Pandamatenga — The Minister of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism, Ms Phildah Kereng recently opened the Pandamatenga and Savuti Department of Wildlife and National Parks staff accommodation at Pandamatenga Wildlife Camp.
Speaking at the event, Ms Kereng said the accommodation was yet another milestone project that marked the intervention of the ministry, where staff accommodation were built through a partnership with the Federal Republic of Germany under the Kavango Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area.
The minister also noted that the facility would improve the staff's living conditions in Pandamatenga and Savuti as well as service delivery to the Pandamatenga community, whose lives revolve around agriculture.
She further highlighted that staff welfare was critical to ensure productivity in the workplace and therefore it was paramount to motivate staff.
She said provision of accommodation to employees was one way to contribute to higher productivity.
The minister said it was for this reason that as part of its transformation agenda, the ministry had embarked on identifying available opportunities of funding to implement projects that seek to translate policies into action.
"As a ministry, we are aware that the challenges of our people are not limited to environmental problems alone as there are other challenges such as unemployment, shortage of skills, underdevelopment and shortage of land.
Ms Kereng said to address other challenges, government was implementing labour intensive projects that would maximise work opportunities for the locals.
She further implored the community to join hands and fight the rhino poaching issue as it was a concern to the KAZA area and Southern Africa at large.
For his part, the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to Botswana, Mr Ralf Andreas Breth said staff accommodation was very important, which was why his country funded the phase through the KAZA TFCA programme.
He added that they funded the project because they trusted Botswana, especially in the tourism sector and they believed that the workers would take care of the accommodation.
Councillor for Pandamatenga ward, Mr Tuelo Tengenyane praised all the stakeholders who contributed to the project, noting that lack of accommodation was a major concern in all government departments.
The project, comprising six-bedroomed housing units at Pandamatenga and four semi-detached units for eight wildlife personnel at Savuti, was constructed between 2018 and 2019.
<i>Source : BOPA</i>