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Lesotho’s former prime minister, Thomas Thabane, casts his vote during a previous election, Maseru, Lesotho, Feb. 28, 2015 (AP photo).

After Three Elections in Five Years, Lesotho Hopes for Reforms and Stability

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Last week, the political party of Thomas Thabane, a former prime minister of Lesotho, won the most seats in national elections and made plans to form a new coalition. Thabane has been a central figure in his Southern African country’s political turmoil in recent years, and he now faces a host of challenges, including trying to hold members of the security forces responsible for past crimes while striking a compromise on constitutional reforms. In an email interview, Samuel Severson, who is currently on a Fulbright-Hays fellowship in Lesotho and is pursuing a doctorate in history at Yale University, describes the factors shaping Lesotho’s contentious politics as well as the chances that Thabane’s coalition will be effective.

WPR: Why has Lesotho held three elections since 2012, and what were the main issues driving this most recent campaign? ...

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