20 January 2016

Botswana: Khama Saves Lesotho From Sanctions

President Ian Khama has managed to solve the impasse between Lesotho and SADC over the report on the Commission of Inquiry regarding the political crisis in the country.

In a press briefing on Wednesday, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Relations Dr Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi revealed that after the summit, President Khama - who is also the SADC Chairman - met with Lesotho Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili and convinced him to accept the report.

"Prime Minister Mosisili agreed to accept the report yesterday (Tuesday) and this changed the complexion of the situation," said Moitoi, adding that the Troika had earlier recommended either the exclusion or sanction of Lesotho on SADC activities after they refused the report on Monday.

Mosilili is supposed to share the report with other concerned parties, especially the opposition within 14 days, said Moitoi. Moitoi revealed that after Mosisili agreed to accept the report, President Khama informed other members of the troika about the development who then appreciated it.

"If Lesotho didn't accept the report, SADC was going to make it public but since they have changed their minds they will make it public," said Moitoi.

On Monday during the SADC Double Troika Extra Ordinary Summit, all Heads of state agreed to recommend the suspension of Lesotho from SADC, said Moitoi.

One of the reasons why SADC was not happy with Lesotho's position not to accept the report was because they have spent a lot of money and resources on the country, she stated.

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