December Rains Reignite Hope For Phane Collectors

Phane haversters are still hopeful of a bumper season
Phane haversters are still hopeful of a bumper season

BOBONONG- Mophane worm collectors in Bobirwa had a delayed season thanks to a prolonged dry spell in their region. However they looked to the skies over the festive season and are now hopeful and optimistic that there is still light at the end of the tunnel.

It is common for them to relocate to their bush camps, beginning of December, for at least a month and a half to collect phane and sell it for survival. The recent rains, which fell between Christmas and New Year raised their hopes to continue the hustle. Some residents of Bobonong were seen with loads of tins, plastics and blankets leaving their comfortable homes to camping sites mostly between Molalatau and Mathathane. Though the place is considered dangerous after an elephant was spotted a few years ago, they are defiant.

Phane is mostly found in the central part of Botswana and it is highly vendible across the country and Babirwa, just like any other tribe in the central, maximise the festive holidays to sell to the visitors and home comers. Oratile Mokoba is a regular at a camp near Semolale and this time around she has relocated with her three school going children to collect phane. After the rains fell, just before New Year, Mokoba looked no further and proceeded to the camp. She had in mind the P15,000 she made from sale of the same worm between Christmas and New Year a year before. “This year, it is going to be tough but we are hopeful to get something to buy our kids school uniform in January. There is more to get from phane and we are grateful for the natural resource,” she said.

Editor's Comment
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