Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Lesotho to hold vote under heavy regional police presence

21 February 2015, 08:59

Pretoria - Troubled southern African mountain nation Lesotho's plan to hold a snap election at the end of the month was approved on Friday by key regional authorities who will deploy hundreds of police to oversee the ballot.

Six months after a failed army coup against Prime Minister Tom Thabane, observers from the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) Okayed the early election which will be held with 475 police officers from around the region keeping the peace.

"The SADC electoral observation mission has reported that the political atmosphere and security situation is conducive to hold elections as scheduled," said Stergomena Lawrence Tax, executive secretary of the 15-nation economic and security organisation.

The vote is being held two years early in a bid to restore stability following the failed August putsch that highlighted friction between Lesotho's military and police.

Security agreements

Tensions have remained however in the country of two million enclaved inside South Africa. Early this month a shootout between the army and the prime minister's bodyguards at a checkpoint in the capital Maseru killed a bystander and injured two of the premier's bodyguards on 1 February.

Speaking at a meeting of regional heads of state - including Thabane, South Africa's president Jacob Zuma and Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe - Tax urged all parties to abide by security agreements concluded following the coup attempt.

Lesotho's defence force will be confined to barracks on election day.

Also read: South Africa hosts Lesotho crisis summit

Tax said SADC "condemned any activity that would compromise the holding of peaceful, free and fair elections".

In 1998, post-election violence in Lesotho saw then-prime minister Pakalitha Mosisili call in South African soldiers for help.

The resulting bloodshed left some 50 civilians and eight South African soldiers dead, with much of Maseru torched in the unrest.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
4 ways to handle your cheating ma...

He is cheating. How do you handle him?

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Why do men choose second wives?

Why do men choose to have second wives?

Submitted by
Eugene Odanga
Wizkid set for twin Kenyan shows

Wizkid is back in Kenya. For two shows.

Submitted by
Eugene Odanga
Udada women's festival begins in ...

The Udada women's festival has arrived in Nairobi.

Submitted by
Uhuru pardons 2747 death row conv...

President Uhuru Kenyatta has pardoned a number of death row convicts, sending them to life sentences instead. Read more...

Submitted by
Eugene Odanga
WATCH: Kaka Sungura arrested in t...

Was Kaka Sungura arrested in town?