Lesotho Water Project Corruption

Back to Resources
First published on
This resource has been tagged as a Page
Mural in Uganda

Mural in Uganda

Corruption is a widespread problem in the world of large dams. Massive corruption was discovered on the LHWP in 1999, when more than 12 multinational firms and consortiums were found to have bribed the CEO of the project.

After the CEO himself was found guilty, three major European firms were put in the dock; thus far, two have been found guilty and charged, and one has been debarred at the World Bank.

  • Testimony on LHWP Given to Senate Foreign Relations Committee, in 2006. International Financial Institutions: A Call for Change from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in 2010.
  • [node:1972 link]
    International Rivers and Environmental Defense welcome the World Bank’s decision to debar Lahmeyer International from receiving Bank contracts for up to seven years because of the company’s corrupt role in the Lesotho Highlands Water Project. Please read the press release. November 7, 2006.
  • [node:3866 link]
  • The World Bank has finally debarred one of the multinational companies convicted of corruption on the Lesotho Highlands Water Project. Acres International will not be eligible for Bank contracts for three years. July 19, 2004.
  • World Bank Press Release on Acres’ Debarment
    “World Bank Sanctions Acres International Limited”. July 23, 2004.
  • [node:1973 link]
    International Rivers calls on the World Bank and other financial institutions to take a stronger stand against corruption. June 18, 2003.
  • [node:1975 link]
    The Lesotho High Court has convicted Acres International, a Canadian engineering consulting firm, of paying bribes to win contracts on a multi–billion dollar dam project. The company may face disbarment by World Bank. September 20, 2002.
  • [node:3033 link]
    A tale of Swiss bank accounts and battered reputations unfolds in a courtroom in faraway Lesotho, Toronto Star, September 16, 2002.
  • [node:3034 link]
    Financial Times, June 5, 2000.
  • [node:4060 link]
    by Nick Hildyard of the UK NGO The Corner House. The paper was presented at a meeting on corruption in southern Africa, organized by Transparency International, in London. July 25, 2000.
  • [node:3863 link]
    World Rivers Review, December 1999, back page.
  • [node:3247 link]
    November 30, 1999.
  • [node:3864 link]
    November 26, 1999.
  • [node:3248 link]
    International Rivers letter to the World Bank discussing Lesotho Highlands Water Project, Impregilo involvement in crruption court case and the bank’s responsibility, November 19, 1999.
  • [node:3249 link]
    A unique coalition of trade unions, environmentalists and development bodies demand action by the World Bank against companies which are implicated in a bribery scandal on the Lesotho Highlands Water Project, November 27, 1999.
  • [node:1970 link]
    World Rivers Review, October 1999, front page.
  • [node:7408 link]
    Letters revealing very different perspectives on the LHWP corruption case. October 22, 1999.
  • [node:3027 link]
    South African researcher has questions about the recent corruption involving major dam–building companies. August 27, 1999.
  • [node:3865 link]
    August 4, 1999. [node:1404 link] that originally appeared on August 13, 1999.