A Massive Intervention – Mohale Dam


Mohale Dam - with the earlier Katse part I of the Lesotho Highlands Water Scheme.

Villagers on the lower slopes had to be moved to higher ground.

A magnificent panorama and a major impact on the surrounding landscape of great beauty. Tremors have been recorded as the earth adjusted to its new weight.

Mohale Dam (completed in 2002) together with the earlier constructed Katse Dam (completed in 1989) now form part of phase I A and B of the envisaged three phases of the Lesotho Highlands Water Scheme which was conceived mainly to supply the South African industrial centres on the Witwatersrand and the Free State with water, generate income for the Lesotho government and hydro-electric power for the people of Lesotho.
The above pictures show a landscape of great beauty inhabited by villagers who support themselves by subsistence farming and migrant labour to the South African mining industry.
Constructing the dams and huge pipelines necessitated the building of roads whereby infrastructure for villages in the many remote parts of the mountain kingdom was improved. Not much else appears to have changed though. A great tourist potential exists but would require a special effort by local authorities to make it work.

Horses are still a valuable means of transport in the mountains.

Roads cutting through the land, power lines overhead, rondavels replaced by rectangular structures - all the ubiquitous signs of "progress".

On our way to Roma.

We bought bunches of lovely "moroho" (a coarser type of Swiss chard) at the entrance to the University for our evening meal at Morija.

The drive from Morija to Mohale Dam and back via Roma was most enjoyable and our friends from Montpellier felt richly rewarded – and so were we.

With love – à bientôt –
Colleen & Walter
Betty’s Bay, 21 March 2012

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