According to investigations, the court declared Maesaih Thabane, Lesotho’s ex-first lady guilty of murdering her co-wife, Lipolelo Thabane. In June 2017, hired hitmen ambushed Lipolelo on her way home, shot her several times leaving her to die. The court convicted Maesaih Thabane after much evidence piled up against her.
Ex-first lady released on bail
The police charged her with first-degree murder. The police also charged her with orchestrating the attempted murder of Lipolelo’s friend, Thato Sibolla. The latter was wounded during the attack. However, the court granted her bail of 10000 maloti after the police detained her for 3 weeks.
“She is trapped in jail, she asked me to release her on bail, and nothing has been against the petitioner’s words,” Nomngcongo said. “Therefore, I grant (the) petitioner bail on conditions as prayed, ” he said.
Both Thomas and Lipolelo have been dealing with marital conflicts. At the time of Lipolelo’s death, they had filed for divorce. When she first posted for a bill after police arrested her, the court ordered her to pay 1000 maloti. The appeal court, however, cascaded her request hence the police arrested her again. The appeal court claimed she hadn’t followed the right process.
The 43-year-old ex-first lady had conducted an outrageous barbaric act hence needed to serve her deeds. Prosecutor dealing with Maesaih’s case objected to her releasing with claims that she might use the opportunity to flee. Despite the allegations, Maesaih claims she had no involvement with any assassination.
Earlier this year, the police had to pick her at the border in South Africa for questioning regarding the murder. She granted them full cooperation. The deputy commissioner reported that since she fled before, she can again.
“The petitioner has fled before and is likely to do so again. She is also very dangerous and has resources she can use to hire hitmen to interfere and eliminate the witnesses,” Lesotho’s Deputy Police Commissioner Paseka Mokete said in his objection to the decision.
Is Thomas Thabane also a suspect?
Thomas and the deceased were no longer affectionate towards each other and living in separate homes. As such the police consider him a person of interest in her killing. However, he denies taking part although it’s not a coincidence he remarried two months later. The police are investigating him and there is a possibility they will charge him as an accomplice.
The murder of the 58-year-old has landed Thabane’s political career in a crisis. Police allege that Thomas had paid the hitmen a down payment of $24000 to kill his wife. Thomas Thabane, the 80-year-old announced he would step down in July. He gave his reason as old age. However, it is probably because of the ongoing pressure as the police accuse him of being involved in the murder.
“I’ve worked for a peaceful and stable Lesotho. Today… at my age, I have lost most of my energy,” he was quoted as saying.
Is Thomas a sinking ship?
Following the many accusations, it seems Thomas has lost favor with his allies. His party members advocated he steps down, not wanting to be involved in his drama. It is unfortunate during his desperate time no one wants to go down with him.
He is running out of time as the police are building a case on him. Soon he will have no room to maneuver will be so humiliating if the police charge Thomas.