Simmering tension is rising in the small community of Khwai settlement, which is disgruntled at the way the community development Trust is run.
Already 163 members of this community have written a letter to the District Commissioner demanding permission to call an urgent general meeting through which they may amicably discuss matters of concern or vote out the current board of Khwai Development Trust, which they suspect has betrayed the community’s development agenda.
However due to the current state of emergency that started in April this year due to the outbreak of COVID-19, they have not been allowed to convene the meeting.
“People are looting and misusing property of the Trust and we are watching in shock but we’re helpless because we cannot convene a meeting during the state of emergency,” stated one of the concerned group members, Baefesia Sango.
Sango and two other members of the group, Daniel and Sisco Ntsogotho came to Maun this week to seek audience with the D.C following months of impasse between them and the board and they say they have been doing so since May.
At the centre of their complaints, Sango explained, is a long list of issues that needs to be discussed with the board, including a court case which was settled out of court, allegedly without consultation with the community.
The concerned group maintains that government, through landboard, has in more than three occasions illicitly allocated safari camps under their concession and management to private operators.
All the three cases have since been registered before the court, but one was withdrawn and settled out of court.
However the concerned group expressed displeasure as they suspect the new board, especially the chairperson could have been paid to kill the case, which has the potential of taking away what belongs to the community and giving to an individual.
“That is our suspicion because he is seemingly living beyond his means. With his little salary he has managed to buy a BMW X3 within a short period in office. It is very suspicious,” added Sango.
Sango’s companion, Daniel Ntsogotho chipped in to say, “we are afraid they may do the same with the remaining two cases. So, what we want is an annual general meeting so we may vote them out if it leads to it.”
Court cases in question include Tsaro, Machaba and KDT &SLS safari camps which the landboard allocated to private parties while they were still under the Trust’s lease. They are therefore suing the landboard for the mess.