Maseru 1 July 2015 - A workshop was recently held in Maseru to gather inputs on the city and national urban profiles in Lesotho, advance a collective analysis of the information contained in the profiles and validate the Urban Profiles as operational tools for urban policy debate and slum upgrading action planning.

Titled Maseru Profiles Validation Workshop, the meeting was attended by the Mayor of Maseru, Mr. Motloheloa Mabitso, and various government representatives from the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Ministry of Development and Training, Ministry of Social Welfare and Development, Ministry of Public Works and Transport, the gender representative from the Ministry of Youth and Sports, councillors, and various community ward representatives.

Representatives from the private sector and a variety of local NGOs were also present. The urban profiles identified the urban challenges and needs faced by urban residents, as well as solutions to tackle the challenges which will inform government action and policies in the future. The participants who were happy to see the profiles, committed to assist with their implementation.

However they voiced their concern that the profiles did not give an adequate historical background of the cities due to their brief size. Councillors at the workshop expressed their enthusiasm towards the profiles and voiced their interest and commitment to helping to identify areas of concern in the councils.

The community ward representatives stated the importance of researching the main causes of crime in Maseru city as crime had become one of the major challenges facing the city and needed to be dealt with. Mr. Mabitso, in his closing remarks, stated the importance of involving more people in the preparation of the urban profiles. “This is the beginning of a long road in the development of Maseru city,” he observed.