The need to support efforts towards reduction of maternal mortality in Lesotho topped the agenda when UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund Representative to Lesotho Ms Nuzhat Ehsan presented credentials to the Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr ‘Mamphono Khaketla on Wednesday (22/03/2017).
The Representative expressed grave concern about the high maternal mortality rate in Lesotho (1024 per 100 000 live births) and pledged UNFPA’s commitment to work in partnership with other United Nations agencies to make a dent on maternal deaths.
She also emphasized need for enhanced partnership and coordination by UN agencies on areas of support such as the Sustainable Development Goals and further pledged to support formulation of the National Strategic Development Plan – 2 (NSDP-2).
The UNFPA Representative also highlighted the Minister on some areas of focus for UNFPA such as teenage pregnancy and HIV infection noting with concern that, “The longevity of Basotho people because of HIV is heartbreaking.”
In the same vein, the Minister also stressed the need for stronger coordination from the UN to avoid duplication. She noted with appreciation that UNFPA’s programmes are more focused on the grassroots and thus giving hope for greater impact to ordinary Basotho people.