Boipuso (Independence)

Thirty-eight years ago, on 4 October 1966, Lesotho got its independence from Britain to become the Kingdom of Lesotho. People suffered before and have suffered since then. Others have died, as we sought and seek not only political, but also financial, gender, religious and all other li-tokoloho, or freedoms, that humans may want to have.

Independence from Britain has never meant much to me, and I believe the signing of the relevant documents did not mean much to us as a nation. We gained independence from Britain but stayed unfree as a people, for indeed, independence from a colonial power has not always meant freedom for the colonised nation.

Well, we got it, those 38 years ago, but we still have a long, long way to go. We aren't yet free from hunger, HIV/AIDS, nor gender discrimination. The state of these particular shackles, and of the corresponding freedoms they deprive us of, depends almost entirely on what we do, when we do it, and how we do it. I'll take this same opportunity to hope that we'll look back on the past thirty-eight years of independence and learn from our mistakes.