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Chief assaulted over missing horse


lesotho-horse-south-africaBrian Chiwanza

THE High Court on Thursday ordered a Ha-Mokheseng man to pay his chief M42 515 for assaulting him last year.

Muhlokinyane Rampaleng was found guilty of attacking Chief Matlakeng Mokheseng on 4 June because of his brother’s missing horse.

Chief Mokheseng told Justice Tšeliso Monaphathi how he was assaulted by Rampaleng in his own village of Ha-Mokheseng: “He came to my house, and asked me about his brother’s missing horse. I told him I didn’t know where the horse was because it was not marked and he left.

“The defendant later came back and asked me again about the horse, and I gave him the same answer—that I couldn’t identify his horse because it was not marked like the others.

“The defendant then swore at me, accusing me of disrespecting him. He started addressing me by name, shouting that I was the one responsible for the missing horse.”

The chief further told the court how Rampaleng then started hitting him on the head with a stick,  followed by punches to the face.

“I asked him: do you want to kill me? And he responded, ‘yes I am killing you’.”

According to Chief Mokheseng, Rampaleng continued to assault him until fellow villagers came to his rescue.

Asked by the judge how he was feeling now, Chief Mokheseng said: “I have constant backaches, and my head is always sore because of that beating. My tooth was also removed during the beating.

“As a chief, I was humiliated and my wife can even disrespect me today saying you were beaten by another man so you can’t beat me.”

In his ruling, Justice Monaphathi said he was disturbed by Rampaleng’s lack of respect.

“The attack on you was unjustified and you were humiliated as a chief; that was extreme disrespect.

“I am not pleased with this gentleman for disrespecting a man of great responsibility,” Justice Monaphathi said.

“I am awarding M20 000 for pain and suffering, M10 000 for humiliation, M5000 for disfigurement, M7500 for loss of amenities, and M15 for expenses.”

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