The Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Water, Mr. Lisema Lekhooana officiated the 10th SADC Multi-Stakeholder Dialogue held in Maseru starting on Monday.
In his official speech, the PS highlighted that the three-day dialogue will give provision for SADC member states to deliberate on how best to secure water, energy and food for the sustainability of the region.
He said the gathering comes at the time when the world is recovering from the plight of Covid-19, saying though virtual meetings are important, the face-to-face forum will give an in-depth while ensuring that the region becomes self-reliant.
Mr. Lekhooana acknowledged the challenges facing the region including Lesotho such as lack of access to clean water and the effects of climate change whereby various member states experience floods.
“In 2021, Lesotho experienced floods hence the destruction of roads as well as many losing their lives due to heavy rains.” He stressed.
Therefore, he expressed appreciation to the SADC Secretariat for the support of this dialogue, saying currently 22 percent of the Basotho in rural areas are set to be facing acute food insecurity, saying this is the more reason why this dialogue is crucial.
On the same note, the European Union (EU) Head of Delegation to Lesotho, Ambassador Paola Amadei said the EU is working together with the Government of Lesotho through Lesotho Lowlands Water Project Phase II. She added that this project is meant to strengthen access to clean water for rural communities.
Similarly, SADC Director of Infrastructure, Ms. Mapolao Mokoena said the dialogue will further focus on how to strengthen the capacity of the said sectors so as to attain the goals of the region as well as for the attainment of Agenda 2063. She said this dialogue follows those held in the region in 2015, 2017, and 2019 respectively.
Present at this meeting, included SADC Water Fund, ORASECOM, Global Water Partners, Giz, and German Cooperation amongst others.
Source: Lesotho gov