’Marafaele Mohloboli/Moroke Sekoboto
DEMOCRATIC Congress (DC) leader, Mathibeli Mokhothu, has reiterated his pledge to use Lesotho’s mineral resources to grow the economy.
Addressing DC supporters at a weekend rally in Sekamaneng, Berea, Mr Mokhothu said upon winning the 7 October 2022 elections, his government would work hard to improve the welfare of the people.
He said that Lesotho is endowed with minerals such as diamonds. Proceeds from their sale should be used to develop the country, especially marginalised areas.
“The country has abundant natural resources enough to improve its economy, provided they are well managed. We will ensure that this happens,” Mr Mokhothu said.
He said his government would take advantage of the country’s abundant water sources to establish bottling companies to serve the local and global market.
He also promised to open over 30 diamonds mines across the country within five years of assuming power. These would comprise both small and large-scale mines and would be owned by Basotho, unlike the industrial firms which are owned by foreigners.
The DC leader said his government would further empower SMMEs so that they can play an active role in job creation.
It would also create a conducive climate for businesses to thrive.
“We will create a platform for businesses to flourish and be able to compete on global stage. We will also establish a development bank to fund local businesses.”
A DC government would also review Lesotho’s foreign policy on peace and maintain good relations with South Africa and other development partners.
“DC will ensure free movement of Basotho and easy passage into South Africa as many Basotho work there in the mines and other sectors,” Mr Mokhothu said.
He pledged to engage in negotiations with South Africa with a view to establish a corridor to the sea as Lesotho is landlocked by its giant neighbour.
Access to the sea will reduce Lesotho’s economic dependence on South Africa and enable it to establish its own independent trade with the rest of the world, he said.
A DC government would also ensure human rights and good governance are protected.
“We will promote and protect human rights in the country as required by our development partners and international treaties, to which Lesotho is a signatory,” Mr Mokhothu said.
His government would also improve the country’s education system to ensure that more people can have access to education.