Letsie III

Letsie III of Lesotho

Letsie III
Letsie III.jpg
King of Lesotho
Reign 7 February 1996 – present
Coronation 31 October 1997
Predecessor Mamohato (Regent)
Moshoeshoe II
Heir apparent Lerotholi Seeiso
Prime Ministers
Reign 12 November 1990 – 25 January 1995
Prime Ministers
 
Born (1963-07-17) 17 July 1963 
Scott Hospital, Morija, Basutoland (now Lesotho)
Spouse Anna Motšoeneng
Issue
Detail
Senate Seeiso
‘Maseeiso
Lerotholi Seeiso
Full name
David Mohato Bereng Seeiso
House House of Moshesh
Father Moshoeshoe II
Mother Mamohato
Religion Roman Catholicism

Letsie III  is the king of Lesotho. He succeeded his father, Moshoeshoe II, when the latter was forced into exile in 1990. His father was briefly restored in 1995 but soon died in a car crash in early 1996, and Letsie became king again. As a constitutional monarch, most of King Letsie’s duties as monarch of Lesotho are ceremonial.

Biography

He was educated in the United Kingdom at Ampleforth College. From there he went on to study at the National University of Lesotho where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Law. He then went on to study at the University of Bristol (Diploma in English Legal Studies, 1986), Wolfson College, Cambridge (Development Studies, 1989), and Wye College (Agricultural Economics). He completed his studies in 1989, when he returned to Lesotho.

He was installed as the Principal Chief of Matsieng on 16 December 1989.

His coronation took place on 31 October 1997 at Setsoto Stadium. Charles, Prince of Wales attended the ceremony.

On 1 December 2016, in Rome, King Letsie III was appointed as FAO’s newest Special Ambassador for Nutrition by the Organization’s Director-General, José Graziano da Silva. 

King Letsie III of Lesotho

The Kingdom of Lesotho is often described as one of the poorest countries in the world.
In addition to continued political instability, the nation is facing many serious social problems.
Poverty and unemployment rates are high, violent crimes are common, and there are many reports of rape and abuse against women. With 25 percent of the people identified as HIV-positive, Aids/HIV rates are among of the highest in the world.
But there are also sources of stability and wealth: Most people in Lesotho own their own land and their own homes. They speak the same language and share the same religion.
It is a democratic country where people have a chance to express their views, and they have a king who is willing and anxious to help – if only they let him.
Unlike the other African monarchies in Morocco and Swaziland where the king plays an important role in politics, Lesotho is a constitutional monarchy with a king whose powers are largely ceremonial.
“I have no constitutional powers to intervene in public affairs or settle disputes that may arise between different political factions or between sections of the population and their political leaders. So it does cause, sometimes, a bit of a problem or a frustration on my part,” King Letsie III of Lesotho tells Al Jazeera.
But that may be about to change. In a conversation with Al Jazeera, the king suggests he is ready to play a larger role in politics – but under certain conditions.

Royal family of Lesotho
Coat of arms of Lesotho.svg
  • HM The King
    HM The Queen

    • HRH Princess Senate
    • HRH Princess ‘Maseeiso
    • HRH Prince Lerotholi
  • HRH Prince Seeiso
    HRH Princess ‘Mabereng

    • HRH Prince Bereng
    • HRH Princess ‘Masentle
    • HRH Prince Masupha


“I’m committed to the principles of a constitutional monarchy. However, if there is a view among the population that I could have a role in one way or another – there is a process of reform that is about to begin, reforming the Constitution … if the people say this is what we want, then I am ready for it,” the king tells Al Jazeera.
“But we must be careful that … we don’t surrender the principles of the constitutional monarchy, and we do not, at the same time, try to usurp the powers of the elected government. So it will have to be a very balanced exercise…. but in the end, it depends on the views of the people and the leadership.”
So what is next for the landlocked Kingdom of Lesotho and its king?
King Letsie III talks to Al Jazeera about political instability and reforms, the HIV epidemic, the controversy surrounding Katze dam, and his special relationship with Robert Mugabe.(This part of the article is taken from Al Jazeera)

Marriage and children

King Letsie married in 2000 to Karabo Motšoeneng, with whom he has two daughters and one son:

  • Princess Mary Senate Mohato Seeiso, born 7 October 2001.
  • Princess ‘Maseeiso, born 20 November 2004.
  • Prince Lerotholi David Mohato Bereng Seeiso, born 18 April 2007.

Patronages

  • Patron of the Prince Mohato Award (Khau ea Khosana Mohato).

Honours

National honours

  •  Lesotho : Grand Master of the Most Dignified Order of Moshoeshoe.
    Styles of
    King Letsie III of Lesotho
     
    Coat of arms of Lesotho.svg  
    Reference style His Majesty
    Spoken style Your Majesty
    Alternative style Sir
  •  Lesotho : Grand Master of the Most Courteous Order of Lesotho.
  •  Lesotho : Grand Master of the Most Meritorious Order of Mohlomi.
  •  Lesotho : Grand Master of the Most Loyal Order of Ramatseatsane.
  •  Lesotho : Outstanding Service Medal.

Foreign honours

  •  Italy :
    • Kingdom of the Two Sicilies Two Sicilian Royal Family: Bailiff Knight Grand Cross of Justice of the Two Sicilian Royal Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George (8 October 2013).
  • From Wikipedia

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