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Khasu challenges suspension


Deputy Leader of All Basotho Convention (ABC) Tlali Khasu
Deputy Leader of All Basotho Convention (ABC) Tlali Khasu

Keiso Mohloboli

ALL Basotho Convention (ABC) deputy leader Tlali Khasu has filed an urgent High Court application seeking to nullify his suspension by the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC).

Mr Khasu was suspended for three months on Sunday last week for allegedly castigating party leader Thomas Thabane during a radio programme.

In Mr Khasu’s urgent application filed on Friday by his lawyer Advocate Letuka Molati, he seeks for the suspension to be declared “null and void”.

In the certificate of urgency, Advocate Molati states: “Applicant has been unlawfully suspended with immediate effect without prior hearing and he stands to suffer immeasurable prejudice in these circumstances where he is transferred contrary to the tenets of natural justice.”

According to ABC spokesperson Tefo Mapesela, the Molisa Ea Molemo FM programme was discussing a circular allegedly issued by Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili to his supporters in which the premier chides the ABC for “unfairly treating” Mr Khasu.

In the circular, Dr Mosisili reportedly accused Dr Thabane of being “selfish” by refusing to give Mr Khasu the opportunity to be the leader of the opposition in the National Assembly as the Democratic Congress leader had done with his deputy, Monyane Moleleki, during their time in the opposition.

Mr Mapesela said Mr Khasu then called in to support Dr Mosisili’s statement on Dr Thabane’s “unfairness”.

Mr Khasu is also accused of saying some members of the ABC’s NEC misused party funds and that Dr Thabane made “poor” decisions that were negatively affecting the party without consulting other NEC members.

Mr Mapesela said the call-in by Mr Khasu was a serious infraction since the ABC deputy leader was supposed to protect the party and its leadership.

“This attack on the party leader was uncalled for. How can a whole deputy leader support a leader of a rival party instead of standing up for the party that elected him to a top post?” said Mr Mapesela.

Commenting on Mr Khasu’s court application, Mr Mapesela said it was a presumptuous move.

“Without getting too much into the details of the matter, to avoid jeopardising the case, Ntate Khasu was served with a suspension letter last Sunday by ABC Secretary-General Samonyane Ntsekele,” he said.

“The letter is clear that he was being suspended from engaging in NEC activities pending his disciplinary hearing.  The NEC is currently investigating his case, and will duly inform him about the dates of his hearing and if the investigations lead to no case against him, he would also be told.”

He added: “It was premature for him to have challenged the suspension claiming he was never called for a hearing or was never given a chance to defend himself while he is aware of the party’s modus operandi.

Ntate Khasu is the second most senior person in the party and he knows how it operates. The NEC was going to call him for the hearing following the suspension letter. He knows Constitution Section B (5) (F) of the ABC’s doesn’t allow him to be rebellious to the party’s administration as the deputy leader.”

On rumours Mr Khasu might leave the ABC and rejoin the Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD), Mr Mapesela said: “I don’t want to comment on the speculation because Ntate Khasu is mature enough to make his own choices.

“It is his choice and future. If he sees a brighter future in leaving the ABC, then it is up to him.”

Contacted, yesterday, Mr Khasu would not be drawn to comment on the matter, saying it was now before the courts.

However, the ABC deputy leader denied rumours he was mulling crossing the floor and returning to the LCD when the National Assembly resumes on 7 October 2016.

“Rumours that I will be crossing the floor when parliament opens next month are baseless and unfounded. I will not be leaving the ABC despite all the challenges I am currently going through,” he said.

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