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Corruption hampers economic development – DPM

Deputy Prime Minister Mathibeli Mokhothu

Dec. 12, 2020 3 min read

3 min read

DEPUTY Prime Minister Mathibeli Mokhothu says it only through unity that Basotho can overcome issues of corruption while joining hands to improve the lives of the citizens of this country.

He made these remarks on Wednesday during the commemoration of the International Anti-Corruption Day, which was held in Qiloane, Thaba-Bosiu.  

The event was facilitated by the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Offenses (DCEO) in collaboration with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

The DPM said the day is marked by the United Nations (UN) across the globe with the purpose of fighting corruption which is affecting the development of most countries in the world.
Mr Mokhothu said Lesotho does not stand back on this matter as it is amongst the countries largely affected by the scourge, which has hindered its development on all fronts.

“We need to join hands while aligning ourselves with the Sustainable Development Goals for the betterment of Basotho,” he also said.
Speaking at the same event, the Minister of Law and Justice Professor Nqosa Mahao said the rate of grand corruption in Lesotho is extremely high and it pulls the economy down from all angles.

The lack of infrastructure development such as roads, electricity and access to clean drinking water, he said is a clear sign of how badly corruption can affect the citizens of a country.

Prof Mahao said for this financial year, a sum amounting to M25 million was allocated to assist the DCEO in its operations to fight corruption.
For his part, the Director General of DCEO Advocate Mahlomola Manyokole said the organisation encounters serious challenges that include among others, lack of trained personnel and an urgent need for a court that specialises in anti-corruption cases.

The DCEO, he also said is less known in some parts of the country, hence, it should be decentralised, adding that the body will soon open offices in Leribe and Mohale's Hoek.
On behalf of the UNDP, Betty Wabunoha said her organisation has been working with the DCEO since 2014 in realising the need to integrate anti-corruption strategies.
Ms Wabunoha said Lesotho appears at the top of the list of the least developed countries which are also severely affected by corruption.

“This is an indication that there is still the need to implement and strengthen strategies to fight corruption in Lesotho,” she also said.

Director General of DCEO Adv Mahlomola Manyokole

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The commemoration commenced with tree planting in Qiloane which was led by the DPM.
The International Anti-Corruption Day has been observed annually on December 9, since the passage of the United Nations Convention against corruption on October 31, 2003 with a view to raise public awareness for anti-corruption.
The Convention states in part that the UN established this day concerned about the seriousness of problems and threats posed by corruption to the stability and security of societies.

It further states that corruption undermines institutions and values of democracy, ethical values and justice as well as jeopardises sustainable development and the rule of law.

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