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Lesotho First Lady charged with murder of husband's ex-wife

By Mercy Asamba | Feb 5th 2020 | 2 min read

Lesotho’s First Lady Maesaiah Thabane (pictured) has been charged with the murder of prime minister's previous wife.

Her husband, Prime Minister Thomas Thabane has also been questioned over the killing of his estranged wife Lipolelo Thabane. 

Maesaiah was remanded in custody after the murder charge.

She was also charged with the attempted murder of a second woman who was with Lipolelo the night she was killed.

Maesaiah, who according to the police fled the country on January 10 to escape arrest, returned on Tuesday afternoon and handed herself to the authorities in Maseru.

Police spokesman Mpiti Mopeli had told AFP News Agency that she had been hiding in neighbouring South Africa.

She spent the night in custody and was taken to court on Wednesday morning.

An arrest warrant was issued for 42-year-old Maesaiah Thabane on January 10 after she reportedly disappeared.

Deputy police commissioner Paseka Mokete told AFP that Maesaiah had been summoned for questioning but she failed to report to the police.

"We got at the State House at around 12 midday but were denied access by the guards at the gate," Mokete told AFP in an earlier interview adding that when they were allowed entry she was nowhere to be found.

According to the African News Agency (ANA), Maesiah tried to stop police from enforcing the warrant, but the high court dismissed her application with costs on Saturday.

Lipolelo Thabane, the estranged wife of Lesotho Prime Minister Thomas Thabane was shot dead two days before his inauguration.

Lipolelo was travelling home with a friend when both women were shot by an unknown assailant in 2017.

BBC reported, the couple had been living separately since 2012 and filed for divorce which had not been granted yet.

Before her death, neighbours told BBC there had been an incident a week before the fatal shooting, when a group of unidentified men were spotted hammering on the First Lady's door.

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