Botswana: Land Use Diversification Can Grow Sector, Create Jobs

Gaborone — Diversifying land use will ultimately grow the agricultural sector as well as create more jobs for Batswana, says Assistant Minister of Agriculture Development and Food Security Ms Beauty Manake.

She was speaking in an interview following cabinet and COVID-19 presidential task team meetings held at Serene View Garden near Oodi on Monday.

Ms Manake said diversifying land use could also assist Batswana to have alternative sources of income.

She therefore encouraged Batswana to utilise their land for maximum benefit.

Turning to Serene View Garden, Ms Manake applauded the owners Mr and Ms Justice Sethibe further encouraging them to venture into more different activities while at the same time producing food for the nation.

She urged Batswana to make use of services provided by the farm.

Meanwhile the owners have revealed that they started operating in 2016 and had since developed four hectares of their 9.7-hectare farm.

Mr Sethibe explained that at first they did not have a clear plan and relied on savings from his 15-year teaching service career.

The farm started with arable farming, which proved unviable, forcing them to change tack into business-related activities, he said.

Mr Sethibe said the plan was to develop the farm gradually as they had not wanted to acquire loans.

Serene View has 11 employees and according to Mr Sethibe, would have expanded and increased staff by now had it not been for the COVID-19 pandemic.

Plans for the farm include venturing into horticulture and accommodation.

For her part, the facility's events manager Ms Gloria Chaba said it offered the best outdoor and leisure activities.

Services offered include wedding packages, bridal and baby showers, corporate as well as team building events.

Meanwhile, Ms Margaret Justice-Sethibe has expressed gratitude to government for choosing to hold the high level meetings at the farm.

Source : BOPA

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