Key data for Lesotho

NCI38th HRCI20th HANCI34th
HANCI Africa compares 45 countries for their performance on 22 indicators of political commitment to reduce hunger and undernutrition. All the countries compared in the index have high rates of hunger and undernutrition. The comparative approach of the index means that country scores are calculated in relation to the political commitment of the other countries in the index.
Existing rates of: Stunting: 33.20% Wasting: 2.80% Proportion of population underweight: 10.30% Source: Gov. of Lesotho (DHS, 2014)

Strong Performance

  • Lesotho has devised a National Nutrition Policy/Strategy.
  • Lesotho has introduced a multisectoral and multistakeholder policy coordination mechanism to support delivery of the National Nutrition Policy/Strategy.
  • Policymakers in Lesotho benefit from regular nutrition surveys that are statistically representative at national level. The last survey was published in 2014.
  • The Government of Lesotho promotes complementary feeding practices.
  • In Lesotho 95.2% of women aged 15-49 were visited at least once during pregnancy by skilled health personnel in 2014.

Areas for improvement

  • Spending on agriculture (1.75% of public spending in 2014), does not meet government commitments set out in the African Union’s Maputo Declaration (10% of public spending).
  • Lesotho’s spending in its health sector (13.1% of public spending in 2014) is close to, yet not fully meeting government commitments set out in the African Union's Abuja Declaration (15% of public spending).
  • In Lesotho, the law gives women and men equal economic rights and equal legal access to agricultural land. However, these laws are not effectively enforced and discriminatory practices against women continue, increasing their vulnerability to hunger and undernutrition.
  • Lesotho does not have a separate budget line for nutrition; this prevents transparency and accountability for spending.
  • Even though Lesotho has developed a National Nutrition Policy/Strategy and a multisectoral and multistakeholder policy coordination mechanism, clear time-bound nutrition targets are still lacking.
  • The Government of Lesotho has not enshrined the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes into domestic law.
  • The Government of Lesotho has only achieved two high doses of vitamin A supplementation for 67% of children in 2014.
  • Weak access to improved sanitation facilities (30.3% in 2015) obstructs better hunger and nutrition outcomes.
  • In Lesotho, constitutional protection of the right to social security is weak.
  • Social safety nets in Lesotho are basic and only cover few risks for a limited number of beneficiaries.

Hunger Reduction Commitment Index (HRCI)

Public Spending Score Year HRCI rank of 45
Public spending on agriculture as share of total public spending
?
1.75%201439th
Public spending on health as share of total public spending
?
13.1%20149th
Policies Score Year HRCI rank of 45
Access to land (security of tenure)
?
Moderate201416th
Access to agricultural research and extension services
?
Moderate201321st
Civil registration system — coverage of live births
?
45.1%200935th
Functioning of social protection systems
?
Weak201620th
Laws Score Year HRCI rank of 45
Level of constitutional protection of the right to food
?
Moderate20118th
Equality of women’s access to agricultural land
?
In Law, not in Practice20141st
Equality of women’s economic rights
?
In Law, not in Practice20111st
Constitutional right to social security
?
No201428th

Nutrition Commitment Index (NCI)

Public Spending Score Year NCI rank of 45
Separate budget for nutrition
?
Sectoral only201529th
Policies Score Year NCI rank of 45
Vitamin A supplementation coverage for children
?
67.0%201428th
Government promotes complementary feeding
?
Yes20121st
Population with access to an improved water source
?
81.8%201517th
Population with access to improved sanitation
?
30.3%201523rd
Health care visits for pregnant women
?
95.2%201415th
Nutrition features in national development policy
?
Moderate2013–201720th
National Nutrition Policy/Strategy
?
Yes20141st
Multisector and multistakeholder policy coordination
?
Yes20151st
Time bound nutrition targets
?
No201232nd
National nutrition survey in last 3 years
?
Yes20141st
Laws Score Year NCI rank of 45
Enshrine ICBMS in domestic law
?
Not Enshrined in Law201633rd