How Basotho intergenerational wealth requires re-thinking, re-memberment and re-setting.
“Here’s my instruction: walk in the Spirit, and let the Spirit bring order to your life. If you do, you will never give in to your selfish and sinful cravings.”
~ Galatians 5:16
As I stated in last week’s piece, the Solar Frazer GMBH v Government of Lesotho (GOL) saga is indicative of a culture adopted, progressively, by Basotho of passing on intergenerational debt instead of wealth. Elsewhere, I wrote that intergenerational wealth is of the material (physical) and non-material kind (non-physical). Since our colonization, we have, wittingly and/or unwittingly, been passing down legacies of intergenerational debt of the material and non-material kind. It is evident, with the morally degenerate culture we have built over the decades, that we are handing down, faithfully for that matter, even more existentially dangerous legacies of non-material debt.
Basotho, we are not only a failed state in terms of any credible global metrics that would measure progress and development, but we are also a moral and ethical failure. Someone recently said to me, “Naha ena ea Moshoeshoe” and I said, let me correct you my brother, this is not what our Founder, King Moshoeshoe I left us! We insult his very being, his essence, by even daring to allege that this is his country. It is simply not.
To state the obvious, I am an academic at the only public University in this country, the National University of Lesotho.
The NUL is simply a microcosm of what Lesotho has degenerated into. NUL is an institution where there is zero accountability for the most dastardly misdeeds that academics and non-academics can commit. This is an institution where the following has happened and is happening (some known to me and some alleged):
- Mostly male Lecturers, for decades, demand sexual favours from mostly female students in order for them to pass their courses including projects and/or dissertations. It is a culture. It is well-known. And no one worth their salt can even dare to dispute this. I now use the words “mostly” because, of late, and in keeping with “the times”, female academics have now joined the marks-for-sexual-favours fray and boys are now also being caught in this net of sexual iniquity. Imagine that, you are a parent (sometimes a guardian) and you proudly send your child to NUL, wide eyed with innocence and ready to embark on the ride of their life whose chapter will end with a degree…only to discover that when your child exits those NUL gates with a certificate and transcript, there is, an unwritten, ungraded, unassessed module “Sexual Favours In Exchange for Marks 101”. What do you think happens to that child’s psyche and moral compass? They join the world of work (if they are lucky enough to land a job in this kind of job market) with the sole intent of using their thighs (lirope) to get ahead…and they do. But, inside, they are damaged, broken, their innocence stolen from them by a ghastly male academic, an overlord in a little office somewhere on that campus, where he presses young girls into favouring him with their nubile bodies. What a shame! What a filthy thing to do to children who, often, come from backgrounds marked by severe socioeconomic deficits. What a crime to commit!
This then begs the question: What have successive NUL administrations done to address and rout out this criminal behaviour? Behaviour that has destroyed our social fabric for decades. I will answer that perfectly valid question next week dear reader and it gives me no pleasure whatsoever to be the bearer of such grim news.
- Examination papers have been leaked consistently over the years due, partly, to the behaviours described in No. 1 above and also due to administrative officers who, allegedly, run exam-question-paper-trafficking syndicates patronized by both male and female students. In the latter scenario, no sexual favours are exchanged according to these allegations, only cold, hard, cash.
- An allegation has come to my attention, since my return to NUL in 2019, that there are lecturers in one particular Faculty that sell crystal methamphetamines and cocaine to students. Why any academic would do something horrendous like this to the futures of these children is a question for the ages.
Mothepa Ndumo is a Legal Academic at the National University of Lesotho, a Pension Law Scholar in the Faculty of Law registered for a PhD focusing on the domestic investment of pension funds, a Thomas Psychometrics Practitioner, an Industrial Sociologist and Certified Executive and Leadership Coach. She is an Alum of the National University of Lesotho, the University of Cape Town and the University of Namibia.
Advocate Ndumo is the Founder & CEO of the Tataiso-Bhotani Group which has interests in corporate training, accredited coaching and mentorship and film, tv series and talk shows and publishing across multimedia platforms. Her passions are Lesotho, Afrika, indigenous systems of governance, history, young people and she is a lover of animals and of The Creator.
Mothepa Ndumo writes in her personal capacity.