Lesotho signs for M81.5 million grant


Lesotho has on Wednesday signed for precursor grant towards Millennium Corporation Corporation (MCC) Compact Development Agreement to the tune of US$5.78 million (M81.5 million) towards addressing unemployment crisis, especially affecting youth.
At the signing ceremony in Maseru, finance minister Dr Moeketsi Majoro and United States Ambassador to Lesotho Rebecca Gonzales singed for Lesotho government and US Government respectively.

“The use of this grant shall be directed to four key sectors that are; agriculture, tourism, manufacturing and information technology. The government appreciates the support from the U.S government. The grant will help the government to implement programmes aimed towards the development of the private sector and creating jobs for youth,” said Dr Majoro.

In its long term development plan, Lesotho has identified the four sectors as key to boosting private sector, creating jobs for young people and promoting economic development.
Dr Major said the grant marked a breakthrough in the advancement of second compact for Lesotho.
On her part, Mrs Gonzales explained the grant as a precursor to boosting activities leading to the signing of the Second MCC Compact in the near future.

She said: “We have to understand that we still have a lot of hard work to do before we actually sign a compact between Lesotho and United States.”
”If we stray from the path, it will be even more difficult to find our way back again,” she said warning Lesotho against any potential delay or derailment from the path of national reforms, rule of law and political stability. She expressed a concern regarding increasing reports of corruption and police brutality “which are unacceptable and non-negotiable as far as the scorecard for signing of second compact is concerned.”
Lesotho first signed the First MCC Compact of US$362.5 million (M5 billion) in 2013 which mainly helped in the improvement of health system, including water management with Metolong Dam as one of the milestones

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