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Lesotho's former first lady Maesiah Thabane arrested after court appearance

Her bail was revoked by the Lesotho Appeal Court last Friday, which said acting chief justice Maseforo Mahase had erred when she granted it.

FILE: Lesotho prime Minister Thomas Thabane (L), leader of the All Basotho Convention (ABC) political party, his wife 'Ma Isaiah Ramoholi Thabane and Zambian President Edgar Lungu (R) attend Thabane's inauguration on June 16, 2017 in Maseru. Lesotho's new prime minister took office at the head of a coalition government, three years after he was targeted by a putsch and two days after the murder of his estranged wife. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Former Lesotho first lady Maesiah Thabane was detained on Wednesday following a short court appearance at the Maseru Magistrates Court.

Maesiah’s bail was revoked by the Lesotho Appeal Court last Friday, which said acting chief justice Maseforo Mahase had erred when she granted it.

But by the time the police received the ruling, she had reportedly left the country to accompany her husband, former Prime Minister Tom Thabane, to seek medical attention in South Africa.

Thabane and his wife were linked by a cellphone call to the alleged killers of his second wife Lipolelo in 2017.

The former first lady was the first to be charged. She had fled to South Africa but she was granted bail on her return.

Complainants including from Thabane’s grandson and survivor, Thato Sibolla, went to the appeal court and it revoked the bail.

Deputy police commissioner Paseka Mokete said Maesiah was locked up and would appear in court again on 16 June unless her new bail was granted.

But her sudden unexplained departure from the country was likely to jeopardise her chances as police had already said she was a flight risk.