Maseru (Lesotho) (AFP) — A top Lesotho defence official has urged regional powers to “remove” an influential military commander for flouting a peace deal meant to stabilise the tiny African country two months after an attempted coup.
The defence ministry’s principal secretary accused Lieutenant General Tlali Kamoli of harassing rivals and marshalling forces, despite an agreement to relinquish his command.
Echoing a confidential letter to South African Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, Thato Mohasoa told AFP on Thursday that the Southern African Development Community should “remove” Kamoli, who is accused of being behind an August 30 coup attempt.
“SADC should use any means at their disposal — including persuasion,” he said.
Kamoli is accused of ordering a pre-dawn military raid on Prime Minister Tom Thabane’s residence and the national police headquarters.
Under a deal inked last month Kamoli agreed to hand over control to his deputy commander and exercise no “authority or undue influence” over the army during an indefinite “leave of absence.”
In the letter, first obtained by the Lesotho Times, Kamoli is accused of holding multiple meetings with underlings, stating he was still “substantive commander” of the Lesotho Defence Forces.