Court issues arrest warrant for Manyokole
THE High Court has issued an arrest warrant for the Ministry of Health Principal Secretary (PS) Lefu Manyokole.
According to the warrant, which was issued on Thursday, Mr Manyokole ignored a High Court order granted by Justice Molefi Makara in March this year, which interdicted him from transferring Nursing Sister Masekake Nkuebe from Ratjomose Clinic to Mafeteng Government Hospital, due to her ill-health.
The court further ordered that Ms Nkuebe should continue getting her salary, which Mr Monyokole, as the ministry’s chief accounting officer, is said to have ignored.
Ms Nkuebe on Wednesday instituted proceedings in the High Court, in which she asked Mr Monyokole to be held in contempt of the judge’s decision. According to the court papers, the PS has been withholding Ms Nkuebe’s salary since March, despite her continued performance of her duties at Ratjomose Clinic.
On Wednesday, Justice Makara ruled “that the act of 1st respondent (Mr Manyokole) of failing to comply with an order of this honourable court made on 19March 2014 is a contemptuous conduct.
“The 1st respondent must be committed to prison for contempt of court.”
Justice Makara’s order was then followed by the warrant of arrest, which is addressed to the Commissioner of Police and the Commanding Officer for Maseru Central Police Station.
The warrant reads: “You are hereby commanded and directed to apprehend the Principal Secretary, Ministry of Health, Lefu Manyokole, an adult male citizen of Lesotho, whose office is situated in the Ministry of Health, and deliver him to the above honourable court to be dealt with in terms of an order of honourable Justice Makara J. This is in terms of an order dated 19th day of March 2014 in that the 1st respondent (Mr Manyokole) failed to comply with the aforesaid order which was placed at abeyance, pending compliance by the 1st respondent in according to the applicant in the application to be accorded all that the court granted her.”
The warrant also directs the Commanding Officer of the Maseru Central Prison to keep Mr Manyokole in prison, once he is arrested.
“You are hereby commanded and required to receive the said Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Health (Lefu Manyokole) and to keep him in safe custody until such a time as he shall be released after the period of detention order has expired or until he shall be otherwise lawfully discharged by an order of the abovementioned honourable court,” reads the warrant.
Contacted for comment yesterday, the Officer Commanding Maseru Urban, Senior Superintendent Mofokeng Kolo said the warrant of arrest had not yet been served to the police.
“We have not yet received any warrant of arrest in respect of the person you are referring to. If there was any warrant served to the police I could have known about it,” he said.
Repeated efforts to get Mr Manyokole’s comment were not successful yesterday as his mobile phone was continually on voicemail.