The Minister of Lands and Housing, Nonofo Molefi, has directed that dikgosi address members of their communities about the Improvement of Land Administration Procedures Capacity and Systems (LAPCAS), which will be implemented soon.
Addressing Dikgosi (Chiefs) in the sixth meeting of the second ‘Ntlo Ya Dikgosi’ (House of Chiefs) on Thursday in Gaborone, Molefi said the Government had identified an improved Government Land Administration system as a prerequisite for economic development that has the potential to diversify the economy, contribute to economic empowerment and particularly create job opportunities for people in rural areas.
The project is said will cost the Government P54 million.
The Minister said the LAPCAS system will address the current challenges in Land administration and these include poor record management because they will be able to know who owns what, where and for what purpose.
Some Dikgosi, however, felt the system might lead to thieves knowing about their properties and where they stay.
Molefi said there is no secret in the world and therefore the system does not expose anything.
“Nothing is kept secretive and the system does not put anyone to the risk of thieves because we (Government) will also ensure there is safety in accessing such information,” said Molefi.
H further explained that the LAPCAS will ease locating the area described in the certificate and even help Banks in allocating loans and assist other companies, such as Water Affairs, although the parties that would like to access the information will have to pay a certain amount of money.
The Dikgosi asked how places which do not have Dikgosi are going to be addressed on the issue and how the Lands without owners will be dealt with. Molefi said such places without Dikgosi will use historical identifications and get their place names for identification purposes; adding that places without owners will be advertised for owners to claim them and, if not claimed for in a specified period, they will be repossessed by the Government.
Molefi urged people to develop their plots or the Land they have been allocated because they are likely to be charged more for not having developed the Land, depending on the length of time one has owned the land.
“This System will also help us identify if there are people who obtained the land illegally,” said Molefi.
He urged all people to ensure that their Land has been registered and they have certificates so that the system does not leave any one out.
Molefi reminded the Dikgosi to remind people to move their animals to places where there is grazing land and to make decisions and choices together on expanding villages so that they leave out grazing areas.
“We have started a pilot project on Systematic adjudication on tribal Land at Matebele in Kgatleng, and we will be moving to Ramotswa before the exercise can be reviewed,” said Molefi.