By: Thoboloko Ntšonyane

MASERU – Prominent businessman Lebuajoang Thebeeakhale and former MP (Member of Parliament) for Motimposo under the All Basotho Convention (ABC) Thabang Mafojane have appeared before the Berea Magistrate Court on charges of stock theft.

The duo appeared before the court with Nigerian national Babatunde Akinyosoye and ‘Mamotlatsi Selepe.

This is according to the report issued by the Lesotho Mounted Police Service (LMPS) on Friday last week.

According to the police officer in charge of the Mabote’s Stock Theft Prevention Unit Inspector Maphau Makhakhe said they received a tip from a farm owner of one of the farms in Ladybrand, South Africa who reported eight stolen cattle and are suspected to have crossed to Lesotho.

The LMPS report says that Inspector Makhakhe’s office followed this led to Khubetsoana at Thebeeakhale’s farm where they were able to locate the calf belonging to the missing animals and carcasses. They found heads, hocks, offal and the pot which was used to cook the offal.

The farm owner, Thebeeakhale and Selepe were immediately arrested and the other two were later arrested as the investigations pointed in their direction.

The Mabote’s Stock Theft Prevention Unit officer in charge also pointed out that the farm where they found the alleged stolen property has been turned into an abattoir and butchery owners buy from it. He said some of the beef was recovered in some butcheries around Maseru.

The Maseru Central officer in charge Senior Superintendent (SSP) Rantoane Motsoetla is reportedly concerned about the animals that get stolen from either Lesotho or South Africa and cross the border destined to one of these countries. The stock theft happening between these two neighbour countries SSP Motsoetla said it tarnishes the warm bilateral relations of the two States.

He also expressed disappointment on business people who are involved in criminal activities. “I wonder what help they are expecting when they have their properties stolen yet they are also stealing for others.”

SSP Motsoetla appealed to everyone who sees crime activity happening to report to the police to take appropriate action. He also urged the business people to desist from taking part in criminal activities so as that negatively affects the country’s economy.

The Maseru Central officer in charge also said they are going to crack the whip on migrants who are involved in committing criminal activities.

This is not the first time Mafojane is found on the wrong side of the law on a similar offense as he was accused of stock theft in 2022 and was released on bail.

In this case also, the Motimposo former MP also allegedly acted in concert with other people in commission of this crime.

They appeared before Magistrate Molemo Monethi and Prosecutor Lenkoane was handling their case. They appeared before the court on November 10 and were released on M1 000.00 bail each and had to put a surety of M25 000.00 each.

The quartet is scheduled for another court appearance on November 21.