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's public service minister says he is acting premier after 'coup'

01 September 2014, 15:44

Maseru, Lesotho - Lesotho's minister of public service, Motloheloa Phooko, told AFP on Monday that he was the country's acting prime minister, after the elected premier fled the country during an apparent coup.

"I am acting prime minister," the minister said from Maseru, citing "cabinet protocol" for his appointment while the prime minister and deputy prime minister are in South Africa.

Phooko is a member of the Lesotho Congress for Democracy party -- which forms an acrimonious coalition government with Prime Minister Tom Thabane.

The party has denied any role in the alleged coup.

Phooko's comments are the first indication that a destabilising power vacuum seen since military action early Saturday is being filled.

Deputy prime minister Mothetjoa Metsing, also of the Lesotho Congress for Democracy party, is also in South Africa for talks, leaving Lesotho's citizens unclear who is in charge.

Before dawn on Saturday the military attacked key police installations, and surrounded the premier's residence in pre-dawn raids.

Prime Minister Thabane fled to South Africa shortly before, after being tipped off that the military was about to move against him.

The military have since returned to barracks, denying they planned a coup and claiming no political motive.

Phooko said he would issue a statement to the nation later on Monday, describing the political situation as "fluid".


Tags lesotho

Read News24’s Comments Policy

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

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
George Vodongo
Peter Kenneth will not run for Pr...

He clarified that he will not run for Presidency in 2017 as he supports Uhuru Kenyatta’s re-election bid. Read more...

Submitted by
Ben Wangui
Exams should not have political g...

He also said that school properties must not ‘carry any political portraits’. Read more...

Submitted by
S Mbinya
Matatu crew drugs female passenge...

Hours after the story was circulated on social media Sunday, the crew was traced at Dagoretti and arrested. Read more...

Submitted by
S Mbinya
How to get rid of cellulite at ho...

Proper diets and a healthy lifestyle are among the most effective natural remedies for cellulite. Read more...

Submitted by
George Vodongo
Peter Kenneth is not a good leade...

A local activist has slammed the former Presidential candidate Peter Kenneth for only appearing during elections but going underground when the country has problems.  Read more...

Submitted by
Ben Wangui
Javelin champion Julius Yego invo...

He is undergoing treatment at the Medihill hospital in Eldoret. Read more...