I’m tired of corruption and nepotism: Matekane

IRENE SEME

MASERU – The newly registered Revolution for Prosperity (RFP) political party has promised to do away with rampant corruption and nepotism, which has been at the core of cancerous decay in Lesotho’s status. Speaking to Public Eye following the launch of the party manifesto on Sunday, Sam Matekane said slowly but surely the RFP will cure the social ills of the country and ensure that every Mosotho enjoys their freedoms and the benefits which each and every Mosotho has equal opportunity to access.

In March this year prominent Lesotho business tycoon Matekane shocked the nation when he announced the launch of his newly formed political party. Although some Basotho were delighted about the move Matekane has taken, others felt that he is tainting his business image by being active and taking a lead in politics. However, that is not how Matekane sees things, hence he said the reason he decided to be an active player and take a lead is because he has realised that the “ship is sinking and needs a strong willed captain to save it”.

Two months in the political sphere, the Matekane RFP party launched its election manifesto at the beginning of this week, on Sunday, even before other old political parties. In its first-ever manifesto, Matekane said the manifesto is built on 10 major points which were found as most intriguing to Basotho during their consultations with the nation prior to compiling the manifesto.

He therefore said the manifesto is compiled based on the opinions and views of Basotho even from the remotest villages. Among the many promises, the RFP promises good governance that will not be biased when hiring but will rather use merit as a benchmark to engage everyone in government. Matekane pointed out that the RFP-led government will abide by important principles of good governance such as transparency, rule of law, meritocracy, equal opportunities, as well as zero tolerance to corruption and nepotism.

The manifesto states: “establishing and maintaining a system on recruitment and employment of good governance, personnel that is based on merit, competency, integrity and professionalism.” On this issue, Matekane told Public Eye in an interview that in the RFP-led government, people who will be appointed for government positions will be appointed on merit of their profession.

“We will ask everyone to present their credentials and they will be hired on the merits of their professionalism,” Matekane noted, adding that this way there will be transparency as only people with qualifications will be hired and will be able to deliver.

The party’s manifesto further notes that even for people who will be appointed for the positions of principal secretaries this will be done on merit and there will be an introduction of a performance management system for everyone to deliver without fail.

The RFP manifesto further states that once in government, the party will review and enhance the regulatory framework to ensure an ethical and corrupt-free culture. It continues to state that all RFP candidates for 2022 shall voluntarily declare their assets.

“The RFP, therefore, promises to implement declaration and disclosure of asserts and other interests annually by public office bearers,” reads the pledge. It further promises to empower the office of the Ombudsman such that, among other things, it has binding recommendations and decisions for enforcement. Matekane also called for voter loyalty if his party’s programme will succeed, saying: “I always encourage youth to register to vote because I have realised that they like to groove. So I am advising them that if indeed they want to prepare for their better future they should register to vote and do vote,” Matekane emphasised.

The RFP leader has no doubt that multitudes of people follow his party judging from the presence of people at the launch of the manifesto. He, however, made it clear that he will not rest in encouraging people to register to vote and ensure they actually vote on the day of elections until the message has come and that is when election campaign is over.

Since its establishment two months ago, RFP has stirred the political scene in Lesotho with many of the traditionally dominant parties in Lesotho redefining their policies and countering the RFPs coming in as a substitute instead of talking to their own policies.

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