New ABC leader Nkaku Kabi pleads for party unity

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By Mamello Mosaefane

All Basotho Convention (ABC) newly elected leader Nkaku Kabi and other contestants in the party leadership race made their first appearance together following last weekend party poll calling for a cease-fire and unity ahead of national assembly general elections.

Ahead of its end of January poll that produced a new party leader since its founding leader assumed office and got re-elected several times since its formation in 2006, the ABC leadership made a clarion call for long-lasting unity of its cadres.

Its new leader, Kabi was flanked by Secretary-General Lebohang Hlaele, Prime Minister Moeketsi Majoro, Chairperson Samuel Rapapa, Tsikoane constituency legislator Samonyane Ntsekele, and other party leadership members as they called for all existing party factions to be consolidated into one and chart a war forward support the new leader.

Kabi, with a magnanimous tone, called for his supporters and those of his rivals in the party leadership race to be united as the (contestants) have smoked the peace pipe even after some lost in the elections.

Kabi said their call for unity has been triggered by their respective supporters being divided and having conflicts over the outcomes of the elections and some making speculations that the contestants are having conflicts.

“We would like to call for all supporters of all sides to understand that our unity after elections is a sign that we are still holding hands.

“We have shown before Lesotho High School and we are still showing after Lesotho High School that we are moving forward as united,” Kabi said.

Kabi also urged ABC members to calm down, adding that as much as they are democratic, they should cease with innuendos and remarks insulting one another circulated through voice messages “clips”.

ABC founding leader, former Prime Minister Thomas Thabane hangs the boots, hands over reins of power to Qeme Constituency legislator Nkaku Kabi
ABC founding leader, former Prime Minister Thomas Thabane hangs the boots, hands over reins of power to Qeme Constituency legislator Nkaku Kabi

The ABC leader also requested “we should slow down on discussing party issues on public platforms, like Radio and other Media and turning ourselves into spokespersons because the things we say incite hatred”.

“There is a lot of things people say that are not benefiting our party,” Kabi said.

He added, “Like we had said while we were campaigning, our intention is to get to Basotho and give them hope that they can lean on ABC and we have started”.

He told the press briefing that he believes he was elected to lead the party because of the trust in him hence party members must listen as he gives the party new direction on where he wants the party to go.

Majoro, who was second in numbers following Kabi, said the unity Kabi emphasizes is not a new issue.

“We talked about unity before going for elections, vowed to work very hard to convince our followers that after Lesotho High School elections the winner must be our party, ABC.

“Our followers, ABC followers must accept the outcomes of the elections,” Majoro said.

Majoro further added he has come back having been invited by the new leader that it is important that we press hard on the messages we have been preaching before elections

He also said they have realized the defeated sides did not take the defeat well, and that it is human.

He however said their job today is to start consoling each other and helping one another to accept the results.

“We should remind each other that what has united us is to strengthen our party to get leadership power and work for Basotho,” He added.

Samonyane Ntsekele, who was also a contestant in the leadership elections, said he hopes all heal as they should continue moving forward as one.

“Above all, what has won is our party and we all must respect and abide by the new leadership’s decisions. We plead to all ABC members to speak only one word, a word of unity for the benefit of our party.

“We will win elections when we are united, caring for one another and guiding each other,” Ntsekele said.

Samuel Rapapa, who pulled out of the race a day before elections, maintained the acceptance he has been advocating for before elections.

Rapapa had during his campaigning said a true leader is seen by acceptance of the results, also adding he has lost in elections before for various positions in the party.

“I am one of the happiest people that what the four of us have been preaching before the elections is still maintained,” he said.