The summit of the Troika of Organ on politics, defence and security cooperation of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) has called upon all stakeholders in the post-electoral political dialogue in Lesotho to ensure their availability and full participation in the process leading to finding a lasting solution to the challenges facing the country.
Dr Jeffress Ramsay of Botswana Government Communications and Information Services (BGCIS) confirmed that the troika has adopted some promising positions regarding the way forward.
Such measures include a convention of the warring factions, facilitated by the Christian Council of Lesotho and the SADC Team of Facilitators, with a view to establishing an all encompassing roadmap.
Last week’s Maseru meeting also resolved to allocate responsibilities among the different stakeholders, and set a timeframe to review the constitution and the electoral law.
“The communiqu├® states that the roadmap shall be submitted to the Chairperson of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation by end of March 2010 and will form the basis for the monitoring of the progress achieved in the post-electoral political dialogue” said Ramsay.
The SADC will also mobilize funds to breathe life into the process.
The role of the SADC facilitators will mainly entail technical support and facilitating communication between the parties involved.
“Mozambique President Armando Emil├¡o Guebuza, Swaziland’s
King Mswati III and Zambia’s Defence Minister Dr Kalombo Mwanza represented their respective countries, which constitute the committee that is handling the matter on behalf of SADC” said Ramsay.
He added that their intervention followed ongoing attempts to find a lasting solution to the impasse. The key players in the standoff were identified as the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC), Christian Council of Lesotho (CCL) and the Opposition political parties and the government and ruling party representatives.
SADC reiterated its support for the CCL in its role as a mediator in the post-election political dialogue, adding that it is important to ensure that all efforts are ultimately in the interest of the people of Lesotho. The Troika maintained that they will remain seized with the ongoing political dialogue in the country until a lasting solution is found.
However, the troika maintains that Basotho must themselves co-own whatever comes out as a lasting solution for the challenges they are currently faced with.
The Executive Secretary of SADC, Dr Tomaz Augusto Salom├úo attended the summit, and later paid courtesy calls to King Letsie III, and the Kingdom’s Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili.