Gender and Development

Gender-based violence is a prominent plague in the fabric of Lesotho. Large infrastructure development projects such as the Lesotho Highlands Water Project Phase II where operations are ongoing, are breeding grounds for more cases of GBV and other human violations within communities living in the project areas. This has increased women’s dependency and vulnerability to sexual exploitation for financial gain. The following story is one of the many cases of women who are left vulnerable and destitute in the name of development.

Mamothepane Thita (not her real name) narrates her predicament, who lives in one of the communities being affected by the Lesotho Highlands Water Project Phase II.

“I got married to a Mr. Khapane Thita (names withheld for victim’s protection) in 1992 under customary law and was blessed with three children, currently aged 30, 27, and 23 respectively. To sustain our living, my family ploughed 5 fields, from which we harvested five large bags of maize,
four bags of sorghum, and one bag of sugar beans. This yield was sufficient to sustain my family for a year or more. Things, however, took a turn, when the Lesotho Highlands Water Project Phase II began implementation in my community. All the five fields from which my family and I sustained a living were affected and as such lost to the project.

Our fears were however allayed when we were informed by the Lesotho Highlands Development Authority (LHWP’s implementing authority) that our household will be duly compensated. Indeed, we got the first tranche of compensation which was issued by cheque. The compensation is however insufficient to cover all basic needs. That is when I decided to go work at the Factories in Maputsoe. As I was working there, my husband called me informing me that LHDA had issued a lump sum of
about M263,500.00 as final compensation for our fields. I instructed him to use some of that money to buy food for our children and other essentials.

Instead, he went and brought his mistress into our home neglecting our children’s needs. I also immediately got a call from my oldest son saying I should come home immediately, there’s a problem. I left work and found my husband living with this woman in our home. I got rid of this
woman, who previously had an affair with my husband but dismissed for the sake of our family.

My mother-in-law then gave my husband a house for him to freely live with this woman. Because we live very close to my in-laws, I was exposed to seeing everything they did with this woman and so I decided to leave and go live with my mother. After some time, I decided to go back to work and this is when I was told that my husband had built a house for himself and this woman, with the same money which was supposed to be of benefit to our family. I left work and came home and discovered that my husband had taken all our furniture with him to the new house. I reported the matter to the Chief, which he called the LHDA to be a part of. We were both taken to open a joint account, but this was
all in vain as nothing was left of the money. My husband was instructed to release the furniture which was destroyed during his violent rage. I took the furniture as is and went to live with my children, who do not have any source of income, and my four grandchildren.

The Thita family home where she lives with her three children and four grandchildren.

As a mother, I felt it was my obligation to provide for my family, which meant seeking other means of income. I eventually met a man who worked at one of the construction companies with the LHWP and we got into a romantic relationship. I was finally able to provide for my family through what this man was offering me. However, the relationship did not prolong as it originated because of the financial benefits it provided. This man had been retrenched and was no longer able to provide for me.
I now must work in other people’s fields to earn an income. Just this month, I was paid with a large bag of maize meal. I have grown vegetables in a small garden so we can have something to eat with that.

Mamothepane (not real name) grows vegetables in her small garden to feed her children and grandchildren.

Rightfully, the LHDA ought to have assisted my husband and me with opening a joint account which gives both of us authority over the compensation money. But this came after my husband had consumed all the money. The LHDA must review its policy or put in place a safeguarding policy to avoid such issues.

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Resettlement and Relocation: The psychosocial traumas that come with large infrastructure development projects.

Dam constructions have wide-ranging effects such as displacement, resettlement, relocation and rehabilitation which involves physical transfer of communities to a new location. One of the rarely acknowledged impacts of projects such as the Lesotho Highlands Water Project is the psychological trauma experienced by communities.

Community members of the village of Ha Phohla, in the Polihali Dam area in Mokhotlong, were informed as far back as 2012 that they would be resettled as a result of construction of the Dam. In 2018 the community was informed by the project implementing authority, the Lesotho Highlands Development Authority (LHDA), that the village would not be resettled after all. Two years later the community was told that the village would, in fact, be partially resettled.

The community has since not received any development initiatives that other communities get because of the impending resettlement. They were discouraged from undertaking any developments for themselves such as building of houses. The community not only lives in anxiety of facing partial relocation but also experience the frustration of not having any developments been effected in the village.

Involuntary resettlement should be conceived as an opportunity for improving the livelihoods of the affected people and undertaken accordingly. All people affected by involuntary resettlement should be consulted and involved in resettlement planning to ensure that the mitigation of adverse effects as well as the benefits of resettlement are appropriate and sustainable. This should incorporate psychosocial support to communities, especially those facing involuntary resettlement.

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Groups hold training for human rights defenders

By The Reporter.

Seinoli Legal Centre in collaboration with the Southern Africa Human Rights Defenders Network this week conducted a three-day workshop for grass-roots human rights defenders (HRDs) in Mokhotlong.

Program Lawyer at Seinoli Legal Centre, Moeketsi Lepeli told theReporter on Wednesday this week that the purpose of the training was to equip human rights defenders with the knowledge and skills to be powerful advocates for their rights and for those communities they defend.

The workshop brought together HRDs from several villages including Masakong, Maluba-lube, Mapholaneng, Tlooa-Re-Buoe, and Ha-Ramonakalali. Police, community councilors and local chiefs also attended.

“The workshop sought to capacitate HRDs on human rights and laws protecting those rights, as well as how to engage with project implementers on community issues. We believe in empowering communities to fight for their rights,” he said.

According to Lepeli, the participants were working on a wide range of human rights issues and disputes affecting communities such as land compensation and displacement or relocation of households affected by Phase II of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP).

He indicated that they had realised that disputes between projects implementers – in this case the Lesotho Highlands Development Authority (LHDA) which is overseeing the water project – and the communities affected by the water project led to harassment and intimidation of human rights defenders in Lesotho.

“Such acts prompted us as rights groups to capacitate the HRDs so that they know legal routes to take when their rights are being intimidated. They need to understand legal ways of fighting or protecting their rights.  We believe that together, we can bring about positive change,” Lepeli said.

The rights groups had also realised that human rights defenders encounter a lot of challenges in defending the environment and the rights of local communities owing to the lack of laws that provide protection for defenders.

“Many of them are unaware of the laws designed to protect them from such injustices. Limited access to legal assistance further marginalises these communities. That’s why our goal is to enhance oversight and strengthen the role of HRDs in monitoring and responding to human rights violations,” Lepeli explained.

Human rights defender, Lebohang Lengoasa said the workshop had provided them with an opportunity to share their experiences with the police.

This was moreso because when they peacefully fight for their rights, especially through placards delivering messages, security agencies are the first group to harass them.

In a recent joint statement dated 31 May 2023, the two human rights groups strongly condemned any actions that hinder the work of HRDs and undermine their fundamental rights to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly, and association.

“These rights are enshrined in section 14 of the Constitution of Lesotho as well as under international human rights instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, to which Lesotho is a party,” the organisations noted.

They also expressed concern over the recent acts of harassment and intimidation against HRDs in Lesotho.

“We strongly condemn any actions that hinder the work of HRDs and undermine their fundamental rights to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly, and association. These rights are enshrined in section 14 of the Constitution of Lesotho as well as under international human rights instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, to which Lesotho is a party,” the statement added.

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Lesotho: Joint submission to the UN Human Rights Committee by ICJ and partners highlights numerous human rights concerns

n advance of the upcoming examination of Lesotho’s human rights record under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) in July, the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), The People’s Matrix Association (PM), Seinoli Legal Centre (SLC) and the Lesotho National Federation of Organizations of the Disabled (LNFOD) made a joint submission to the UN Human Rights Committee. The document draws the Committee’s attention to the human rights impact of inevitable failures by Lesotho to comply with its obligations under the ICCPR. It makes a number of recommendations to address those failures.

The submission details several concerns arising from Lesotho’s failure to comply with its obligations under the ICCPR, including:

  • the failure to enact a legal framework allowing for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, intersex, and queer (LGBTIQ+) persons to access legal documentation, or alter such legal documentation, to correctly reflect their self-identified gender/sex;
  • the denial of access to justice because of restricted access to legal aid services in Lesotho;
  • the denial of the rights to freedoms of assembly and expression of individuals and groups seeking to undertake lawful protests to secure their rights; and
  • the discrimination suffered by persons with disabilities in areas such as sexual autonomy, voting rights, access to justice, institutionalization, and failures to provide reasonable accommodations.

In addition, the ICJ, PM, SLC, and LNFOD are concerned, as set out in their joint submission, that, even though Lesotho’s legislation guarantees equal treatment of men and women, women are discriminated against when they try to access compensation from the Lesotho Highlands Water Project.

In particular, the organizations’ joint submission to the Committee describes human rights concerns with respect to the following topics, making recommendations on how such concerns could be addressed:

Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

  • discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation;
  • the criminalization of consensual same-sex sexual activity;
  • failure to ensure legal gender/ sex recognition;

Administration of Justice

  • limited access to State-provided legal aid and restrictions on NGOs in providing legal aid services;
  • denial of the right to peaceful assembly (in the context of protests);
  • discriminatory denial of compensation to women affected by the Lesotho Highlands Water Project.

The rights of persons with disabilities

  • failure to implement the Persons with Disability Equity Act and establish the Persons with Disability Advisory Council;
  • failure to provide reasonable accommodation for persons with disabilities to access courts and legal services;
  • laws rendering persons with disabilities incompetent to give evidence;
  • the indefinite institutionalization of persons determined to be “insane” or “mentally incapacitated” due to a denial of support to enable them to exercise their legal capacity;
  • failure to provide quality, inclusive education for children with disabilities in the general education system in community schools;
  • laws denying the legal capacity of persons with disabilities to consent to sexual intercourse;
  • the denial of persons with disabilities of their right to vote.

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ICJ, PM, SLC & LNFOD Joint Submission on Lesotho to the UN Human Rights Committee

Background

On 2 April 2019, at its 125th session, the Human Rights Committee issued a List of issues prior to the submission of the second periodic report of Lesotho, and requested in Part B, specific information on the implementation of articles 1 to 27 of the Covenant, including regarding previous recommendations of the Committee.

On 31 March 2020, Lesotho submitted to the Human Rights Committee its second periodic report under Article 40 of the Covenant pursuant to the optional reporting procedure. The report was published on 22 April 2020.

In view of the Committee’s review of Lesotho’s record under the ICCPR, the ICJ, The People’s Matrix Association, Seinoli Legal Centre, and the Lesotho National Federation of Organizations of the Disabled they have made a joint submission to the UN Human Rights Committee on Lesotho’s State Party report.

The UN Human Rights Committee will review Lesotho’s implementation of the list of issues during its 138th session, between 26 June and 28 July 2023.

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Calling all advocates for human rights!

We are thrilled to inform you about the ongoing Human Rights Defenders Training Workshop in Mokhotlong, Lesotho. 🌍

The displacement of rural communities and the violation of their land rights due to projects like the Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP) have prompted us to take action. We believe in empowering communities to fight for their rights! 💪✊

Did you know that many people are unaware of the laws designed to protect them from such injustices? Limited access to legal assistance further marginalizes these communities. Together, we can make a difference! 🌟

That’s why the Seinoli Legal Centre, in collaboration with the Southern Africa Human Rights Defenders Network, is hosting the first-ever local community HRDs training for those affected by LHWP Phase II. Our goal is to enhance oversight and strengthen the role of HRDs in monitoring and responding to human rights violations.

From June 12th to 14th, 2023, community members will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to be powerful advocates for their rights. Together, we can bring about positive change! 🤝

Join us in raising awareness and supporting these courageous individuals fighting for justice. Together, we can build a better future!

#HumanRightsDefenders #CommunityEmpowerment 

#LesothoHighlandsWaterProject #Advocacy #JusticeForAll

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Dear President Ramaphosa, as you visit Lesotho, listen to the cries of the displaced

By Reitumetse Nkoti Mabula on behalf of Seinoli Legal Centre, Survivors of Lesotho Dams, Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace, and Southern Africa Litigation Centre

The next phase of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project, marked by your visit on 23 May 2023, will lead to the renewed physical and economic displacement of thousands. The result is imminent food insecurity, impoverishment, and the breakdown of social networks and culture.

Dear President Cyril Ramaphosa,

Your visit to Polihali, Mokhotlong, to officially launch full-scale construction work of Phase II of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP II) on 23 May 2023, is highly welcomed.

Mr President, when this project was concluded under the 1986 LHWP Treaty, it was celebrated for the immense economic returns that would accrue to both Lesotho and South Africa, including sustainable development for local affected communities.

South Africa and Lesotho made an undertaking in the LHWP Treaty, “to take all reasonable measures to ensure that the implementation, operation and maintenance of the Project are compatible with the protection of the existing quality of the environment and, in particular, shall pay due regard to the maintenance of the welfare of persons and communities immediately affected by the project”.

The reality for communities, however, is in stark contrast to this undertaking.

As you know, Phase I of this project, which involved construction of the Katse Dam (under Phase IA) and Mohale Dam (under Phase IB) was inaugurated in 2004. More than 20,000 people were directly affected by this first phase of LHWP.

Thousands remain without compensation for the adverse impacts of the project on their lives and no efforts have been made to actively ensure that communities get direct economic benefits. People living in the vicinity of the Katse and Mohale dams endure consistent violation of their right to access clean water, since access to natural springs and other sources have been affected by the dams.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Report raises alarm over mines’ pollution of rivers critical to Lesotho Highlands Water Project

Mr President, residents are not allowed to access water from the dams to water their animals and irrigate their crops. Women within LHWP Phase II-affected communities are already marginalised as a result of cultural stereotypes which prevent them from owning land and benefiting from compensation for land rights which are affected by the LHWP. Lack of access to water further marginalises them and exacerbates their inability to break free from poverty.

Land and other natural resources which are the basis of the communities’ livelihoods have been expropriated by the project without payment and compensation.

While there is a responsibility by the Lesotho Highlands Development Authority to uphold the agreement, there is a significant perception among affected communities that impacts negatively on the image of South Africa. This fundamentally detracts from South Africa’s Africa Agenda and desire to be a partner to Africans.

Moreover, affected communities are likely to seek further economic opportunities in South Africa.

Apartheid origin

Mr President, you may recall that the LHWP Treaty was signed between the apartheid government in South Africa and a military regime in Lesotho. It was concluded during a period when both governments had no regard for human rights and the dictates of democracy and good governance.

In fact, no consultations were undertaken at all with the people of Lesotho in general and the affected communities in particular. Any dissent expressed against this project was thwarted with threats and violence. It is therefore not surprising, Mr President, that the treaty has failed to promote, respect and protect the human rights of people immediately affected by the project.

Thousands will be economically displaced as a result of acquisition and inundation of their agricultural land, grazing land, including natural resources.

When South Africa decided to implement Phase II following prolonged negotiations and signed the agreement to that effect in 2011, it was in the context of these residual issues which remain outstanding to date. This occasion of your visit to the Polihali Dam project site presents an opportunity to ensure that this phase does not repeat those mistakes, and guarantee that the communities who have given way for this dam are placed at the centre of this project.

Mr President, the further implementation of advanced infrastructure works to pave the way for construction of LHWP II, known as the Polihali Dam, has already had an adverse impact on the livelihoods of communities affected by this component of the project.

The Katse Dam is part of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project and supplies water to Gauteng. (Photo: Deaan Vivier / Beeld / Gallo Images)

Land and other natural resources which are the basis of the communities’ livelihoods have been expropriated by the project without payment and compensation.

The transition into the next component of LHWP II, marked by the occasion of your visit on 23 May 2023, will lead to renewed physical and economic displacement of families. The LHWP Phase II feasibility studies have estimated that about 16 villages will need to be relocated or resettled due to close proximity to the dam and/or significantly impeded access in the event of floods.

And again, thousands will be economically displaced as a result of acquisition and inundation of their agricultural land, grazing land, including natural resources. The result is imminent food insecurity, impoverishment and the breakdown of social networks and culture.

Climate change and the growing South African population and economy dictate that South Africa will increasingly rely on water from Lesotho. The role and importance of the LHWP and the anticipated phases beyond the Polihali Dam necessitate that great care be taken to secure ownership and buy-in of communities who have hitherto remained dissatisfied with this project.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Can anyone hear the socioeconomic and environmental alarm bells on Lesotho Highlands Water Project?

The challenge, Mr President, for this occasion and for the government of South Africa is to address South Africa’s interests in keeping this bilateral project more significant to both countries without losing sight of the longer-term sustainable development of local communities.

We therefore call upon you to:

  1. Review, as a matter of urgency, the LHWP Treaty to align it with the international human rights standards for better protection and promotion of the rights of affected communities;
  2. Devote your time in Lesotho to meet civil society organisations and the communities affected to hear their concerns regarding implementation of the LHWP Phase II first-hand;
  3. Engage the government of the Kingdom of Lesotho and the LHWP’s implementation authorities on the challenges facing communities affected by Phase I and Phase II of the LHWP, address human rights violations of communities, and ensure their right to development and restore their livelihoods;
  4. Assist the Kingdom of Lesotho and Lesotho Highlands Development Authority to overhaul the entire LHWP Legal and Compensation Framework, to ensure fair and adequate compensation for communities;
  5. Support the Kingdom of Lesotho and Lesotho Highlands Development Authority to formulate, as a matter of urgency, the Livelihoods Restoration Policy, which is in line with best international standards, to ensure that affected communities’ livelihoods are improved; and
  6. Undertake, as a matter of urgency, a forensic audit of all compensation funds intended for the affected people. DM

Reitumetse Nkoti Mabula is Executive Director of the Seinoli Legal Centre in Maseru, Lesotho.

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Human Rights Situation Report

Seinoli Legal Centre (SLC) with the Human Rights Institute of South Africa (HURISA) submitted a Human Rights situation report on the communities being affected by large Infrastructure projects in Lesotho at the 75th Ordinary Session of the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights held in Banjul, The Gambia. The report focused on the Human Rights violations emanating under LHWP Phase II in Polihali and the L-BWT scheme in Makhaleng.

The article can be accessed in this week’s Public Eye newspaper Vol. 26. No 19 on page 16 titled “Opinion of Lesotho’s dams, environmental impact and compensation.

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Open Letter to President Ramaphosa on the Occasion of SOD Turning of LHWP Phase II Main works on 23rd May 2023

The Presidency

Union Buildings

Government Avenue,

Pretoria

Private Bag X1000,

Pretoria,

0001

19th May 2023

Dear President Cyril Ramaphosa,

Your visit to Polihali, Mokhotlong, to officially launch full-scale construction work of Phase II of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP II) on the 23rd of May 2023, is highly welcomed.

Mr. President, when this project was concluded under the 1986 LHWP Treaty, it was celebrated for the immense economic returns that would accrue to both Lesotho and South Africa including sustainable development for local affected communities. South Africa and Lesotho made an undertaking, in the Treaty, “to take all reasonable measures to ensure that the implementation, operation, and maintenance of the Project are compatible with the protection of the existing quality of the environment and, in particular, shall pay due regard to the maintenance of the welfare of persons and communities immediately affected by the project.” The reality for communities, however, is in stark contrast to this undertaking.

As you know, Phase I of this project, which involved the construction of Katse Dam (under Phase IA) and Mohale Dam (under Phase IB) was inaugurated in 2004. Over 20 000 people were directly affected by this first phase of LHWP. Thousands remain without compensation for the adverse impacts of the project on their lives and no efforts were made to actively ensure that communities get direct economic benefits. Communities living in the vicinity of both the Katse and Mohale Dams endure consistent violations of their right to access to clean water, as access to natural springs and other water sources was impacted by the dams. Mr. President, communities are not allowed to access water from the dams to drink their animals or to irrigate their crops. Women within LHWP Phase II affected communities are already marginalized as a result of cultural stereotypes which prevent women from owning land and benefiting from compensation for land rights that get affected by LHWP. Lack of access to water further marginalizes them and exacerbates their inability to break free of poverty.

While there is a responsibility for the Lesotho Highlands Development Authority to uphold the agreement, there is a significant perception among communities affected that impacts the image of South Africa negatively. This fundamentally detracts from South Africa’s Africa Agenda and desire to be a partner to Africans. Moreover, affected communities are likely to seek further economic opportunities in South Africa.

Mr. President, you may recall that the LHWP Treaty was signed during the apartheid government in South Africa and a military regime in Lesotho. It was concluded during a period when both governments had no regard for human rights and the dictates of democracy and good governance. In fact, no consultations were undertaken at all with the people of Lesotho in general and the affected communities. Any dissent expressed against this project was thwarted with threats and violence. It is therefore not surprising Mr. President that the Treaty has failed to promote, respect, and protect the human rights of people immediately affected by the project.

When South Africa decided to implement Phase II following prolonged negotiations and signed the agreement to that effect in 2011, it was in the context of these residual issues which remain outstanding to date. This occasion of your visit to the Polihali Dam project site presents an opportunity to ensure that this phase does not repeat the same mistakes, and guarantee that the communities who have given way to this dam are placed at the center of this project. 

Mr. President, the further implementation of advanced infrastructure works to pave the way for the construction of LHWP II, known as the Polihali Dam has already had an adverse impact on the livelihoods of communities affected by this component of the project. Land and other natural resources which are the basis of the communities’ livelihoods have been expropriated by the project without payment and compensation. The transition into the next component of LHWP II, marked by the occasion of your visit on the 23rd of May 2023, will lead to the renewed physical and economic displacement of families. The LHWP Phase II feasibility studies have estimated that about 16 villages will require to be relocated or resettled due to close proximity to the dam and/or significantly impeded access in the event of floods. And again, thousands will be economically displaced as a result of the acquisition and inundation of their agricultural land, grazing land, including natural resources. The result is imminent food insecurity, impoverishment, and the breakdown of social networks and culture.

Climate change and the growing South African population and economy dictate that South Africa will increasingly rely on water from Lesotho. The role and importance of LHWP and the anticipated phases beyond the Polihali Dam, necessitate that great care be taken to secure ownership and buy-in of communities who have hitherto remained dissatisfied with this project. The challenge, Mr. President, for this occasion and for the government of South Africa is to address South Africa’s interests in keeping this bilateral project more significant to both countries without losing sight of the longer-term sustainable development of local communities.

We, therefore, call upon you to:

1) Review, as a matter of urgency, the LHWP Treaty to align it with the international human rights standards for better protection and promotion of the rights of affected communities.

2) Devote your time whilst in Lesotho to meet with Civil Society Organisations and the communities affected to hear their concerns regarding the implementation of LHWP Phase II first-hand.

3) Engage the government of the Kingdom of Lesotho and LHWP’s implementing authorities on the challenges facing communities affected by Phase I and Phase II of the LHWP, address human rights violations of communities, and ensure their right to development and restore their livelihoods.

4) Assist the Kingdom of Lesotho and Lesotho Highlands Development Authority to overhaul the entire LHWP Legal and Compensation Framework, to ensure fair and adequate compensation for communities.

5) Support the Kingdom of Lesotho and Lesotho Highlands Development Authority to formulate as a matter of urgency, Livelihoods Restoration Policy, which is in line with best international standards, to ensure that affected communities’ livelihoods are improved.

6) Undertake, as a matter of urgency, a forensic audit of all compensation funds intended for the affected people.

Respectfully,

Signed: 

1. Seinoli Legal Centre (SLC)

2. Survivors of Lesotho Dams (SOLD)

3. Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP)

4. Southern Africa Litigation Centre (SALC)

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Advertisement-Film Expert

Background

The Seinoli Legal Centre (SLC) leverages the Rule of Law as a tool for protecting, restoring, and enhancing the sustainable livelihoods of local communities. Our mission is to provide communities affected by large development projects with sustained, comprehensive access to the law to safeguard social, economic, and environmental rights. Our comprehensive and unique approach combines strategic litigation, advocacy, and capacity building of both our local client communities and the local legal system.

Project/ Job Summary

Seinoli is looking for a professional filmmaker or film production company to produce a documentary film, which will document the environmental, social, and economic impacts of large water infrastructure projects on the local communities in Lesotho. The intention is to draw attention to the human rights violations which marginalized communities endure as a sacrifice for the economic growth of their country, to influence policy, and to secure better development outcomes for the community.

The foundation of the documentary will be on the LHWP-affected communities in both Phase I and II and showcase the impacts in both phases and draw lessons that should inform the implementation process and development of policies for the anticipated Lesotho Botswana Water Transfer Scheme. The entire film production which includes filming, editing, voicing/narration, etc. should be done by the film expert, delivering a final ready-to-air product in broadcast standards and in HD technology format 16:9. The entire development and production process will be closely monitored by Seinoli and will provide a continuous review, comments, and thematic inputs support when needed.

Key Responsibilities/ Main duties

Seinoli has already produced three film pieces in the two project areas, where the LHWP phase II is currently being implemented, and in Makhaleng where the new L-BWT scheme will be implemented. Two more film pieces are expected to be shot and all five short films merged together in one 45min-1 hour documentary, with voiceovers and English subtitles. In order to achieve this, the selected individual or company is required to carry out the following:

• Visit the selected project sites and interact with the local communities/beneficiaries who have been impacted by the project.

• Submit a storyboard and script for the documentary.

• A detailed timeline and work plan should be submitted. A detailed budget and shooting schedule (pre-production, production, and post-production should be provided upon contract signing.

• Perform appropriate video filming and shoot interviews with the projects’ beneficiaries and stakeholders, and produce high-quality project still photographs.

• Incorporate all five film pieces into one final documentary film of about 45 min-1 hour. 

• Add relevant audio-visual material such as background music and scenic videos shot during production or which have been sourced from public domains but acknowledge sources.

• Deliver the final products through a cloud storage platform; final files will include completed videos in MP4 format and open files (raw project files) and photographs in JPEG format.

Duration

The duration of the entire project is expected to take 40 working days from the date of signing. This includes 10 days of the actual shooting in Mokhotlong and Katse respectively. The editing period will be one month, which involves editing of the two films and compiling all five films into one documentary of about 45min- 1 hour.

Key deliverables:

1 documentary of about 45min-1 hour with voice-overs, English subtitles, aerial shots, and still pictures.

Interested individuals or companies should submit a technical and financial proposal in relation to the terms of reference indicating their interest and providing the following information and documents

1. Detailed Company profile

2. More than 5 years of experience working in the film industry or a similar field. 

3. Submit a portfolio consisting of documented work experience in the area of film/reportage/documentary writing, producing, directing and editing, and photography.

4. References indicating collaboration and work with non-governmental organizations.

Budget

Provide a detailed breakdown of all estimated costs, including estimated days of shooting, production team, days of editing, travel costs, music, and total cost for the final product. Please note that no additional payments will be made outside of the total budget.

Expression of interest by individuals or companies should be submitted via email to info@seinoli.org.ls.dream.website by the 2nd of June 2023. Applications must be submitted in PDF.

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