The Impact of Old Age Pension on Households and Social Relationships in Lesotho

  • PT Tanga National University of Lesotho


The findings of this paper are drawn from an old age pension study conducted in Maama Constituency, Lesotho and it examines the extent to which old age pension impacts on pensioners’ households and social relationships. Survey data was supplemented by data from in-depth interviews with key informants. The consequences of high unemployment and the high HIV/AIDS rate have prompted the aged to be caregivers in Lesotho because of their old age pension. The findings show that pension money has strengthened the decision-making process in most households in favour of the aged. An overwhelming number of pensioners have total control of their pension, especially the men. Despite the rigidity of these old people with their pension pay package, more than a quarter of the pensioners take care of orphans. In addition, about two-fifth of them were supporting the education and training of some household members through the provision of uniforms, stationery and shoes. The study also reveals that the African culture of respect for the elderly is still much alive in Lesotho. Most of the pensioners reported excellent relationship with and respect from members of their households, more especially their grandchildren. Despite the small amount of pension, it has given a new dimension to the lives of the pensioners and also strengthened and reinforced the spirit of the African brotherhood in Lesotho.

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eISSN: 1024-4190