#Top5atFive: Here’s what’s happening in Lesotho and around the globe

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This week marked South Africa’s celebration of the 1976 Soweto Youth Uprising, amid global protests against racism and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Take a look at what else has been happening in Lesotho and around the globe.

1. In local news: 

Lesotho and South Africa could soon come out with a template that might resolve Africa’s long awaited vision of free movement of people across the continent’s borders.

This follows a recent outburst between local imports and exports traders and their South African counterparts at Maseru Border gate, where strict border controls because of the Covid-19 outbreak as well as feelings and accusations of imbalances in cross-border preferences were themed to some controversy of altercations.

The two countries have since agreed to resolve their bilateral and trade issues almost immediately and this was penned during the official visit of Prime Minister Moeketsi Majoro and his deputy, Mathibeli Mokhothu to Pretoria last Friday.

[Lesotho, SA agree to establish cross-border benefit pact, Maseru Metro News]

2. In local news: 

Lesotho Highlands Development Authority (LHDA) has under its social responsibility programme established a business skills initiative aimed at equipping with life skills populations affected by its projects.

This ongoing activity also sensitises people at village level about the essence of establishing sustainable small businesses, learning effective ways of saving money and engaging in farming and agriculture among others.

The Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP) is a multi-phased project to provide water to the Gauteng region of South Africa and to generate hydro-electricity for Lesotho. It was established by the 1986 Treaty signed by the governments of the Kingdom of Lesotho and the Republic of South Africa.

[LHDA embarks on entrepreneurship programme, Maseru Metro News]

3. In global news: 

Burundi’s new president has warned opposition parties that they “would no longer get space” in the country, questioning “why should one oppose the government”.

Evariste Ndayishimiye made the statement during his hour-long inauguration speech on Thursday. He also promised freedom of expression and protection of human rights. He also called for Burundi’s refugees to return home but warned them not to destabilise the country.

The fast-tracked inauguration ceremony came after his predecessor Pierre Nkurunziza died suddenly last week. Mr Ndayishimiye had been due to take power in August after being declared the winner of May’s presidential election, in which he was the candidate of the ruling party. The opposition said the poll was rigged.

No foreign heads of state were present when he took the oath of office in the administrative capital, Gitega, where he pledged to defend the nation’s interests and unify its citizens. In his speech, the new president also asked media and human rights activists to partner with the government to tackle national issues, otherwise “they will be working for others, not Burundians”.

[Burundi’s new President Evariste Ndayishimiye warns opposition parties, BBC]

4. In lifestyle: 

Morija Museum and Archives has re-opened its doors to the public. However, this will be carried out cautiously, in compliance with COVID-19 directives.  

The re-opening includes the use of other facilities such as the amphitheatre and hiking trails to dinosaur footprints. To ensure the safety of our visitors and staff, the museum will operate under guidelines and regulations from our government. 

[NOTICE: Re-opening of Morija Museum and Archives, Morija Museum & Archives]

5. What we’re reading: 

News of Delekazi Mokebe’s appointment as Chief Executive of FNB Lesotho broke the internet last week. In this interview, Mokebe talks about the appointment and her vision for the bank. [INTERVIEW: Delekazi Mokebe – woman on a mission, The Reporter]

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Matlhabeli Molaoli
Matlhabeli is a reader, an Afro-feminist and a firm believer in the power of human-centered design to create lasting social-economic impact. She is a rising junior at Smith College where she majors in both Biochemistry and Anthropology and also dabbles in venture consulting for the local start-up ecosystem. Matlhabeli also enjoys dialogue so she has spent much of her time attending, speaking at and organising TEDx conferences in both Lesotho and South Africa during her time as a student at the African Leadership Academy.