Lesotho election winner announces new coalition government – ​​KIRO 7 News Seattle

MASERU, Lesotho — (AP) — Lesotho businessman-turned-politician Sam Matekane is set to become the southern African country’s next prime minister after tinkering with a coalition led by his Revolution for Peace party. prosperity.

Matekane, 64, announced the new three-party coalition on Tuesday in the capital, Maseru. His party will join forces with two small parties, the Alliance of Democrats and the Movement for Economic Change, to obtain the parliamentary majority necessary to form a government.

Matekane, whose party was only launched in March this year, won 56 of the legislature’s 120 seats in last week’s general election. That was five short of the 61-seat threshold required for a single party to form a government.

Although he stressed the importance of governing alone to allow his party to implement what he called a “development program”, Matekane joined forces with other parties after failing to secure a outright victory. Together, the two small parties bring 9 seats to the new coalition, giving Matekane’s government a narrow majority of 65 seats.

Speaking to the media on Tuesday, Matekane said he chose the two parties because they share the same vision of reducing public spending and improving the delivery of government services to the people of Lesotho.

Matekane is a newcomer to politics but the leaders of the two partner parties bring their experience to government. Alliance for Democracy leader Monyane Moleleki served as deputy prime minister from June 2017 to May 2020. Movement for Economic Change leader Selibe Mochoboroane was minister of development planning in the outgoing government led by by the All Basotho Convention, which will cede power when Matekane is sworn in. office on a date to be announced.

Matekane said the coalition’s immediate tasks will be “to restrain government spending, stabilize the economy and unite the nation.” Lesotho is plagued by chronic instability and widespread poverty. He said he would hold a weekend retreat with coalition partners to chart the way forward.

Hundreds of people lined the streets near Matekane’s offices to celebrate his announcement of a new government.

Commenting on Matekane’s victory in his first election, National University of Lesotho political science professor Tlohang Letsie said his new party won because the electorate was fed up with the political status quo.

“The votes came from a place of anger… The election result is a clear message to all political parties that when people choose them to govern, they expect them to deliver on their promises,” a- he declared.

Matekane’s “new government must deliver, the people’s expectations must be met,” Letsie said.

Maseru resident Tene Mabuse expressed similar views.

“I want the new government to create jobs. Previous governments failed the people, they only sought to promote and serve their own interests,” Mabuse said. “I am happy that the Revolution for Progress has won because we need new players. We need it to create jobs.

He said Matekane and his party “should be warned that if they disappoint us, we will not hesitate to throw them out the same way they did with the parties we abandoned.”

Comments are closed.