government of Lesotho to formulate evidence-based migrant sensitive policies and development plans. Speaking at the launch, IOM Lesotho Head of Office Eriko Nishimura said the project is
more significant in the era of Covid-19 when evidence-based decision making is encouraged, given the dynamic environment of people movement. Nishimura said this launch
will be a key milestone of the government of Lesotho, through which it can continue enhancing and strengthening migration data management in the country.
IOM Lesotho Programme Support Officer ‘Masoai Dennis said a migration profile is a country-owned tool prepared in consultation with a broad range of stakeholders to
enhance policy coherence, evidence-based policy making and the mainstreaming of migration into development plans. Dennis continued that the migration profile
provides a framework for analysis of the impact of migration on development. “It contributes to promoting effective migration management and also to review
existing migration policies and governance frameworks,” she said. Ministry of Development Planning Deputy Principal Secretary (DPS) Teboho ‘Mokela said
the ministry through an unwavering support and longstanding partnership with IOM and other ministries, departments and agencies implemented the second phase
of migration project which is an improvement to the first migration profile. The first phase focused on a situation analysis of the present situation in Lesotho,
whereby IOM was able to set up a Migration Data Working Group (MDWG) to strengthen Bureau of Statistics (BOS) coordination role, data literacy training
for the National Consultative Committee on migration and development. It also developed migration data collection tools and identification of migration
indicators as well as the roadmap for Phase II project. “I am glad to say that we have successfully completed development of the first migration profile through full support of the IOM development fund,” she said
adding that migration is one of the three population dynamics currently attracting recognition due to the evident importance it carries in the socio-demographic and economic sphere.
‘Mokela further said data on migration will contribute towards the improvement of
quality of lives of the people of Lesotho through provision of current and reliable data for development planning, policy formulation, monitoring and evaluation of national programmes and international developmental frameworks
such as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and agenda 2063. She noted that the BOS and other ministries, departments and agencies have to work hand
in hand to produce usable and reliable migration data, however, despite the efforts made by some development partners in trying to improve production of
these data, there still exist some data gaps that need to be worked on. The Migration Profile is aimed at guiding Southern African Development Community
(SADC) Member States and partners to have access to disaggregated, timely, comparable, and reliable migration data, consolidated from sources including
official government data, partners data, and operational data, a move towards Agenda 2030. Also to support Member States and partners, including UN-system, academia, and civil society organizations
to, amongst others, harness evidence for better informed migration-related policy interventions, development planning, operations, and communication strategies.