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Former first family face music for murder

Business

…as Thabane, Maesaiah make court appearance

Mohloai Mpesi

The former Prime Minister, Motsoahae Thomas Thabane and his wife Maesiah appeared before the Assistant Registrar of the High Court of Lesotho Tebello Mokhoema for an interview in preparation for trial in relation to the murder of his late second wife and former First Lady Lipolelo Thabane some four years ago.

According to the indictment of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) Hlalefang Motinyane which was read by Mokhoema in the High Court conference this week, the duo is charged on four counts.   

According to Mokhoema, the infamous couple was named in the gunning down of Lipolelo on the fateful night of June 14, 2017 along with the illustrious Famo song writer, composer and singer, the late Rethabile Mokete well-known by his stage name “Mosotho Chakela” who has since died.  

“Maesiah Thabane, a Mosotho female adult, First Lady at that time, Motsoahae Thomas Thabane, a Mosotho male adult and the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Lesotho then. Rethabile Chakela, Sebata Joseph Sello Lieta, Macheli Koeshe, Molefi Matima Mokata, hereinafter called the accused are accused of contravening section 40 (1) of the Penal Code Act Number 6 of 2010 read with section 40 (2) and (26).

“In that upon or about June 14, 2017 at or near Ha Masana in the district of Maseru, the said accused did unlawfully and intentionally cause the death of Thabane, an adult Mosotho female (wife of Prime Minister) such death resulting from their acts or omission of the accused,” Mokhoema said.

She went on to read that the very same accused are “guilty of the crime of contravening section 25 read with section 40 (1) (2) and 26 (1) of the penal code 2010 and number 6 of 2012. In that upon or about June 14, 2017 at or near Vicksburg in the Republic of South Africa, the said accused unlawfully and intentionally conspired to cause the death of Thabane, such death resulting from their acts or omission of the accused.

“The accused are also guilty of contravening section 22 of the Penal Code number 6 of 2010. In that upon or about June 14, 2017 at or near Ha ‘Masana in the district of Maseru, the said accused in furtherance of shared common intention or a common purpose did unlawfully and intentionally attempt to cause the death of Thato Sibolla, an adult Mosotho female into risking her death by shooting into vehicle in which she was a passenger and was shot on her foot and stomach with a gun,” she said.

She said the accused are also suspected for damaging the body of and the interior of the said vehicle, a grey Chevrolet Van with registration number MM795, the property of Lipolelo Thabane, “by firing at the said motor vehicle with a gun and did thereby cause damage to the body and the interior of the said motor vehicle”.

She stated that the case has been set for March 8 to 10, 2022 before Justicce Molefi Makara.

The duo was questioned in regard to their Chief, where they live and their next of kin in the presence of their legal counsels, advocate Salemane Phafane KC who represents Maesaiah Thabane and advocate Qhalehang Letsika who represents Motsoahae Thabane.

However, Mokhoema decided to omit some details for the interview which she labelled “confidential information” citing that “it is not a normal interview like we used to do.”

“We are not going to expose their phone numbers because it is very confidential as well as some of the information,” she said.

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