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Invest in hospitality sector, says LTDC boss



MASERU – Lesotho Tourism Development Corporation (LTDC) boss, Mpaiphele Maqutu, wants Basotho to invest in the tourism and hospitality industry.
Maqutu said despite the fact that the country is endowed with rich natural beauty, Basotho are still hesitant to “participate in the industry and they watch while others are generating income”.
‘‘Eswatini is rich through the products of tourism but Lesotho cannot see how much treasure they have,’’ he said.

Maqutu urged Basotho to invest in the hotel industry saying there is need for more hotels in Lesotho to accommodate tourists.
The LTDC chief executive was speaking at a function to mark Scenery Guest House’s 10th anniversary where he was the guest speaker last Friday.
The director and co-founder of Scenery Guest House, Thabang Sekhiba, said the business had seen amazing growth over the last 10 years.
Scenery Guest House now has two business premises in Maqalika and the Stadium Area in Maseru.

Sekhiba thanked Winnie Konetse, their partner in the business, who encouraged his wife to start the project.
He said Konetse had always been a pillar of strength in the company.

“We realized that more guests who are coming to Lesotho are sleeping in South Africa yet they are working here in Lesotho,” ’Marethabile Sekhiba, the manager and the co-founder of the guest house, said. That is when they decided to set up the guest house, she said.
She said they initially only had three rooms, but they have now grown the business and now have 31 rooms at the two sites.

She said Lesotho, which is known as the Kingdom in The Sky, has got more resources and “we are closer to God who gave us this beautiful country”.
Sekhiba said it is their responsibility as Basotho to grow the economy of this country through the hotel business.
The General Manager of the guest house, Ralehlatheng Mphaka, said they have contributed significantly to the economy of Lesotho by creating jobs.
Mphaka said most Basotho live in extended families and a bread winner has to provide for many dependents.

“Suppose these 24 permanent staff we have here each cares for 10 people. This means we are able to put bread on the table for 240 people,” Mphaka said.
Speaking at the same occasion, the Lesotho Hotels Hospitality Association (LHHA) chairperson, ’Mamothe Mohapi, said accommodation in Lesotho is scarce and needs to be improved.
‘‘We are living in a capital city where there are so many visitors coming in, so there is a great need for the establishment of accommodation facilities in Lesotho,’’ she said.

Refiloe Mpobole

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