Gaborone — Trees have been a subject of interest and a topic of discussion for a long time.
It is no wonder they are said to represent life, growth, peace as well as nature.
They are also known for providing numerous benefits necessary for survival, including clean air, filtered water, shade and food.
Some believe trees can be treated as beacons of hope and insight and at the same time encourage people to persevere even in the harshest conditions.
It was against such a backdrop that fourth president, Lt Gen. Dr Seretse Khama Ian Khama started a tree plating initiative in an effort to secure the environment for the future of the next generations.
Launching the tree-plating initiative at Sir Seretse Khama Memorial Junior Secondary School Friday, a school he also a patron of, Lt Gen. Dr Khama planted a Bolusanthus Speciosus (Mosokaphala).
He explained that he found it fit to start such an initiative and intended to roll it out ot other parts of the country. However, his concern was that people caused harm to trees and the environment.
"In many instances environmental degradation is done by us for our own survival."
Thus, after plating the tree, he encouraged Batswana to plant trees in order to prevent effects of deforestation as well as environmental degradation.
Welcoming guests, the school head, Mr Mmoloki Moreo said his school was privileged to be the first place were Lt Gen. Dr Khama decided to kick-off his tree-planting initiative.
"Trees are synonymous with life because they provided life," he said.
Mr Moreo also revealed that moving forward, the school intended to establish a Khama Outdoor Picture Mosaic Remembrance Wall 'where we intend to put in a permanent display of pictures of our First President, Sir Seretse Khama, to honour and keep his memory alive.'
He also noted that the school also intended to establish a Wall of Excellence where names of students who obtained excellent results in Junior Certificate Examinations would be displayed.
A student representative, Omogolo Letsamao gave the fourth president some produce from the school's recently moderated agricultural practicals, to give to any charitable organisation in the society as a token of appreciation for his charitable courses.
In closing remarks, South East regional operations director, Mr Labane Mokgosi hailed Sir Seretse Khama Memorial Junior Secondary School patron for his noble gesture, which he said was a motivation to all, to preserve the environment.
"We promise to take care of this tree and make sure that it grows to the maximum that it can, as it is a landmark," said.
Meanwhile, Lt Gen. Dr Khama promised that he would continue supporting the school with football kit and other donations, particularly during prize giving ceremonies.
<i>Source : BOPA</i>