THE small village of Ha Moahloli is a few hundred meters away from the iconic Maletsunyane Falls, a 192-metre long natural phenomenon that frequently attracts tourists from within and outside the country, especially during public holidays.
One of the highest single dropping waterfalls in Africa, Maletsunyane Falls creates a haze of smoke as the water plummets into a spectacular gorge, giving rise to the name Semonkong – the small town near the falls – which is loosely translated into Place of Smoke.
This past Moshoeshoe Day on 11 March 2017, a public holiday held to commemorate the legacy of Basotho founding monarch Moshoeshoe I, was no different as hordes of people once again made the 120 kilometre trip from Maseru to camp by the majestic falls.
One such group of tourists was the staff of Bashoesheoe Pele Car Rental, a local fleet management company based in Maseru.
In addition to being tourists, the company made sure to leave smiles on the faces of Ha Moahloli residents by donating food parcels before returning to Maseru.
Recipients of the largesse mostly included children, with some adults also taking home the sugar, cooking oil, salt, candles, soap, matches, bread and biscuits handed over by the firm.
Bashoeshoe Pele founder and Managing Director Poppie Madonsela told the Lesotho Times on the side-lines of the handover ceremony that celebrating Moshoeshoe Day through assisting the less privileged was important for the company as its values resonated with those of the founding monarch.
“As a local company that seeks to empower Basotho, we are passionate about assisting members of the community that are less fortunate than ourselves such as children and people with disabilities,” she said.
“We decided to do this donation on Moshoeshoe Day because as our name suggests, we very much identify with the generous and humane attributes that King Moshoeshoe I was known for.”
Ms Madonsela added that more of such community charity activities had been lined up.
‘Maphoka Moahloli, who spoke on behalf of the Ha Moahloli headman, said the goodies were very welcome as many people in the village were struggling to make ends meet because of unemployment and food insecurity owing to the increasingly dry weather conditions in recent years during the crop planting period.
“Donations such as these are very welcome to our people as it is not easy for most of them to make a living. Our struggles here are mainly due to unemployment for many of our younger members of the community,” Ms Moahloli said.
“We are also beset by erratic weather patterns that are making it difficult to cultivate crops and most people here are subsistence farmers. The dry weather conditions have become common in recent years.”
Established in 2015, Bashoeshoe Pele offers a wide range of vehicle and plant hire services pooled from ordinary Basotho from all corners of the country. The pooled vehicles include sedans, bakkies, mini-buses, trucks, motor bikes, cranes and different types of plant machinery among others.
Other services include chauffeur services, vehicle tracking and insurance, school transport and tours among others. Currently, the company has pooled approximately 1 000 vehicles that are hired out to clients for different purposes for varying lengths of times.