Minister promises rural electrification
ENERGY and Meteorology Minister, Mokoto Hloaele, has promised to ensure the Malealea area in the Mafeteng district is connected to the electricity grid as part of efforts to improve the standard of living of the community.
Malealea is one of the country’s tourist attractions drawing local and international visitors. The tourists come for horse riding and an experience of the local culture in the form of traditional songs among other things.
The area is also on the route to the Semonkong area which is home to the world-famous Maletsunyane Falls.
It is however, burdened with several challenges including the lack of electricity and bad roads. Clinics and schools have no electricity while the Malealea Lodge has no electricity at night on account of the fact that it uses solar energy.
However, such challenges could be a thing of the past following Mr Hloaele’s recent visit to the area along with staff from the Lesotho Electricity Company (LEC) and the Maliepetsane legislator, Mpalipali Molefe. They toured the area to do the area assessment survey as part of the process of bringing electricity to the area.
In his address to the community, Mr Hloaele, said his ministry had prioritised the electrification of the country. He said delays in connecting various parts of the country to the national grid were due to the late national budget allocation to the ministries which was only done in July this year.
“Before connecting your households with electricity there are several procedures to be followed such as the survey, mapping of areas and also tendering for contractors who will do the work,” Mr Hloaele said.
“We will then notify you of some of the requirements once these critical issues have been met,” Mr Hloaele said.
For his part, Mr Molefe said that Malealea was one of the areas which needed electricity because it was a tourist attraction.
He further appealed to the community to update their electricity scheme payments so that there would be no obstacles when the time came to connect the area.
“To those who are still behind with payments make sure you find the means to finish. If it means selling your sheep to settle, then do so in time to avoid problems or being left behind when others get connected,” Mr Molefe said, adding electricity would certainly improve the standards of living in the area.