MASERU — Chief Justice Mahapela Lehohla on Friday sang praises for the clergy for their role in the formation of a coalition government in Lesotho last June. In his keynote address to officially open the High Court session on Friday, Justice Lehohla said the coalition government “equals progress and national peace of mind”. The Chief Justice said “the Lesotho voters and the wisdom of coalition partners are worthy of high commendation”.
He said the formation of the coalition government had saved him the usual bother occurring after every general election, of appointing panels of judges of three per election petition lasting weeks on end which are heard at the expense of other cases.
Three political parties – the All Basotho Convention, Lesotho Congress for Democracy and Basotho National Party – formed a coalition government after last May’s general election ending former premier Pakalitha Mosisili’s 14-year rule.
Justice Lehohla said before the formation of the coalition government Lesotho was “typified by political wrangling, mutual mistrust and general animosity”.
Quoting Prime Minister Thomas Thabane during his school days at the then University of Bechuanaland, Basutoland and Swaziland in 1964, which was later renamed the National University of Lesotho, the Chief Justice said the country was in “unanimity in disunity”. “What was needed was a substitute for all the above heartrending seeds of instability and anxiety,” Justice Lehohla said. “That substitute is a coalition government, a trend towards the formation of which was spearheaded by all the goodwill of coalition partners with the clergy at the helm,” he said.
“May the clergy be rewarded richly for their effort and admirable commitment to peace for this nation whose founder proclaimed with unwavering conviction that motse ho ahoa oa morapeli I (the humble one will enjoy peace and prosperity)”.
“Coalition now! Coalition tomorrow! Coalition forever equals progress and national peace of mind,” he said. The Chief Justice said “humanity counts for naught where divinity is disregarded”.