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ReNOKA capacitates stakeholders on ICM

By Mosa Maoeng

MASERU– Through the support of the World Bank, ReNOKA has conducted a planning workshop, engaging different stakeholders on how the Ecosystem Services Approach can be incorporated into the Integrated Catchment Management (ICM) planning.

Different stakeholders involved in the ICM, consisting of government ministries, development partners, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and academic institutions took a tour to Makhaleng, Puoete watershed to the wetland area, rangelands and croplands.

The Ministry of Water Deputy Secretary Lisema Lekhooana, highlighted that they need to have these kinds of training initiatives in order to equip Basotho with the necessary skills and techniques that would assist the country in hard times. He urged stakeholders to come together in order to overcome the situations faced by the country which is in right track. Lekhooana further said that this will ensure that the country will be able to sustain itself from any problem coming its way.

World Bank Operations Officer, Mafupu Mokoena, commended the enthusiasm of the Government of Lesotho to manage its precious water resources through sustainable management. “We look forward to continuing our collaboration to achieve Lesotho’s ReNOKA vision, which has a great impact. The World Bank Trust Fund supports countries efforts to improve livelihoods while tackling challenges such as decline in biodiversity, loss of forests, deteriorating land fertility and increase in risks from controlled forest fires and climate change,” she said.

Mokoena further added that through this initiative, the World Bank has been providing for analytical and capacity building to support the Government of Lesotho. She said that the World Bank is focusing on three major key areas which includes working with the Integrated Catchment Management Unit (ICU) to improve ICM governance, Road Directorate and the Ministry of Local Governance and Chieftainship to design and test a climate and environmental risk assessment and supporting capacity building around knowledge and data management.

“Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and South Africa share these water resource. Lesotho’s river catchments are directly responsible for 22% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) which is quite massy, and 30% of the employment. Also, the water transfer into South Africa is creating the revenue into the country but also the water contributes to over 12 million people and yields Lesotho almost one billion of annual revenue which is 3.7% of the GDP,” she Department of Water Affairs Lesotho Hydro geologist, Matsolo Migwi. She further stated that Lesotho is the headwater of the Orange Senqu river basin, which contributes about 40% to the Senqu river basin.

She further stated that the river basin is important for generating mere electricity. Migwi said that with these numbers it was important to take note of the importance of the catchments in the country but at the current stage Lesotho is at the point whereby the catchments are threatened because there is a dire situation of severe land degradation that is occurring. She added that this was not just threating the rural places but also the holistic economy of the country.