‘Work cut out for new WASCO boss’
NEW Water and Sewerage Company (WASCO) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Lehlohonolo Manamolela has a major task on his hands to provide affordable safe drinking water and address sanitation challenges facing consumers.
This is the view of civil society organisation, Development for Peace Education (DPE), following Mr Manamolela’s appointment on Monday to succeed Mathealira Lerotholi whose three-year contract expired earlier this year.
According to a WASCO press statement issued yesterday, Mr Manamolela would be charged with spearheading the take over control of the Metolong Dam and Water Supply Programme that is meant to provide water for Maseru and the surrounding towns.
This is in addition to ensuring WASCO fulfils its mandate to provide potable water and sanitation services to customers in urban and other designated areas.
“The appointment comes at a time when WASCO is working hard to comply with the regulatory requirements to improve customer service, quality of water and reliability of supply,” reads part of the statement.
“It also happens at an opportune time as it (WASCO) continues to intensify preparations to take over full control of the Metolong water supply to the benefiting towns of Maseru, Mazenod, Roma, Morija and Teyateyaneng; a development which is a huge challenge for the company as it has never managed infrastructure of this nature in terms of size and complexity of components as well as the vast distance the network covers.”
The statement said Mr Manamolela would draw from his experience in the “public sector, mining, financial services and recently, the education sector where he worked as the Deputy Rector at the Lesotho College of Education”.
According to DPE’S Education Researcher Lemohang Molibeli, WASCO needed to improve the quality of the potable water it provides to live up to its mandate.
“There is no justification for raising the cost of water if you consider the level of quality WASCO provides. In any case, Lesotho is endowed with abundant water sources and, therefore, it should not be expensive to collect
and supply the commodity,” Mr Molibeli said.
He said the new CEO would need to address the problem of burst sewer pipes around Maseru, which were not only a nuisance but a health risk.
“Our urban centres have become squalid due to the ubiquitous burst sewer pipes, and the response times are very long. These are some of the challenges the new CEO faces,” said Mr Molibeli.