Tension In Lesotho Over Ex-army Chief’s Murder | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Tension In Lesotho Over Ex-army Chief’s Murder

Posted: Jun 30, 2015 at 1:40 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

The murder of Lesotho’s former army chief, Brigadier Maaparankoe Mahao, has caused an “explosive security situation” in the mountain kingdom, which the Southern African Development Community (SADC) described as a major threat to efforts to bring stability to the country.

Mahao, an ally of former prime minister, Thomas Thabane, was shot dead on Thursday, reportedly by a group of soldiers.

South African President, Jacob Zuma, in a statement on behalf of SADC said, “This unfortunate and tragic incident threatens to undermine the kingdom’s efforts towards the peaceful transition following the February 2015 elections.”

Lesotho is entirely surrounded by South Africa and is seen as strategically important as it provides 90 percent of the water supply to the city of Johannesburg.

The incident comes two months after Thabane, who now heads the opposition, fled Lesotho, claiming he was the target of an assassination plot.

The United States issued a statement from Washington saying Mahao’s killing “highlights the urgent need for security sector reform”.