Lipolelo Thabane

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Lipolelo Thabane (1959 – June 14, 2017) was a Mosotho political figure and former wife of prime minister Tom Thabane. She was murdered on June 14, 2017, two days before the inauguration of Tom Thabane.[1]


Lipolelo Thabane was born in Basutoland to a family of five siblings, of which she was the youngest. She had two children and was the second wife of Tom Thabane whom she married in 1987. She was shot down and killed while driving home on June 14, 2017, in Ha Masana, two days before Tom Thabane was set to be inaugurated as prime minister of Lesotho.[2]

During the political violence in the Kingdom of Lesotho, Lipolelo Thabane relocated to South African city of Sandton, Johannesburg.[3]

Despite the situation of her divorce from Tom Thabane, the court declared her first lady of Lesotho during Thabane's first run for the prime minister position, instead of his newly customarily wed wife. This was issued on the basis that their filed divorce was not yet granted.[3][4][5] In February 2020, Maesaiah Thabane, Thabane's widower's current wife, was investigated for Thabane's murder.[6]


  1. ^ Editorial, Reuters. "Incoming Lesotho Prime Minister's wife shot dead: police". AF. Retrieved 2017-11-21.
  2. ^ "Lesotho: Burial for Lipolelo Thabane planned for June 30 | Africa Times". Retrieved 2017-11-21.
  3. ^ a b "Sketchy details of Basotho 'First lady' shooting emerges » News & Information ZA". News & Information ZA. 2017-06-15. Retrieved 2017-11-21.
  4. ^ "Lesotho first lady 'attacked' at home days before being shot dead". 702. Retrieved 2017-11-21.
  5. ^ "SADC Wrap: Murder mystery in Lesotho while MPs suspended in Zambia | Daily Maverick". Retrieved 2017-11-21.
  6. ^ McKenzie, David; Swails, Brent (2020-02-12). "Murder investigation grips tiny kingdom of Lesotho". CNN. Retrieved 2020-02-12.