Ntlo ya Dikgosi yesterday resolved to request Parliament to defer the proposed Tribal Land Bill of 2017 for further consultation with the general public.
The Minister of Land Management, Water and Sanitation Services, Prince Maele presented the Tribal Land Bill of 2017 to Ntlo Ya Dikgosi during the just ended meeting. Members of Parliament will discuss the Bill, which seeks to improve the administration of the tribal land in the ongoing session of Parliament.
Kgosi Moeti Monyamane of Kgalagadi North stated that it is very important for Batswana to be consulted about the Bill before it is passed into law. He said while Parliament, as the supreme law maker has referred the Bill to Dikgosi for further advice, there has to be intensive consultation with the people who will be affected by the new legislation. “Land issues are very sensitive and important.
There is need for further consultation with the people before the Bill is discussed in Parliament. Parliament has referred the Bill to us to make recommendations, however we can overlook some things as a House,” said Monyamane. Kgosi Nametso Kopelo of Molepolole Region supported the resolution for the Bill to be deferred. He said enacting laws hurriedly should not be a priority because they could in turn haunt the people.
“I applaud the resolution and the person who came up with it. We should not do things in a hurry. Batswana should be consulted so that if things go wrong along the way, they know that they agreed to it,” said Kopelo.For Kgosi Galeakanye Modise of Tswapong Region, Botswana enjoys peace because of the firm belief in consultation.
Kgosi Kgomotso Boiditswe of Serowe Region said Batswana should be informed about what the Bill entails. He stated that the issue of land is a big one, which should be dealt with diligently. He further said consultation is part of Setswana culture as seen in other occasions such as marriages.
When commenting on Dikgosi’s resolution, the Assistant Minister of Land Management, Water and Sanitation Services Itumeleng Moipisi said he appreciated their recommendation. He said Parliament will look into the Bill with consideration to the resolution of Ntlo ya Dikgosi.
The Tribal Land Bill provides for, among other things, the grant of customary land rights and introduces the requirement that the Registrar of Deeds must register all customary land rights and forbid the occupation of newly allocated land unless it has been registered.
It also provides that all persons who are already in occupation of land granted to them under the repealed Act must apply, within six months of the commencement of the new Tribal land Act, to have their land registered by the Registrar of Deeds.