ElectionGudie
Lesotho

Kingdom of Lesotho

1,936,181 5

Population (as of July 1, 2013)

Elections in our database

60.60%

Registered Voters (as of )

Average Turnout

Name Official Name Type
National Assembly Lower House
Prime Minister Prime Minister Head of Government
Senate Upper House
King King Head of State

Description of government structure:

  • Chief of State: King LETSIE III *
  • Head of Government: Prime Minister Thomas THABANE
  • Assembly: Lesotho has a bicameral Parliament consisting of the Senate with 33 seats and the National Assembly with 120 seats.

* The monarch is hereditary. Under traditional law, the college of chiefs has the power to depose and/or invest a monarch.

Description of electoral system:

  • The King is the hereditary head of state.
  • The Prime Minister is selected by parliament.
  • In the Senate, 22 members are reserved for tribal leaders to serve 5-year terms and 11 members are appointed by the ruling party to serve 5-year terms. In the National Assembly, 80 members are elected by plurality vote in single-member constituencies to serve 5-year terms and 40 members are elected through a closed-list proportional representation system to serve 5-year terms.**

** Lesotho uses a unique method of Mixed-Member Proportional Representation (MMP). Voters receive two ballots on Election Day; the first is used to vote for a candidate in the nominal tier, while the second is for the party list tier. The list tier ballot is used to determine the number of seats each party would receive if the system was fully proportional. Seats are allocated using a variant of the Hare Quota. The total number of votes cast on the party ballot is divided by the total number of seats at stake in the national assembly (Normally 120) in a given election. The number of votes each party received on the party ballot is divided by this quota to determine how many seats it deserves to receive.
By calculating the quota with the total number of open seats (as opposed to just seats in the PR tier) it can be determined how many seats a party should have won if the system was perfectly proportional. This number is than compared to the seats a party won in the nominal tier to determine how many seats it should be awarded in the list tier. (For example, if a party is determined to deserve 20 seats and it won 10 in the nominal tier, it will be given an additional 10 seats).
If this allocation fails to proportionally allocate seats (parties still being more or less seats than they deserve based on the PR tier results) the quota is recalculated, but this time excluding the seats for those parties which had won more than their fair share in the nominal tier. The 40 PR seats are than awarded using this new quota.

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Elections

Election For Date Votes Registered Voters Turn Out
National Assembly 1998-05-23 595,955 837,610 71.15%
National Assembly 2002-05-25 - 831,315 -
National Assembly 2007-02-17 - 916,230 -
National Assembly 2012-05-26 564,451 1,127,980 50.04%
National Assembly 2015-02-28 - - -

Voter Turnout