World Bank Approves $18.3 million for Transport Infrastructure and Connectivity Project
WASHINGTON, November 20, 2017 – The World Bank today approved a $18.3 million International Development Association (IDA)* credit for the Lesotho Transport Infrastructure and Connectivity Project (LTIC).
Under the project, over 27,000 people from 19 isolated communities in 5 of Lesotho’s 10 districts will benefit from the construction of footbridges that will link them to agriculture and job markets, as well as social services such as schools and hospitals. A total of about 35 footbridges will be constructed. The footbridges will be designed in such a way that they would withstand floods and other climate impacts and cater to the needs of females and males, young and old, as well as the disabled residing in the surrounding communities.
“The footbridges are needed as they will help save the lives of Basotho and improve their access to crucial services,” said Mr. Lehlohonolo Moramotse, Minister of Public Works and Transport. The project will also assist in improving ability to respond promptly and effectively to emergency and crisis situations.
The project also includes a road safety component which will support the government of Lesotho in addressing road safety in a more integrated manner to enable the government to achieve its objective of meeting the United Nations Global Decade of Action for Road Safety target, which is to reduce road deaths by half between 2010 and 2020. It will also support the government in establishing an integrated vehicle registration, driver licensing and traffic management information system, the Lesotho Integrated Transport Information System.
“The Lesotho Transport Infrastructure and Connectivity project is expected to improve access to services for communities in Lesotho where people are usually cut of due to heavy flooding and have to risk their lives to get to these services,” said Paul Noumba Um, Country Director for Lesotho, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe. “Additionally, the project seeks to build capacity for the transport sector to deal with and manage road safety. The World Bank is pleased to support the Government of Lesotho in its endeavor to improve the lives of its people.”
Together with improving the institutional capacity of the transport sector, the project will also implement Community Engagement mechanisms as well as HIV/AIDs and gender targeted activities to change behaviors and raise awareness on HIV/AIDs and other social issues in beneficiary communities.
* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 75 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change to the 1.5 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 113 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $18 billion over the last three years, with about 54 percent going to Africa.