Increased incidence of snakes in homes Blamed on environment mismanagement


. . . as Lesotho awaits dialogue on natural resources governance


MASERU – There are increasing incidents of snakes finding their way into people’s households due to climate change and an unhealthy environment. This was said by the Ministry of Forestry and Environment Principal Secretary (PS) ‘Maphakamile Xingwana at a press conference on Monday this week in preparation for the Lesotho National Dialogue on Natural Resources Governance.She added that when the environment is not kept properly this can lead to increased incidence of wildlife being found in homesteads. She said if the environment is well kept then the snakes will crawl back to their places because the environment would not be conducive for wildlife.

She said the theme is engaging everyone to protect and keep the environment and natural resources healthy. It is believed that snakes are bound to seek cooler places such as homes and places under trees due to hot weather conditions. According to the African Snakebite Institute, Lesotho has around 25 different types of snakes. Three species are highly venomous, while three others can inflict a rather painful bite. Six species are considered venomous while 13 species are harmless.   During the same press conference, the Minister of Forestry and Environment Letsema Adontši said the Kingdom of Lesotho faces unique challenges and opportunities when it comes to its natural resource capital. He said the country’s geography and climate conditions leave especially susceptible environmental issues such as land cover loss, soil erosion, biodiversity loss, desertification, water scarcity and vulnerability to climate shocks.

“Lesotho is the water tower of Southern Africa. The Kingdom of Lesotho benefits from surplus renewable water resources and other vulnerable resources such as arable land and unique ecosystems that provide vulnerable services to the population and the economy. These resources hold immense potential for fostering inclusive economic growth, reducing poverty, improving food insecurity in a country where agriculture remains the main source of livelihood for communities and where poverty is defined by its rural population.

“The Ministry is concerned over these climate change impacts as well as how Basotho seem to be neglecting the environment and natural resources. We see the bad use of pastures and wetlands because of which the country now loses its natural waters therefore the country would eventually lose funds such as the ones it is getting from cross border payments for water royalties,” he said.

The minister also said the country is yet to host the Lesotho National Dialogue on Natural Resources governance scheduled for April 14 to 15. This is where stakeholders will assist each other to come up with plans to safeguard natural resources as well as the environment and to come up with laws and policies.

Lerotholi Nkuebe, Director Soil and Conservation said that during the dialogue they will be tackling four thematic areas which include policies and laws governing natural resources which include soil, water and pastures but excludes the mined minerals.

He said the second area will be on plans to protect the environment as well as natural resources, where women, herd men would be incorporated in the planning and how those resources are used on the environment. He said the intention is to bring back the old Lesotho as the nation celebrates 200 years.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *