Lesotho first lady charged with murder of PM's ex-wife

Lesotho first lady charged with murder of PM's ex-wife

JOHANNESBURG - Anadolu Agency
Lesotho first lady charged with murder of PMs ex-wife

The wife of Lesotho's prime minister was formally charged for the murder of his estranged first wife, according to local media on Feb. 5.

Maesaiah Thabane, 42, appeared in court on Wednesday and was remanded in police custody as the hearing was adjourned till Feb. 28, South Africa's national broadcaster SABC reported.

The first lady surrendered to police on Feb. 4 after reportedly fleeing to neighboring South Africa when investigations showed her involvement in the murder of 58-year-old Lipolelo Thabane in 2017, the report said.

Prime Minister Thomas Thabane and Lipolelo separated in 2012 and their divorce proceedings were ongoing when she was murdered.

She was shot dead near her home in the capital Maseru in June 2017, just two days before Thabane's inauguration as prime minister.

Maesaiah has also been charged with the attempted murder of Thato Sibolla, a friend who was with Lipolelo at the time of the shooting and survived the attack.

Thomas Thabane, 80, leader of the All Basotho Convention political party, became Lesotho's prime minister by winning a snap election following a no-confidence vote against former Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili.

Lesotho, a landlocked kingdom, is encircled by South Africa and has faced political volatility since an attempted coup in 2014.