An aspiring entrepreneur of Mosu village, Tshepo Gaolefufa, is crying foul over the rejection of a hotel and campsite plot for prospects to set up a business.
The frustrated Gaolefufa, who claims to have been allocated a hotel and campsite plot back on December 6, 2016, at Mosu village by Letlhakane Sub-Land Board, feels there is sabotage against his entrepreneurial plans.
Narrating his plight to The Monitor, Gaolefufa said back in December 2016 after applying for a hotel and campsite plot he received a letter from Letlhakane Sub-Land Board inviting him for an interview by the Board.
“Then, I attended the board meeting in the presence of Mosu land overseer and I was told my application was successful hence I should erect beacons on the corners of the plot. I was excited that I was a step forward into realising my dream of becoming a young entrepreneur.
Back then I was 34-years-old and energetic to take my business dream to greater heights,” he revealed. He said when he was still trying to source funds for his business he was disappointed to receive a letter from the Letlhakane Sub-Land Board informing him of a sustainable land management study to be carried out in the Makgadikgadi area that will affect his plot hence should halt any development.
“While waiting for the progress of the study I kept on visiting (and) enquiring about the progress of the study. I waited with frustration because there was no communication, I kept on visiting them up until May 3, 2019, when I received a letter being an update that the study was still ongoing. Then, they told me that there might be possibilities of being allocated a plot elsewhere.
Still waiting with hope, I had a shock of my life after I received a letter dated March 1, 2021, being informed that my application has been rejected. How can you reject an application that you have already allocated?” asked the dejected Gaolefufa.
He further stated that they could have at least allocated him a plot elsewhere if they happened to have had second thoughts concerning the initial plot. Gaolefufa said he kept on following them up through the phone until November 2019 when the officer who assisted him informed him that he was no longer in
The fuming Gaolefufa said despite having been told that he was no longer visible, he kept on following the matter up until he asked to meet the permanent secretary (PS) under the Ministry of Land Management, Water and Sanitation Services, Bonolo Khumotaka who tried to intervene after discovering that my successful application was reversed.
He said on December 21, 2020, he received a letter from the PS informing him that the findings of the sustainable land management study that were carried out from 2014 to 2017 by the Land Board in collaboration with the Botswana Tourism Organisation resulted in his application being deferred. “I am hurt and frustrated because they played delaying tactics for years. I was going to be the first young entrepreneur to own a hotel and campsite in Mosu.
I suspect that there is someone somewhere who has sabotaged my idea. A majority of the youth are unemployed, struggling despite having submitted brilliant business ideas to different departments,” the frustrated Gaolefufa said. Contrary to the letter that the Letlhakane Sub-Land Board had written to Gaolefufa inviting him for an interview back on November 20, 2016, in which they stated that all those whose applications had been considered should immediately erect beacons for their plot identification, in her letter the PS said the erection of beacons does not mean allocation.
Rather, she said, it simply helps in identifying and depicting the extent of the proposed land and consequently the production of the sketch plan, which is used by the Board to make an informed decision.
In a letter The Monitor is in possession of dated March 1, 2021, the Letlhakane Sub-Land Board further informed Gaolefufa that the Board had resolved to reject his application as the study’s findings recommended that all allocations within Mosu and surrounding villages will be made following the identification, production of base maps, demarcation and advertising for all interested parties to apply. “Please note that the application was previously deferred for completion of a study, when there is an ongoing study all allocations in the area are suspended,” further reads the letter.