SOLD condemns LHDA

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By Itumeleng Koleile

Survivors Of Lesotho Dams (SOLD) National Coordinator Lenka Thamae said citizens are entitled to free water as it is a natural resource in Lesotho as it sells water to the neighboring Republic of South Africa.

Thamae said it is quite perplexing that some places in the country are without access to water although the Lesotho Highlands Development Authority (LHDA)’s water pipes pass through such places.

SOLD national coordinator argued the LHDA must provide water of to the residents of the various places nearer to the project and those who are affected by the project as they have been in some instances relocated to places without water.

He was referring to Baroeng in the northern district of Botha-Bothe, a place he said residents asked them to intervene as they are in dire need of water.

“We have been keeping a close eye on LHDA for a while now. It is heartbreaking that infrastructural issues are dealt with in this manner. All I see is danger,” Thamae said.

He said residents at Baroeng have also been told that they owe the Water and Sewage Company (WASCO) large sums of money, “yet they do not have water at their disposal”.

Thamae said at the present moment, Lesotho makes about M 900 million through water, yet citizens do not have access to water.

“It is said that they owe M75 000, M18 000 and M22 000. I am calling out to the minister of water and sanitation, Kemiso Mosenene to please attend to the needs of the Baroeng residents,” he added.

The coordinator said the government should not be allowed to engage in such monstruous acts and should be held accountable for wrongdoing.

He said just as the government promised in the 2007 government policy on water and sanitation to “introduce a cross-subsidy tariff mechanism to reflect water for basic human needs only (30 litres per capita per day) in the case where customers are unable to afford the lowest service”.

Moreover, he said the government promised to accelerate delivery of sanitation services to all Basotho in relation to the national development goals.

“How come since 2007 nobody had been supplied with water? We are strongly advocating for water to be free in Lesotho,” he said.

He said if however, the government does not deliver on its promise, they would be inclined to take matters to the court of law.

He also disclosed that upon his request on whether places nearer to the Metolong Dam would be allowed access to water he was told they would be included in the tertiary project.

“I do not even know what they meant by that,” he said.

Thamae said some residents of Ha Thetsane have fall victim to the LHDA project as their houses built upon their relocation were built on shaky ground.

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