- Thabo Thakalekoala, sub-editor and star reporter of "Mopheme", a weekly English-language newspaper in Lesotho, has repeatedly been denied information relating to the possible mistreatment of Katleho Malataliana, a former member of the Lesotho Defence Force (LDF). Mr Malataliana was arrested in November 1998, along with other LDF members, and later convicted of mutiny against senior officers and the government.
Mr Thakalekoala's investigation into the circumstances surrounding Malataliana's hospitalisation began after he received several tips from family members and other patients at the Queen Elizabeth II Hospital about the prisoner's ill-treatment.
Mr Malataliana was transferred from Maseru Central Prison, where he had been incarcerated since 1999, in early April 2003 after he suffered a stroke, reports Zoe Titus of the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA).
Mr Thakalekoala has been investigating reports of possible human rights violations against Mr Malataliana since being told that he was handcuffed and had his legs chained to his hospital bed.
An armed guard was also positioned at the door to Mr Malataliana's hospital room. On 12 May, Thakalekoala visited the hospital, where he personally witnessed Malataliana's ill-treatment.
On 15 May, Mr Thakalekoala's attempts to get an official response from the Director of Prisons were unsuccessful. He then attempted to get information from the commander of Maseru Central Prison, where he was informed by an officer, Lebitsa Lebitsa, that the commander would not comment on "internal matters."
The Transformation Resource Centre (TRC) of Lesotho, a well-known human rights non-governmental organisation (NGO), has also refused to take up the matter since, according to the NGO, its work relates to human rights education rather than advocacy and lobbying for change.
That same day, Tokoloho Khutsoane, information officer for the Lesotho Red Cross Society, informed Thakalekoala that the issue was not within its jurisdiction, but instead fell within the mandate of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) since the former LDF personnel were considered to be political prisoners.
Mr Khutsoane referred Thakalekoala to the ICRC's deputy head of mission, Pierre Dobbs, who is based in Pretoria, South Africa. However, there has been no response to date to Mr Thakalekoala's queries, MISA reports.
When Mr Thakalekoala contacted the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, he was informed that the Minister, Refiloe Masemene, was out of the country on official business. Mr Thakalekoala subsequently approached MISA's Lesotho chapter (Miles) about this issue. Miles hopes, through issuing an alert, to publicise the matter to seek external intervention to assist Mr Malataliana.
afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.
afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.