Wa­ter tar­iffs go up

Lesotho Times - - Front Page - Bereng Mpaki

THE Le­sotho Elec­tric­ity and Wa­ter Au­thor­ity (LEWA) has ap­proved an 8.7 per­cent in­crease in wa­ter and sew­er­age ser­vice tar­iffs which comes into ef­fect on 1 April 2016.

The in­crease comes af­ter a pro­posal by the Wa­ter and Sew­er­age Com­pany (WASCO) for LEWA to ap­prove a 13 per­cent in­crease for the 2016/17 fi­nan­cial year. LEWA is the reg­u­la­tory body of wa­ter and elec­tric­ity com­pa­nies.

The new tar­iff was an­nounced yes­ter­day at a press con­fer­ence held in Maseru by LEWA chair­per­son, Le­boli Thamae, who said they had re­vised WASCO’S 13 per­cent pro­posal down­wards to 8.7 per­cent.

He said LEWA had also ap­proved a rev­enue re­quire­ment of M234.2 mil­lion in­stead of the pro­posed M242.9 mil­lion for the 2016/17 fi­nan­cial year.

Mr Thamae said with ef­fect from 1 April 2015, the stand­ing charge for the Band A do­mes­tic cus­tomer cat­e­gory would be abol­ished.

Band A cat­e­gory cus­tomers con- sume less than 5 000 litres of wa­ter, with Band B cus­tomers con­sum­ing 5 000 – 10 000 litres, Band C 10 000 – 15 000 litres while Band D con­sume more than 15 000 litres per month.

This means that, Band A cat­e­gory cus­tomers will pay M4.51 per 1 000 litres, Band B - M48.54, Band C - M54.32 while Band D will pay M59.40.

For sew­er­age ser­vice tar­iffs, do­mes­tic cus­tomers will now be charged M9.70 for both water­borne and non­wa­ter­borne sew­er­age cus­tomer cat­e­gories.

LEWA Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Ntoi Ra­papa said the de­ci­sion to hike the tar­iffs was in­formed by WASCO’S pre­vi­ous rev­enue re­quire­ments, per­for­mance in gen­er­at­ing rev­enue and car­ry­ing out its man­date.

“We then con­duct out­turn ad­just­ments to see how they are likely to per­form dur­ing the cur­rent year. The ex­er­cise will give us an idea of how they are likely to per­form in the next fi­nan­cial year,” he said.

“We use the in­for­ma­tion to de­ter­mine how much rev­enue WASCO needs and by how much it needs to be in­creased.”

On her part, WASCO act­ing CEO Ma­mathe Makhaola told the Le­sotho Times on the side-lines of the press con­fer­ence the lower than re­quested tar­iff hike would force them to re­vise their plans for the next fi­nan­cial year due to re­source con­straints.

“With the 13 per­cent pro­posal, we had planned to im­prove our ser­vice de­liv­ery.

“The im­prove­ment of ser­vice de­liv­ery will go ahead as planned since we are en­trusted with the huge task of en­sur­ing that Ba­sotho liv­ing in ur­ban ar­eas ac­cess clean wa­ter at all times,” she said.

“It, how­ever, means we will have to go back to the draw­ing board and look into our draft bud­get for pro­grammes that may not need im­me­di­ate at­ten­tion and can be re­moved.”

LEWA chair­per­son Le­boli Thamae.

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