FRANCISTOWN: Tricksters who rob people of their hard earned cash became the bane of two charity cyclists who rode in a bid to build a house for a disadvantaged resident of Borolong.
The local cyclists, Gunnar Sejlitz, 70, and Darius Mlambo, 30, discovered this during their close to 500 kilometres journey on bicycles from Gaborone to Borolong, near Francistown.
The cycling trip commenced on July 2, 2016 and the duo were joined by Lesedi Setlhare, 35, Kagiso Mpipi, 38, and Basetsana Keeme, 28 for the charity trip.
In an interview with Mlambo on their arrival in Francistown on Friday, he complained that they did not get enough donations along the way because members of the public thought they were thieves out to swindle them.
“People were not willing to donate, they asked us numerous questions like who we were and what we intend to do with the funds. I plead with Batswana who are in the habit of swindling people out of their hard earned property to refrain from doing so because people like us who are doing a noble cause will be mistaken for thieves,” Mlambo said. He also expressed concern about some people especially the youth who discredited the idea using various social media platforms adding that it might have contributed to low donations along the way. “I plead with people who abuse social media to refrain from doing so and learn
The cyclists travelled through villages along A1 pleading for donations. Mlambo said Royal Engineering and Mam Electrical donated a total of P2,000. “The Muslim Youth Movement donated P5,000, Badziili Lebala and Monica Alfred donated P1,000 and P100 respectively. Some companies donated door frames, window frames, doors, bed and wardrobe and cement,” said Mlambo. “We plead with the public to donate roofing materials because we don’t have it. We are also happy for the goat that we were given by the Bangwato royal family. We are also appealing for help from President Khama,” he said.
Our main sponsor, Manila Investments has promised to provide labour for the construction of the house,” said Mlambo. He applauded FurnMart for providing them with breakfast, lunch and supper throughout the entire trip.
Mlambo said their aim is to give the needy person dignity through donating a house because currently she has no place to stay.
He said that their idea is inspired by one of the country’s Vision 2016 pillars of being ‘A just, compassionate and caring nation’ as well as the President’s call to give to the needy.