The Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security (MAFS) in Lesotho held a one-day Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) Second Malabo Declaration Biennial Review (BR) Report Validation Workshop for all stakeholders in the agricultural sector. CAADP is Africa's Policy Framework for Agriculture and Agriculture-led development. It is aimed at reducing poverty and increasing food security in the continent through at least 10% public budget allocation to the sector in order to achieve at least 6% agriculture annual growth rate.
The Principal Secretary (PS) of MAFS, Mr. Malefetsane Nchaka officially opened the Workshop and thanked the participants for their attendance. He encouraged them to own the CAADP process as a sector and should not only be the responsibility of MAFS as the leading Ministry. He also acknowledged the presence of Regional Strategic Analysis and Knowledge Support System (ReSAKSS) at the validation workshop The PS mentioned that the first BR report was presented in January 2018 at the AU Ordinary Session, and Lesotho’s score was 3.7 out of 10 which did not reflect well on the country. The PS further encouraged the sector to do more in whatever may be required by asking the participants to provide with data as required so that when this current BR report is presented, Lesotho should have a better score than the 2018 score.
The Lesotho CAADP Focal Person, Mr. Khesa presented the report on the results of the first Biennial Review where among the seven commitments, Lesotho scored an overall of only 3.7/10. Based on this score, the following were the recommendations that the country needs to consider in order to achieve a far better score in the next biennial review reporting. The recommendations were:
• Lesotho should increase public agriculture expenditure as share of total public expenditure in line with the Malabo Declaration commitments, and stem the decline in the area of irrigated land.
• The country should do more to integrate the youth and women in agricultural value chains.
• The country should strengthen agriculture data collection and management systems (monitoring and evaluation) to ensure that missing under and unreported indicators are reported in the next round of the Biennial Review. Data was not available on the following areas:
I. Post-Harvest Loss;
II. Farm Pastoral and Fisher Households that are resilient to climate change and weather related risks; and
III. Participation of women in agriculture with access to finance.
The next Biennial workshop will be held in 2021.