Home » Lesotho tycoon Sam Matekane sworn in as prime minister

Lesotho tycoon Sam Matekane sworn in as prime minister

by Yusuf Abdulfatai

Sam Matekane, a multimillionaire businessman-turned-politician from Lesotho, was sworn in as the new prime minister of the southern African nation on Friday.

His Revolution For Prosperity party needed the support of smaller parties to form a new government after winning the most seats in the Oct. 7 elections.

Regional leaders in attendance included South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who described Lesotho as “a refuge for many people facing numerous challenges in their home countries” over the years.

Matekane stated that there was no time to waste in addressing the challenges facing his country’s 2.1-million-person population.

During his campaign, Matekane pledged to broaden the markets for Lesotho-made apparel and to diversify the products exported to the United States under the African Growth and Opportunity Act.

The garment industry is the second largest employer in Lesotho after the government, with more than 45,500 textile workers as of the start of 2020, according to official statistics. However, about a quarter lost their jobs due to the global economic downturn caused by COVID-19.

Matekane founded Matekane Group in 1986 as a transportation company. It has since evolved into a multi-sector corporation with tentacles in aviation, property development, mining, hospitality and farming.

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