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East Africa models Lesotho water policies  


Seabata Mahao

The Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP) and ReNOKA are among the water management projects expected to be studied by East African representatives currently visiting Lesotho.

The Lake Victoria Basin Commission (LVBC) delegation was last week in the country on a five-day study tour to learn how Lesotho and its neighbours share the Mohakare and Senqu Rivers water resources to tackle issues of mutual water resources management.

LVBC hopes to use the information from touring Lesotho to inform its own Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) within the Lake Victoria Basin.

The IWRM seeks to address the challenges the Lake Victoria Basin is currently facing to protect the Lake and its water resources for the future benefit of communities living in the region.

Lake Victoria Basin is the region located upstream part of the Nile River Basin and is shared among five East African countries namely Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, and Burundi.

It does not only provide the headwaters of the White Nile but is also central to the development and regional integration of the East African community.

“Managing innovations includes coming up with measures that could address challenges brought up by climate change. This study will enable them to generate new ideas through which water resources can be well managed,” said the head of the LVBC Mission, Coletha Ruhamya, during the tour opening ceremony.

The director of the department of water in the Ministry of Natural Resources, Motoho Maseatile, said LVB countries were expected also learn how well catchments could be rehabilitated from the ReNOKA project that Lesotho is currently learning.

“You will witness some of our national initiatives that are of regional importance, the Lesotho Integrated Catchment Management Programme and a transboundary water transfer project that demonstrates benefit sharing between riparian states, the Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP).

“We have noted with great interest that you are jointly implementing, among five partner states of Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, the ambitious Lake Victoria Basin Integrated Water Resources Management Programme, from which we look forward to taking lessons to improve our national, transboundary and regional initiatives,” Maseatile said.

The delegates are expected to visit site of water generation and catchment protection such the Metolong and Katse dams.

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