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Another feather in the cap for King Letsie III

Ntsebeng Motsoeli

HIS Majesty King Letsie III is set to assume yet another important international advocacy role, this time as the World Bank Human Capital Champion.

King Letsie III revealed his latest advocacy role while officiating at the recent two-day conference on Early Childhood Nutrition in Southern Africa that was held in Thaba Bosiu.

The World Bank acknowledges the urgent and critical importance of investing in people to prepare countries for economic development and as Human Capital Champion, King Letsie III is expected to play a crucial role in raising awareness on the need to invest in human capital in different countries.

The latest appointment is yet another feather in the cap for His Majesty already has two international advocacy appointments. In 2014 he was appointed African Nutrition Champion by the Assembly of African Heads of State.

In 2016 he was appointed as the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) Special Ambassador with a mandate to raise awareness of and mobilise governments, international organisations, the private sector and the public to fight against hunger and malnutrition.

“For several years now, I have serving the people of the continent as the African Union Champion for Nutrition and subsequently I have also been appointed as the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) special ambassador for nutrition,” said King Letsie III.

“In a week or so, the World Bank will be launching the human capital project at their annual general meeting in Bali, Indonesia. Once this is done, I will officially assume another advocacy role as the Human Capital Champion and this will be at the invitation of the President of the World Bank, Mr Jim Kim.

“All of these advocacy roles carry a huge amount of responsibility considering the importance of the issues we wish to promote and highlight. Consequently, I feel obliged and bound by duty to constantly remind and urge countries to increase the efforts in fighting malnutrition, particularly in children.

“I call upon all governments in the region and beyond to scaleup nutrition-specific and nutrition sensitive programmes and policies which can facilitate a creator inflow of financial resources into the nutrition sector.”

King Letsie urged the governments to collaborate with the private sector to fight the scourge of malnutrition

“Governments cannot fight and win the fight against malnutrition by themselves. The private sector has a crucial role in this endeavour. I therefore urge our governments to engage the private sector and form partnerships that can assist in our endeavours to reverse the prevalence of childhood malnutrition and stunting.

“Since I have been involved in this field of nutrition, I have learned a few important lessons about the complex nature of this subject. I have learned that nutrition is a very much a multifaceted and cross-cutting issue which requires collaboration, cooperation and coordination among all the stakeholders.”

His Majesty King Letsie III said it was important that the national nutrition policies clearly articulate collaboration and coordination strategies and plans “so that all the stakeholders can work together in harmony and pulling in one direction towards the same goal of eliminating malnutrition and stunting”.

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