Tsepo Moorosi-Ntsupe Council COE

Date: September 18, 2018
  • SHARE:

Cllr Tsepo Moorosi was born and grew up in the rural village called Ha- Mapote in Qacha’s Nek district, a very mountainous district in the country with the 344 km from Maseru. He had always been such a very strict and traditional Mosotho man where most people didn’t really go well with him as they used to say he was just too complicated. Cllr Tsepo first encountered with Gender Links July 2014 when GL was conducting COE stages 3, 4&5 with Ntsupe councillors. His first and best memory he had was when it was time for Monitoring and Evaluation and they were supposed to fill in all those forms and there was a question in the attitudes survey asking if a man should have a final say in the family.

Cllr   Tsepo recalls that he actual laughed when he saw that question and he wondered what was wrong with GL to ask such question because it was such an obvious question that a man should have final say in the family  according to him and therefore he did not understand why should they had to be asked such question. He went on to say there was a time when he felt that he was not supposed to be at that workshop because it did not feel alright and he felt that it was just way too much going against his values, but he somehow felt maybe it would not be such a bad idea just give it a chance and he admitted he has never regretted since that workshop and for staying. 

Cllr Tsepo mentioned that growing up in rural village had always been a challenge especially for them as boys as they were denied to go to school and unfortunately he was one of them. He went to school for his primary, but he could not go far as he was forced to leave school and look after cattle permanently and he said he was not disappointed at all because this was something that was supposed to happen and he enjoyed that. When his parents realized that he was then a big boy asked him to go to South Africa to look for job because they felt that he was old enough to take care of his family. He worked there more 15 years though he was not able to come home regularly as he was working on temporary contracts. He was such a traditional man and it was his way or no way in his family and his wife did not have problem with that as he also believed that it was his man’s role to do that until Gender Links came, he nodded. 

He felt that he was tired and needed to come back home and he did not have much to do except being a very successful farmer and used to attend his political rallies. He did not know much about politics as he was not around most of his time. And he did not care much about them but since there was not much to be done at home he would go to rallies. When Lesotho went to the local government elections he was put on the list of people who would stand in for their party for the elections. He mentioned that it was something that he was not expecting at all and was not ready at all cost to be leader, but his people encouraged him and luckily he won.

He said the office life was something totally against him and it was so difficult to adjust as he believed he was just Mosotho man who can only look after his cattle nothing else. So a councillor he was expected to do public gatherings and find out what’s development his people wanted and also went back to the council to report. He was supposed to improve small roads going through his different villages, assist in the range management, water and sanitation and he said all those things were not so easy to be achieved as their council did not have enough budget for all those. 

As much as it was not easy he kept going and worked very hard. The only communication between him and his people was only public gatherings and during those he would talk about anything expect gender issues because he did not like the concept maybe he thought he did not  have much knowledge about it and what was all about it  that because he had never attended any workshops about it except hearing it from radios when it was first introduced and he misinterpreted it.

He mentioned that GL was able to explain gender issues in a very clear and understandable way as he was able to understand key gender concepts and immediately he changed the way he  was doing things especially in his family, he admitted that he only realized that he was not consulting his spouse in all decisions he was making that is why he laughed when he was answering attitudes survey questions and did not understand why were they being ask about  those questions as he believed they were just too obvious. 

Cllr Tsepo added that people did not believe him when he was talking about gender at his public gathering and was explaining these issues, they did not believe because they only knew him as a very strict and traditional man and they never thought at any circumstance he would talk about gender as people still regard it as women thing, unfortunately some people listened to him and they were happy that he has changed but others distanced themselves from him as they concluded that he has lost his mind and they did not think in any way that they can associate themselves with him.

Moorosi mentioned that it was such a difficult time for him because most people who distanced themselves from him were his friends, however he knew what he was doing was right as he got all the knowledge from GL trainings and understood everything. He believed in what he thought was right and his wife supported him so much and she was very impressed. 

Cllr Tsepo believes that it still a long way to go for people understand gender issues but he thinks it is something that can be achieved as he also went on and understood it especially because he was regarded as the most difficult person and he suggested that more public gatherings needed with the support of GL as he believes once people give it chance and get well informed information they will change just like him. 

However as much as he believes that there is so much to be done he admitted that one of  the reasons that there is  much misunderstanding amongst people is because of their different political colours and this causes so much troubles in the community and it is even worse in the council because all councillors are coming from different political parties  and therefore decision makings are very difficult but he added that he learned so much from conflict resolution module and how can  the council deal with their difference.  

He is finally intending to work very hard in 2015 will be working directly with men because he identified where the problem is believes there is nothing impossible. He also wants to teach people about gender issues and talk about these issues every day. He believes that people will change their attitude towards gender