Profiles: Lesotho

Last Updated: March 2015


The Directorate on Corruption and Economic Offence's (DCEO) core business is to fight corruption and economic offenses using a classical three-pronged approach: public education, prevention and investigation. The public education/awareness campaign is geared towards educating the public against corruption and thereby enlisting and fostering public support in the fight against corruption. The prevention aspect of its mandate entails examining the practices and procedures of public bodies with a view to strengthening their operational systems so as to reduce the opportunities for corruption. With regard to investigation, DCEO is responsible for investigating complaints or allegations of corruption and economic offences. However, thus far, it does not have prosecutorial powers.

Does your government have a single or primary anticorruption strategy?

Lesotho has adopted the three-pronged “attack” strategy against corruption: Prevention, Public Education and Investigation. The strategy is currently under review with technical assistance from the Commonwealth Secretariat. However, a National Anti-Corruption Strategy and Action Plan (NACSAP) 2014/15 – 2018/19 involving all sectors of society, has just been developed , and formally launched.

What are the main anticorruption laws of your country?

Constitution of Lesotho of 1993
Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act of 1981
Penal Code of 2010
Prevention of Corruption and Economic Offences Act of 1999
Prevention of Corruption and Economic Offences (Amendment) Act of 2006
Public Procurement Regulations of 2007
Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act 2008
Public Finance Management Act of 2011

Is there one agency in charge of coordinating AC efforts across agencies?

DCEO was established as the main AC agency leading all other sectors

Functions Research,Prevention,Investigation,Prosecution,Policy
Permanent Staff 62
Number of prosecutors(if applicable) 2
Number of investigators (if Applicable) 11

Number of cases handled annually

Budget Autonomy No
Annual Budget of the Agency M18,672,000.00
Are employees protected by law from recrimination or other negative consequences when reporting corruption (i.e. whistle-blowing)? Yes
Does your country have freedom of information legislation? No
Does your country have conflict of interest legislation? Yes
Does your country have a financial disclosure system to help prevent conflicts of interest? Yes
Who appoints the head of your agency? The Prime Minister
Who has the authority to remove the head of the ACA? The Prime Minister in accordance with the law. DG has security of tenure.
Is there any term limit for the head of the ACA? Yes , five-year term
Does your agency measure performance? Yes
Number of investigations launched
Other, please specify
Number of public education activities undertaken
Number of reports alleging acts of corruption lodged with DCEO by members of the public.
Number of recommendations implemented from systems analysis (corruption audit)
Number of Cases prosecuted
Full access to Government Yes