Liapeng Raliengoane

LESOTHO, Maseru – Goodbye is the saddest word. These words echoed throughout the farewell ceremony whereby the People’s Republic of China Embassy in Lesotho bid farewell to His Excellency Lei Kezhong whose term of service has come to an end.

The event took place on Wednesday and saw many Chinese and Basotho communities gathered in Maseru to mark this festivity.

While addressing the attendees, His Excellency Kezhong expressed sadness as he is leaving Lesotho and the friends he made during his tenure.

“This is my longest overseas posting since I started my diplomatic career 35 years ago and Lesotho is already my home away from home.”
“I am happy that during the past 5 years, we have witnessed great progress being made in China-Lesotho relations, which have reached new heights. On our joint effort against Covid-19 pandemic, we stood side by side, shoulder to shoulder, fighting the pandemic and China donated seven batches of personal protective equipment, as well as vaccines to Lesotho. Chinese medical expert group came here to share their skills and experiences with their Lesotho counterparts,” he added.

Since 2019 China has donated four batches of food aid to the Government of Lesotho, 2 batches from the Chinese government and 2 from the Embassy with a total of 5000 metric tons.

Last year (2023), the Chinese government commissioned a concessional loan for the 30 MW Mafeteng Solar Power Plant.
The 91km Mpiti to Sehlabathebe Road also funded by the Chinese Government concessional loan has already been completed and will be inaugurated soon.
The Maseru District Hospital and Eye Clinic which is donated by the Chinese government is also at completion and will be handed over to Lesotho soon.

“I am pleased to disclose that the Chinese Government has decided to donate a new batch of food aid to Lesotho this year in support of the government’s efforts against food insecurity,” he further disclosed.

On the side of the government of Lesotho, Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Relations Honourable Pitso Lesaoana expressed gratitude to His Excellency Lei Kezhong for his service to Lesotho.

He added that His Excellency Lei worked tirelessly to foster good diplomatic relations between Lesotho and the People’s Republic of China.

“Under his leadership, Lesotho has seen significant progress in infrastructure, health care, agriculture and nutrition amongst others,” Hon. Lesaoana further disclosed.

This year marks 30 years since the resumption of diplomatic relations between China and Lesotho.