Lesotho is a constitutional monarchy with two spheres of government: central and local. The constitution of Lesotho mandates parliament to establish local government and the main governing legislation is the Local Government Act 1997 and Local Government Elections Act 1998. The Minister of Local Government and Chieftainship is tasked with providing policy direction and support for local authorities. Local government is predominantly two-tier, but the capital Maseru has its own unique single-tier authority, the city council. Although local authorities are empowered to raise local revenue, the vast majority of their annual income continues to come through central government transfers. Amongst an extensive list of functions, local authorities are responsible for the control of natural resources and environmental protection, public health and water supply, education, agricultural services and the promotion of economic development.
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