Lesotho’s Highlands Water Project has the capacity to deliver its agreed 780 million cubic litres a year to South Africa for the next three years even if doesn’t rain, and even though implementation of pase two of the project has been delayed, says its chief executive officer (CEO) .
Lesotho Highlands Development Authority CEO Refiloe Tlali allayed fears Monday that the impact of last year’s El Ninho weather phenomenon in southern Africa might impact the scheme’s ability to deliver the amount of water committed as it marked 30 years since the signing of the Lesotho-South Africa water treaty on Oct 24, 1986.
Foreign Ministers of the then military regime in Lesotho, and South Africa’s then apartheid government signed the treaty with the intention to enhance the lives of the people of Lesotho and South Africa.
Tlali said: “I would definitely say it has been realised, as we speak, since 1998, water has been delivered to South Africa and citizens of Gauteng (province in South Africa) have been utilising that water. Similarly Lesotho has been enjoying electricity being generated at Muela.”
Under the terms of the treaty South Africa receives 780 million cubic litres of water every year from Lesotho and in 2016 Lesotho will receive 800 million Rand (about 57.6 million US dollars) in royalties.
In 2014, Phase II of the scheme was launched to build the Polihali Dam in Mokhotlong in the northeastern part of the Mountain Kingdom to increase its water transfer capacity to 1.27 billion cubic litres of water.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK.