Chinese-born candidate running for office in Lesotho promises jobs if elected

Photo: Basotho Pele/Facebook.

Photo: Basotho Pele/Facebook.

Published Sep 13, 2022


Cape Town - Jason Shao is an independent candidate running in the October 7 elections in Lesotho.

Shao has promised to create numerous employment opportunities for Basotho people if he is elected to parliament in the upcoming general elections scheduled for October 7.

Shao is a Chinese national and a naturalised citizen of Lesotho since 2006.

According to the Maseru Metro, Shao, a local businessman, is a nominee under a new party called Basotho Pele.

Basotho Pele is a development organisation whose main objective is to bring change to the community.

Social media was abuzz once again these past few weeks, after video of Shao campaigning in rural Lesotho trended on TikTok and Twitter, seeing a Chinese man campaigning for elections in Africa.

According to local media reports, Shao vowed that crop and livestock production would be improved through scientific methods, citing hybrid seed production, irrigation schemes and dry farming facilities, among others.

“Lesotho should have its own firms that manufacture motor vehicles, spares and electronic devices so that we do not have to buy everything from other countries, we should also export items produced in the country,” he said, according to Maseru Metro.

The electoral code of conduct aims to, among others, promote conditions for free, fair and transparent elections, free political campaigning and open public debate, freedom from fear, coercion, intimidation and violence, as well as to ensure no defamation of character and misinformation, according to a July statement issued by the Lesotho election authorities.

In January 2021, Xiaomei Havard, a Chinese-born South African businesswoman and an African National Congress (ANC) politician from Gauteng who currently serves as a Member of Parliament, came under intense scrutiny after she was sworn in as MP.

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