Letshego Legal Guard on Tuesday evening celebrated its growth and success in style, by officially opening their own refurbished bigger, better and spacious offices near the BTA offices.
Welcoming the guests at the occasion, Letshego Guard General Manager, K. Olebile, took the guests, the road the company had traveled up to this point. He cited the positive impact the company has had on the lives of average Batswana.
Olebile gave a brief history of the company saying Letshego Guard was formed two years ago as a fully owned subsidiary of Micro Provident Botswana and was mandated to administer and sell affordable and appropriate legal expenses insurance products to citizens of Botswana.
He revealed that the company’s main objective is to caution Batswana against financial ruin that may be caused by the usually exorbitant legal fees required by attorneys in the country.
“With a client base of 40 000 members, it is necessary that Letshego Guard acquires adequate resources to be able to offer and maintain a high standard of customer service,” Olebile said.
Olebile asserted that many Batswana did not enjoy full access to legal services and now, with the advent of legal expenses insurance, all Batswana shall access these crucial services as and when the need arises.
The road was, however, not smooth sailing as the company was armed with only an idea that was unheard of in the country. Elsewhere, such legal expenses insurance industry was a huge success story. He cited South Africa, Namibia, America and Europe as countries in which such industry has flourished.
With such huge success stories being quoted from elsewhere, the company could not fear much and embarked on the initiative. Thus, Letshego Guard was born and was launched on the 10th of March 2006.
The company trained young Batswana to take the good message to the people.
“I must appreciate the massive support that we immediately received from the community and other stakeholders,” said Olebile. “Organizations were willing to open their doors for our sales consultants to address their employees even during working hours. Some organizations would even invite us to come and address them without us having requested an appointment,” he said proudly.
Olebile said the company boasts of five attorneys who apparently deal with an average of four cases per day. An estimated number of twenty customers are seen everyday.
The Secretary for Financial Affairs and Registrar of Insurance, Wilfred Mandlebe, officiated at the function and applauded the company for the Legal Guard House. He said the building marked a significant milestone for Letshego Guard and their clients.
“You will agree with me that, in our today’s modern world, access to legal services can no longer be considered a luxury, but rather an essential part of our lives…a human right,” Mandlebe said.
He reiterated what Olebile had said earlier and said the industry came at a time when legal services were generally considered expensive in the country and hence not accessible to the majority of the citizens.
“Letshego Guard’s operations come at a time when Government is trying to make the judicial process more widely accessible to the people,” Mandlebe said. “Last year, we witnessed the opening of a number of state of the art buildings that house Magistrate Courts in several major villages in Botswana.”
He offered that while the infrastructural developments would contribute to the delivery of justice in the country, the accessibility of legal services to the citizens of this country goes beyond government’s responsibility.
Mandlebe said that, with such arrangements, sentiments like “Justice delayed is justice denied” would definitely be a thing of the past.
He complimented Letshego Guard for sticking to its mission statements of being a market leader in making justice accessible to the society and for creating job opportunities since the company employs more than 200 Batswana.
Mandlebe encouraged young Batswana who want to make a career in the Insurance Industry to be equipped with certificates of proficiency (COP) as is a requirement of the law, which aims to ensure the professional integrity of the industry.
He told those in attendance that, in its continued effort to create a conducive environment for the growth of the insurance industry, Government is working on a Bill on the Non-Bank Financial Institutions, which would, among others, provide for the establishment of a regulatory authority for all the non-bank financial institutions in the country.
“This regulatory authority will regulate and supervise Non-Bank Financial institutions, so as to foster safety and soundness of the industry, and achieve the highest standards of business conduct, the fairness, efficiency and orderliness in the non-bank financial sub sector,” he said.
The occasion attracted numerous stakeholders, among them community leaders. Managing director of MPB, Jan Classen, was present at the occasion and presented donations in the form of “five year service awards” certificates to Letshego employees.
The MPB handed over P20 000 cheques to voluntary organizations such as SOS Tlokweng, Masiela Trust fund, Botswana Society for the Deaf and
St. Vincent De Paul.
On the other hand, Letshego Guard itself also donated P20 000 to Life Line Botswana.
During the course of the function the participants toured the Legal Guard House to view the refurbished offices. The beautiful offices had one problem, however, as it has no access to for wheelchair bound individuals.
The Chief Operating Officer of Letshego, Frederick Mmelesi, said his company would soon introduce satellite offices at Lobatse, Jwaneng, Ghanzi, Selibe Phikwe and Letlhakane.