Lesotho Highlands Water Project: Mokonyane dismisses corruption allegations

Mokonyane has allegedly been pushing for new terms of reference for the R26-billion project.

FILE: Nomvula Mokonyane.Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane says allegations of corruption and political interference in the Lesotho Highlands Water Project, remain just that -but says the only time she interfered was to ensure local companies also benefit from the project.

Mokonyane has allegedly been pushing for new terms of reference for the R26-billion project-raising concerns about political interference and a further delay in a scheme vital to Gauteng's water security.

The project, which was scheduled for completion in 2018, has been hit by several delays and is now expected to be completed in 2025 - according to the water affairs department.

Mokonyane said allegations of corruption in the project are baseless.

"It was allegations, and they remain allegations. I am saying that the delays had to do with the issues that I have raised; including the fact that we can't have Americans and multinationals as beneficiaries and all that Lesotho and South Africa can benefit on is have water out of the tap."