Home NewsLocal Reforms consultations concluded

Reforms consultations concluded

by Sunday Express
0 comment

Ntsebeng Motsoeli

THE National Dialogue Planning Committee (NDPC) has concluded the in-district consultations which were aimed at soliciting public opinion and input towards the multi-sector reforms that the country is expected to implement as per the recommendations of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

In 2016, SADC recommended the implementation of constitutional, security sector, media, judiciary and governance reforms aimed at achieving lasting peace and stability in the country.

Last year, the regional leaders went as far as giving Lesotho a May 2019 deadline to have fully implemented constitutional and security sector reforms. But the deadline is set to be missed due to an interplay of various factors, chief among them the bickering between the government and the opposition. The opposition initially boycotted the reforms processes to force the government to make concessions that included the formation of a government of national unity, a truth and reconciliation commission, safe passage for exiled leaders and the release of what the opposition calls political prisoners.

The opposition eventually relented even if some of the demands including those for a GNU and TRC were not met, and the reforms process eventually got underway late last November with the holding of the first plenary session of the Multi-Stakeholders National Dialogue.

The national dialogue agreed on the district consultations to ensure that Basotho of all backgrounds were afforded the opportunity to be part of the dialogue process leading to the implementation of the reforms.

The month-long district consultations were expected to end in April but had to be extended by another two weeks due to what NDPC official Boitumelo Koloi said were hurdles that include the treacherous weather conditions and terrain which made it difficult to access some of the places.

“The in-district consultations went on well although unexpected incidences delayed the processes and the committee finished later than previously planned,” Mr Koloi said.

“The committee is now consolidating all the information gathered from the publics for a report to be presented at the second plenary session.”

There has however, been an outcry from some sections of society that they did not get the opportunity to participate in the consultations.

A group of Qacha’s Nek residents said work commitments prevented from sharing their views and they have demanded that the NDPC finds a way of accommodating their views in its final report.

One of the residents, Lebeko Chopho, said they have drafted some of their views especially with regards to their daily workplace struggles.

“We have challenges with how our employers treat us and we wanted to present our grievances to the committee. We could not make it to the sessions because of our tight work schedules. We appeal to the NDPC to find a way to include our concerns in the report,” Mr Chopho said.

Last month, youths from various organisations accused the NDPC of side-lining them in the reforms process.

There were other concerns that the many Basotho in the diaspora were not engaged in the consultations and the final report would be questionable without their input.

Mr Koloi said the NDPC was aware of the different sections of society that were not part of the consultations, adding the NDPC was working on a plan to have sessions where they could make their input.

“We are aware that many people could not participate in the in-district consultation sessions due to various reasons. Some people live abroad and could not make it home for the sessions while others were engaged at their workplaces. All these people’s views and opinions have to be included in the final report which will be presented during the second plenary,” Mr Koloi said.

You may also like

Sunday Express

Lesotho’s widely read newspaper. Published every Sunday.

More News

Laest News

@2024 – Sunday Express. All Rights Reserved.