THE Lesotho Tourism Development Corporation (LTDC) recently introduced a new investor who is now managing the Visitors’ Comfort Facility (VCF) to the Butha-Buthe communities.
Located just outside the Butha-Buthe central business district, at the Caledonspoort border, the facility will be run by tourism outfit, Southern Express, for the next 25 years. The company will pay rentals to the LTDC while also remitting two percent of revenue generated from events to the community.
The government-owned facility has been idle for more than five years.
The LTDC recently introduced the new investor to the community to provide for a smooth working relationship.
The introductory event was attended by different stakeholders among them the Tourism, Environment and Culture Ministry, the Lesotho Mounted Police Service (LMPS), the Butha-Buthe district administrator’s office, the National Security Service (NSS), the Town Clerk, Tšoana Maliba Cultural Group and tour operators.
Southern Express director, Motlatsi Russell, told guests at the event that they would strike to collaborate with all stakeholders in the area. He said he was also looking forward to working with the community to ensure that many people benefit from the running of the facility.
“I want to see the community forming associations to provide services to the business so that as many people as possible benefit,” Mr Russel said.
The facility will on 4 September 2021 host a food and arts market which Mr Russell hopes will prove the potential of the business.
LTDC public relations officer Molapo Matela said the coming in of Southern Express was in line with the corporation’s mandate of ensuring that there is community beneficiation in the running of the facility.
“The investor is expected to work collaboratively with the host community and other stakeholders and ensuring they benefit either through job creation, while also enhancing the tourism product which will lead to an upsurge of visitors in nearby places tourism destinations thereby increasing revenue for all businesses in the area.
“In addition, the VCF is will provide a platform and an opportunity for tour operators, tour guides and handicrafts makers to trade and exhibit their products and in the process enhancing the tourism value chain,” Mr Matela said.