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Matekane pledges more resources for security sector

Lesotho's widely read newspaper, published every Thursday and distributed throughout the country and in some parts of South Africa.

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Bongiwe Zihlangu

PRIME Minister Sam Matekane has pledged to provide the security agencies with adequate resources to enable them to fulfil their mandate and achieve lasting peace and stability in the Kingdom.

Mr Matekane also appealed to international development partners to continue supporting Lesotho’s efforts to implement the security sector and other reforms recommended by SADC in 2016.

Officially opening a three-day ‘National Stakeholders Conference for The Development of The National Security Policy and Strategy of The Kingdom of Lesotho’, in Maseru this week, Mr Matekane said the security agencies played a pivotal role in rebuilding the country. Therefore, the sector needed to be supported with resources, he said.

“Without peace, security and safety, Lesotho will not achieve the social and economic development that Basotho want,” Mr Matekane said.

“Attaining those ideals requires commitment, dedication and sufficient resources. It is my sincere promise to this nation that besides availing more resources, His Majesty’s government will also do its best to improve the conditions of service of our men and women in the security sector.”

The meeting was held under the guidance of Deputy Prime Minister and Justice, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister, Nthomeng Majara, in coordination with the National Reforms Transitional Office. It was supported by development partners including the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), European Union (EU), Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and UN Women.

Mr Matekane said expressed hope that the stakeholders would engage in frank and constructive discussions geared towards the development of the envisaged National Security Policy and Strategy.

Mr Matekane has previously donated an ambulance, uniform and vehicles to both the army and police. He often lends his helicopter to the Lesotho Mounted Police Service (LMPS) to boost their efforts in fighting stock theft which is rife in the country.

He said he was impressed by how the reforms were handled before he was appointed prime minister in the aftermath of the 7 October 2022 elections that were won by his Revolution for Prosperity (RFP).

“I’m passionate about the reforms. As an ordinary Mosotho I would follow their progress through the media.

“I must confess that I was impressed by the professional and respectful manner with which the reforms process was approached and deliberated on.

“I’m confident that the National Security Policy and Strategy that you will formulate after this meeting will dictate the direction we should to take to establish a strong foundation for our security sector for the benefit of all as well generations to come,” Mr Matekane said.