SADC on Lesotho


The assassination of Lieutenant General Khoantle Motsomotso, Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) Chief, has been called ‘a serious blight and setback to ongoing efforts to restore peace” in the landlocked country.

This is according to a statement issued by the Southern African Development Community (SADC) organ on politics, defence and security.

Organ chairman President Jose Eduardo dos Santos, who recently stood down as president of Angola, said the regional organisation “strongly condemned the indescribable and inexcusable barbaric and heinous act”.

Motsomotso was shot and killed on Tuesday along with two other senior LDF officers.

Soon after the killings became public current SADC chair, South African President Jacob Zuma said a ministerial task team would be going to Lesotho to assess the situation on the ground. He condemned the shootings as “senseless and regrettable”.

Dos Santos said: “This development is a serious blight and setback to ongoing efforts to restore peace, security and stability to the Kingdom of Lesotho. It is an unfortunate occurrence which threatens the prevailing peace and security of the SADC region as a whole”.

While not naming the miss ion members he said it would comprise the SADC organ troika ministers, SADC chair, accompanied by defence and security experts looking “to avert the possibility of further deterioration in security in Lesotho”.

The fact finding mission is expected to conduct an assessment of the security situation and meet with all key stakeholders in Lesotho to establish the root causes of the assassination and recommend appropriate courses of action.
“SADC wishes to reassure all citizens of Lesotho, Member States and the entire international community it remains seized with developments in the Kingdom of Lesotho and will spare no effort in ensuring the maintenance and restoration of lasting peace and security,” the statement said.