SA firms implicated in Lesotho tender debacle
Publish date: 10 February 2020
Issue Number: 859
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
The Lesotho Highlands Water Project is at the centre of a controversy over the R113m it paid to consultants to conduct environmental and social impact studies for the construction of the Polihali Dam in Mokhotlong. Part of the consultant’s mandate was to also design resettlement plans after it was established that 534 households would be affected. A report on the EWN site notes that questions are now being asked about whether the consultants did carry out the work or if the project simply failed to implement the recommendations. At least 20 grievances have been lodged by angry communities in Mokhotlong but there has been little explanation from those in charge of the initiative. Four SA companies are linked to the project: the joint venture of Lima Rural Development and Thaha was awarded a R71m contract while Makhetha Development Consultants were awarded a R30m tender for resettlement planning.