ea bana ba Molapo in this forum. Congress ere Molapo ke Linoa mali i am sure mokhehle would expel u from all congreses if u stil use this name ask ntatao Qhobela nxa

  6. semenekane says:

    Bohle re ea lumellana hore meferefere e lokela ho feela libokeng tsa lipolotiki. Ke mpa ke makalletse ho its’unyats’unya hoa Sesole mosebetsing o lokeloang ho etsoa ke Sepolesa.

    Re maketse ruri hobane batho ba hlahelletseng ka mahetla ba bolailoe, Sesole se thotse tu!. Liphoolo tsa Basotho li ea utsuoa ka likhoka, Sesole se phuthile matsoho. Hantle mosebetsi oa lona ke eng?. Ke ho ja libifi e be le ntse le nyolosa le thehosa kahara naha for sweat nothing?

    Tsamaeang le eeng meeling koana le khaohane le litaba tsa lipolotiki bo Ralirifi

  7. JS says:

    Hoa soabisa ho teana le lipolelo tse ts’oanang le tsa ‘Nna’, haholo ha a sa elelloe hore Basotho bohle ho sa khethe malapa, ba na le tokelo ea ho ba le maikutlo. Semenekane o leka ho re kholisa hore ha a ananele meferefere, feela o qetella polelo ea hae ka ho hobosa sesole. Eba kannete le thoholetsa eng? It may not be common knowledge here, but it becomes important to read between the lines. The deeper meaning here is not factional… and because with politics here we cannot think in a non-partisan way we tend to read what satisfiies our own opinions. Molapo could have addressed his opinion about Mr. Machakela in a humble manner, but he chooses to be vile? Why do we have to behave like this, especially in a forum that allows us the uncensored freedom to voice our opinions? None of you read the article, hence your reactions which bear no relevance whatsoever to what the statement says!!!

  8. Silky says:

    The Army?again? I could see it coming. Check out where the buck stops in the Army!

  9. Blue collar says:

    We don’t even need to act suprised at LDF’s reaction. Don’t even question why they are involved not the police. Lesotho is a chaotic wild country, where soldiers don’t have a proper mandate and police are no different to thugs and herdboys. A country where a year in jail can be equated to R1000, and where paying bail means freedom. A country where soldiers will kill 3 unarmed civilians all at once and then claim that they were defending themselves.

    The goverment has been buying anti-riot equipment and those big trucks that can be used to arrest crowds while more ambulances, fire engines, police vehicles are still needed in our everyday life. WHY? Think… We are not a nation that riot and cause chaos everyday. So what I’m basically saying is Qomatsi is on the pipe line. We are already living in a police state. But that seems not to be enough, the army wants to tighten the squizz. I condone violence any kind of violence, but one might also think that Mccd planned and was hoping for such incidents hence why he instigates retaliation. He wants to provoke violence so that he can clamp the opposition down under the notion that the are troublemakers…watch this space!

  10. Lefefooane says:

    Bahaesong, have you ever heard any army issuing press releases on issues that are purely not about the army. Take for instance, South African president was hacled by Malema supporters at Cape town Civic center as Zuma was to give a lecture on ANC centenary lecture. The whole process was disrupted but SANDF did not issue a statement. In Syria where the army is killing so many protesters, I have never heard of a press release from the Syrian army. Now, here you see our army issuing press releases on domestic ‘violances’. That Kamoli guy sounds like someone who read politics at collage. Lona ba motsebang tell me what course did Kamoli study at NUL. He seems so interested in politics.

  11. Lefefooane says:

    @Blue collar, can you imagine an army protecting itself from a civillian using a gpmg (General purpose Machine Gun)? We are indeed a failed state under this CD goverment. Hona, what the hell is the army doing with gpmg in the village. The GPMG is used during combat. I have seen them roaming the Thetsane area with gpmg recently. Those are LDF failed to protect us against the SANDF invassion in 1998. They did not even protect themselves. They got disarmed by civillians in 2007. So ba nahana hore ba ka tsosa bo mang na? Wait for May 28 we will deploy all of them to the borders of Lesotho to quell stock theft. Oters will be used to plough our feilds. nxa sis!!!

  12. Letsatsi says:

    Ntate tlali, taba ea hore motho oa le DC o tsoile ka tengteng a nkile molamu a otla motho kapa batho ba bo’me’ ba neng ba nkile placard e ngotseng taba tsa bona, ha oa e qolotsa keng? Batho ba qalang likhathatso ba sebelisang thepa ea muso/sechaba e makoloi le tseling le tla li qolotsa neng Morena Tlali. Tlohelang ho sekama. bontsang tsehetso ea lona hantle ho DC le sa buoe batho hampe hleng.

  13. Kest says:

    I have always thought ke mosebetsi wa sepolesa ho keepa “Law and Order” as put here by the captain. Joale le army ese e etsa mosebetsi oo. Hoa makatsa ruri. I hope ha se bona ba tla etsa moferefere ka mor’a likhetho

  14. Oa Ha Maama says:

    Ba haesong ke nahana Tlali is a confused entity. Unfortunately he is dragging our army to the dirty business of politics. If I were Ntate Kamoli I would have waited for the thorough investigations into what really transpired instead of rushing to isshue a statement. Ntate Metsing should replace Kamoli Tlali with a better person after the 26 May. Ea fofa nonyana.

  15. Oa Ha Maama says:

    @Lefefooane, Ntate Kamoli studied PAPS at NUL lilemong tsa bo 1998 o ne a etsa 1st year, although he was old then. Yes he studied politics. I do not know if he studied anything related to millitary or public relations. What I know is that he used to be head of Millitary Intelligence after studying PAPS at NUL. He is quite old as he used to tell us he joined the army in 1983.

    • kepi says:

      hare hloke meferefere hape ea 98. khalemela kamoli. kenya koepere now. ba shape. mosotho u rata ho utloa ka letlalo.

  16. Matabola says:

    haele hantle ho thwe ke mang a qalileng moferefere ha thetsatsane? tlohellang ho lahla sechaba.

  17. Lerato says:

    @Kokota, ao! kokota, ebe le uena u ne u le karolo ea bo ramerusu le uena? If you say army will overstep their authority and abusing the so-called human rights, don’t you think those violent perpetrators were also violating the human rights of the nation of Lesotho? LDF must take an action, they shouldn’t tolerate any madness and violence to take place again in this country. If a person hates his/her own life, he/she will go and show madness in political rallies and in turn army will show him/her. Basotho know exactly how the police or army force work or prevent any retaliation to occur in our country. These perpetrators aim of violence is to end up going into other people’s shop to loot. We don’t want to see any evil deeds of 1998 in this country. Army must stand up to prevent any destruction that may be caused by hungry political peasants. We are tired of these corrupt political peasants here.

  18. Lerato says:

    Lesotho is not South Africa where violent rallies or demonstrations are part of their culture. We don’t ever need to experience violence of any sort in the Lesotho. We are not used to violence in this country. Any mosotho willing to see violence or anything that can ruin our lives must just cross the border into South Africa where violence is culture. South Africans born and grew up in the culture of violence in their townships, so they got used to violence. So any basotho enjoying such violence, must just cross the born into that country. We don’t need any madness here. Soldiers must deal with them if they are stubborn!!!

  19. Mpoti says:

    Li-opposition ha li sa batle MOSISILI, hobaneng ba itlamang ho ea lipitsong tsa hae? Ke hona hore ba tsebe ho qala merusu? Basotho bohle ba nahanang hore le rata lipolotiki haholo, elelloang hore Lesotho hase ‘mantloane a lona hleng. Lesotho mona re na le tokelo ea ho phela ka khotso, eseng hore re tlilo senyetsoa khotso ebe re qetella re ntse re qoba likulo literateng mona ka baka la lona mahlanya ting. Masole ke se ke itse a sebetsane le lona hle. Le lakatsa ho tla choatla lishopping mall tse tsa batho kaha le lapile le ho lapa? Kulo e tla tsoha holima nama lea tseba hee. Hase ‘mantloaneng a lona Lesotho mona hohang!!!!!!

  20. Mpoti says:

    Ha rena interest ea hore na ke mang ea qalileng merusu hobane rona ba bang hare mahlanya a mathang kamora banna ba leshano ba itjellang ba le bang ha basotho ba sotlehile. Feela mahlanya a mathang kamora boralipolotiki, haeba bohlanya ba bona bo tsohile ba tsebe hore lehlanya le phekoloa ka phafa. Joale ba tsebe hore phafa ea masole ke likulo holima nama, hobane haba batle khotso ba iphetola mahlanya a lipolotiki Lesotho mona.
    Re keke ra mamella ho tla tenoa ke banna le basali ba sotlehileng ba apereng likipa tsa bo toala, nonyana, ‘malikotoana, macaefa, le manashenale Lesotho mona. Ke mokhoa oona mahlanya a lipolotiki a lapileng. A ipatlela phafa. Mosotho o hloka ho utloa ka letlalo hore litsebe tsa hae tse thibaneng li thibolohe!!!

  21. Mpoti says:

    @Semenekane, ha mapolesa a Lesotho a sa etse mosebetsi oa bona, masole a kene a ts’ireletse sechaba sa Lesotho. Ho keke hoa baballoa litlokotsebe tse lapileng tsa lipolotiki hore li luke khotso ea Lesotho hle, le khaleee!!!! E eang moo le eang lona ba boulelang litlokotsebe tsa lipolotiki!!!

  22. Uena MPOTI u utloahala u le eona pitsana hantle, taba ea bohlokoa mona ke hore na ke mang ea qalileng meferefere ena. HA RE U JOETSE HEE, ke le-DC le tabotseng PLACARD e anti-MCCD a bile a felehetsa ka lieta ho mosali ea neng a phethisa tokelo ea hae ea ho nts’a maikutlo. EMPA ka holimolimo ke MCCD ka bo eena, o na ilo etsang ha-THETSANE empa a tseba hantle hore ha ho eso fete le selemo feela a hanne ho mamela lillo tsa bona? Motho enoa oa lona (MCCD) e tlameha e le sehole haeba hlooho e se sa fapana!!!!

  23. Mpoti says:

    @Sea-le-moea sa lekotikoti, U sona sealemoea sena se sa tlalang hantle, mohlomong u e mong ea eeng a buoe litaba tse sa fellang bo-Moafrika fm moo seboholi se eeng se nne se le thibe ka ho bua litaba tse sa tlalang. Ha u qeta u ntse u ipuela litaba tsa hlooho eno ea hau e nelang fela tjena. Aku qalang merusu hape seterateng moo, le tla utloa ka letlalo u tseba hantle, kulo holima nama. U bitter pelong e mpe eno ea hau. Kea pheta ke re Lesotho mona hase ‘mantloaneng oa banana le bashanyana ba fopotlehileng, ba senang mosebetsi, ba tsamaeang ba etsa meferefere kahara naha, teng le tla patala ka letlalo la lona hleng. Isang ntoa ena ea lona le potoana ka lebokoseng ka li-26 may, mono teng le na le tokelo ea ho loana le ballot paper, eseng literateng tsa naha ea rona. Teng le tla e nyathela hleng mahlanya, bohlanya bo phekoloa ka phafa feela!!!!

  24. william tell says:

    since when is the army responsible for maintaining law and order? then what is the work of the police? why is the army always meddling in affairs that are out of its jurisdiction? they are trying so painfully hard to please their masters! and it also shows that they are idle. i am awaiting a ruler who will do away with the army, we dont need an army in this nation, serious waste of money and resources which should be channeled to the police service…

  25. Lefefooane says:

    To hell with Kamoli Tlali.How is that PAPS related to the military job? nxa, sis. He fela banna kea kholoa o betere ho feta Thuso Motanyane. Thuso Motanyane e ne e le ntja e ngoe feela tjena e le hoeleha esa tsebeng le ho bala Sesotho feela hee ha ane a haila mocha eno o ne o ka hlolloa. Thuso Motanyane e ne ele Lecongress congress congress, ke hopola ka nako e ngoe re palame sefofane rea Washington le ena he a lecturera monna eno ka bocongress. Feela like all congress guys he acknowledged that there there is no idealogy that defines congress. He told me admittedly though that congress was Ntsu Mokhehle and nothing else. He was lt colonel in the Lesotho army then.

  26. Koto says:

    This is cause for concern. Since when does the Military or a Defence Force enforce Law & Order? Only in Lesotho. I thought the Police Service was charged with maintaining Law & order and the Army defending, as a defence force, our territory against foreign threats/invasions. Lesotho is a condemned failed state.

  27. Lesafilone says:

    I only wonder, how it feel as a soldier when you point a Machine Gun at the factory women-Do you feel good and proud that civilians/women are afraid of your gun? From a male view, I don’t think even ordinary men can affort to threaten ”Basali ba Lifeme”” Masole Lesotho moo a koetliselitsoe ho tso’sa masafilone, le ho ba masecurity a bo Mccd?. Che masole a Lesotho a itlontlolla man-xsoaa!!

  28. [...] to “retaliate with all your might” if attacked, while the Lesotho military has vowed to “hit very hard” any [...]

  29. seputla says:

    Mapolesa ke lirota. Masole a etsa hantle to stop these loosers from disturbing the country.

  30. [...] April 19 2012 [↩]Sunday Express, Leaders urged to control supporters [↩]Sunday Express, Army Threatens Crackdown [↩]Jordan, Michael J Bishop Tutu urges peace in upcoming Lesotho elections. Christian Science [...]

  31. [...] political assassinations. However, the flames and bloodshed of 1998 scarred the public psyche. A startling reminder of that came on April 19, after a clash between pro-government and opposition activists injured 10 [...]

  32. [...] about the potential for renewed violence — especially after pro-government and opposition forces clashed on April 19 and were beaten back by baton-wielding police. Ten people were [...]

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