Mmegi Online :: All land departments should to be under one ministry - Mooketsi
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Friday 21 September 2018, 15:09 pm.
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All land departments should to be under one ministry - Mooketsi

The Ministry of Lands Management, Water and Sanitation has to absorb all land related departments into the ministry to make it fully fledged and smoothly running, says Real Estate Advisory Council Chairperson, Montshwari Mooketsi.
By Nnasaretha Kgamanyane Thu 30 Aug 2018, 10:00 am (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: All land departments should to be under one ministry - Mooketsi








Speaking at the on going first Botswana Land Issue Summit held in Gaborone today, Mooketsi argued that there was need to address issues of structure within the ministry. He said even though the ministry deals with policies and other land related issues, there was always confusion amongst the public and the business community when seeking help associated with land.

“There have always been a confusion between the ministry and other departments that deals with planning and others. How can the Land planning unit be under the Ministry of Local Government that does not deal with land issues? This is one of the contributing factors that makes it hard for the Ministry to know the value of land in the country,” he explained.

Mooketsi added that some of the land challenges the country was facing in the 21st century included carelessness in land management where some villages like Mogoditshane had been turned into townships due to shortage of land, lack of data that review development of the land which makes it hard to attract investors in the country and therefore pushing them to invest in neighbouring countries where they are provided with fully serviced land and data review of the land per districts.

He added that the other challenge was that people who do not have knowledge of what they were doing managed the land. He said in most instances, making decisions became a problem to the land board panels as they tend to make wrong decisions based

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on the poor advice unskilled personnel gave them. Mooketsi suggested that instead of increasing land tribunals, the government should at least train land board members who are the decision makers in how the land should be used including its development, planning and allocation.

He however pointed out that there were opportunities for improvement in the current systems of planning and land management. These includes coordinating and sharing planning process among the central government, local authority, academics, tribal authorities and land boards together with public education for decisions makers on the importance of increased diversity in urban areas to avoid continuous expansion which is not sustainable amongst others. 

For her part, the director in the Department of Lands Segomotso Maroba pointed out that the ministry was facing challenges such as equity in access to land and land administration related services, inadequate land administration structures, competing interests and land uses, processes and procedures together with difficulty in monitoring and tracking of tribal land property transactions, resulting in possible loss of tax revenue, money laundering, illicit land dealings, exponential increase in demand for land distorted property market.

“We have ongoing initiatives made to address the challenges and towards more democratic and participatory decision making to attain transparency. Those includes review of structures, statues, policies, processes and procedures; documentation and standardisation of processes and procedures, development of land information system; decentralization of services; capacitation of institutions with resources and management skills and improvement of quality of service,” she said.

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