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Minister lifts LNDC board suspension

 

Bereng Mpaki

Trade and Industry Minister Joshua Setipa has lifted the indefinite suspension of the Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) Board of Directors.

The Board met for the first time on Friday following its suspension on 4 May 2016.

The minister had said the suspension was to allow the restructuring of the parastatal tasked with implementing the country’s industrial development policies and promoting Lesotho as an attractive investment location.

Mr Setipa yesterday confirmed the return of the Board, reiterating that it had only been suspended and not dissolved.  The Board was appointed in July 2015 for a three-year term.

“The LNDC Board is back at work as initially indicated that its suspension was a temporary measure. They were reinstated yesterday,” Mr Setipa said.

However, the minister said the restructuring of the corporation was ongoing as it was a long-term process.

“Now that they are back at work, we are expecting them to carry on with their duty of assisting the corporation to achieve its mandate as expected by the government and the people.”

When he suspended the Board, Mr Setipa had indicated the restructuring of the LNDC was overdue and would be supported by the Private Sector Competitiveness and Economic Diversification Project of the World Bank.

The revamp, he added, was to enable the LNDC to refocus and concentrate on its core mandate.

“The LNDC has been mandated to, amongst others, promote and facilitate the development of industry in order to raise income and create employment.

“The Board’s mandate is to oversee the LNDC and ensure that it fulfils its said mandate. To this end, on a number of occasions, I have requested that the LNDC and the Board be restructured to enable it to refocus and concentrate on its core mandate.

“With the support of the Private Sector Competitiveness and Economic Diversification Project of the World Bank, the LNDC and the Board will be restructured,” Mr Setipa wrote.

“To enable this process, I have found it necessary to suspend the operation of the Board effective immediately in order to protect the integrity of the Board. Kindly note that the suspension is an interim measure and should not be interpreted as the dissolution of the Board.

“I hope you will appreciate the exercise of restructuring is long overdue and deserves urgent attention.”

Mr Setipa yesterday said he had engaged members of the Board and was confident they were capable of fulfilling their mandate.

“We have talked with the Board members and they understand what is expected of them. I believe it is something they are capable of especially if we work together and pull in the same direction.

“The LNDC has to lead government’s efforts in fighting poverty and unemployment which are of concern at the moment,” Mr Setipa added.

The LNDC Board comprises Liengoane Lefosa (Bureau of Statistics Director-General), Dr Lefulesele Lebesa (Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security), Mampho Tjabane (entrepreneur), Lebakeng Mohau Tigeli (entrepreneur), Makhetha Thaele (entrepreneur), Lehlohonolo Chefa (Consumer Protection Association), M Ntema, and S Ramafikeng.

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