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Tenth parliament opens


’Mamohlakola Letuka

NEWLY-elected members of the 10th Parliament will be sworn in tomorrow in an event that is also expected to see the election of the speaker and the deputy speaker of the National Assembly.

The Clerk of the National Assembly, Advocate Fine Maema KC said tomorrow’s meeting was summoned by King Letsie III under the legal notice No 43 of 2017 dated 7 June 2017.

“The exercises to elect the Speaker and Deputy are solely decided upon by members of parliament and they are the ones who get to propose names for those positions,” Adv. Maema said.

The two are elected from the MPs or from other persons who are not members of the National Assembly, although a minister or deputy minister cannot be elected.

The election of the speaker is the first task of a new parliament since the national constitution states that the business of the National Assembly cannot be transacted when the office of speaker is vacant. The election will be supervised by the clerk of the National Assembly.

The developments, which mark the beginning of processes that will also see the formation of a new government to replace the seven parties’ coalition headed by outgoing Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili, come in the aftermath of snap elections on 3 June.

The elections were held in the wake of the 1 March 2017 no confidence vote that was passed by the opposition on the outgoing government.

All Basotho Convention (ABC) leader Thomas Thabane is set to become prime minister, 28 months after handing over power to his Democratic Congress (DC) rival Dr Mosisili.

A coalition of four parties namely the ABC, the Monyane Moleleki-led Alliance of Democrats (AD), Basotho National Party (BNP) and the Reformed Congress of Lesotho (RCL) announced on Wednesday that they had cobbled together their combined 63 seats to form the country’s third coalition government.

The ABC combined its 48 seats with the AD’s nine, BNP’s five and the RCL’s one, enabling them to pass the 61-seat threshold required to form government in the 120-seat National Assembly.

Dr Mosisili’s DC obtained 26 constituency seats and four PR seats and outgoing Deputy Prime Minister Mothetjoa Metsing’s Lesotho Congress for Democracy obtained one constituency seat and 10 PR seats.

They will become the opposition in the 10th Parliament.




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