Addressing the media about the land board’s mandate, its challenges and achievements at a press conference in Francistown last week, Nzehengwa said that there was a serious shortage of tribal land for residential purposes in the whole district.
He said that from the 22 559 square/ km, only 5445sq/km was reserved for actual human settlement while the rest was taken by national parks and forest reserves.
He acknowledged that the district was a big tourism area, but expressed the land board’s worry concerning both the large number of transfer of plots through selling and the demand for change of land use from residential to commercial.
He said that the shortage was worsened by the regular flooding especially in Pandamatenga farms and Chobe west which makes the entire area difficult to access.
In an effort to make the land board more transparent,Nzehengwa revealed that their aim this financial year was to allocate 669 plots but noted that so far they have managed to allocate only 543.
519 of those plots were allocated for residential purposes while 24 were for other uses.
The land board, Nzehengwa further revealed had met their target to survey 436 plots. “Ee have already surveyed 521 plots, which means we already passed our target by 85 plots , something which is a great achievement for us,” Nzehengwa said.
The officer said that Chobe land board was also currently working on the systematic registration of plots which commenced in Kazungula where they planned to register 3600 plots.
“ As we speak now, 2995 plots have been registered and 2 500 of those plots have been verified,” he said and further noted afterKazungula the registration will continue to other villages to enable the land board to easily monitor and regulate plot allocation in the area.”
Meanwhile Chobe land board Chairman, Nelson Masule urged land owners to consider leasing land to the youth who are currently in need of it for business purposes.
“We encourage Batswana who have land to consider renting their plots out instead of selling,” Masule said.
Also present at the event was the Public Relations Officer (PRO), Ndiye Joel who noted that unlike other areas, the district does not have problems with squatters apart from rare cases in Kavimba.