Between 1970/71 and 1974/75 economic growth averaged eight percent. However it slowed down to an average of four percent from 1982/83 to 2002/03. To accelerate sustainable growth and poverty reduction, His Majesty King Letsie III called on the nation
to join hands in preparation of a long-term Vision 2020 that will guide economic development in the next 20 years. In response, the nation came together to prepare the National Vision, embodied in this Vision Statement:
By the year 2020, Lesotho shall be a stable democracy, a united and prosperous nation at peace with itself and its neighbours. It shall have a healthy and well developed human resource base. Its economy will be strong, its environment well
managed and its technology well established.
As a first step towards the implementation of the Vision 2020, the nation has prepared this Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS). The strength of the Vision 2020 and the PRS lies in the fact that both are nationally-driven. The two documents are outcomes of extensive consultative and participatory processes that involved grass-root communities, the National Assembly, Government Ministries, the Private sector, Civil Society Organizations, Academia and Development Partners. In preparing the PRS, over 20,000 people (representing a proportion of 1:100) in 200 villages were consulted across the country. Their views were consolidated, analysed and presented in a report entitled the Voice of the People. These views formed the basis for determining the national priorities as outlined in the Vision 2020 and the PRS.
This PRS presents a determined plan in pursuance of high and sustainable equity-based economic growth. It contains medium-term objectives and strategies to address the major challenges facing the country. These challenges are: HIV and AIDS which is
devastating the nation’s human resource base; employment creation and income generation; improving food security; developing infrastructure; deepening democracy, governance, safety and security; improving quality of and access to education and health
services; managing and conserving the environment; improving service delivery; and, addressing gender-based discrimination that limits women’s access to productive resources such as credit and land, that are necessary for their participation in
However, these challenges cannot be overcome unless we focus our energies on implementation and monitoring of the programmes in the PRS, mobilization of domestic and foreign resources and enhancement of service delivery to the people. The Government is committed to the implementation of the priorities and strategies contained in the PRS. I therefore call upon all our people and our development partners to work together in tackling the challenges of accelerating economic growth and eradicating poverty.
Rt. Hon. Pakalitha Bethuel Mosisili MP
Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Lesotho