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News - Date: 21 July 2019
Written by: Elmon Tshikhudo / Viewed: 812
With the closure of the Tshikondeni Mine in the Makuya area, many locals lost their jobs.
Worried about the work shedding in the area, visionary traditional leader Thovhele Lavhelesani Makuya, with his Makuya Development Trust, set out to look for ways of empowering his subjects.
The trust, through the help of another industrious leader, Chief Livhuwani Matsila, got funding of more than R15 million for eco-tourism development.
Makuya and members of the trust visited Chief Livhuwani Matsila in the Matsila area on Saturday on a fact-finding mission.
The Matsila Development Trust has created more than 500 jobs for locals. Speaking during the visit, Thovhele Makuya said they were trying to forge partnerships with leaders who were striving to better the lives of their communities and that he could not have made a better choice than Matsila. “We are from a place where unemployment is rife, and we felt that we should go all out and seek ways to turn the situation around. We heard of what is happening here and we are very motivated and encouraged by what we saw here.”
He added that, besides the eco-tourism project they were working on, they were looking at other options, such as agriculture, that could create many jobs. “We are not doing it for ourselves, but for our people. We are happy that, with the assistance we are getting from the government and Chief Matsila, there will be light at the end of the tunnel," he said.
Chief Matsila, who took the guests around the different projects in his area, said traditional leaders should always be at the forefront of the struggle against unemployment and poverty. "As a trust we have taken it upon ourselves to assist wherever possible, and we are reaching out to many traditional leaders to conduct workshops free of charge.”
He added that Thovhele Makuya “has the same developmental agenda and we are happy that our partnership is already bearing fruits, with many of his people going to gain meaningful employment".
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The Makuya Development Trust entourage, led by Thovhele Lavhelesani Makuya, at a vegetable farm during their visit to Matsila, where they were hosted by Chief Livhuwani Matsila.
Elmon Tshikhudo started off as a photographer. He developed an interest in writing and started submitting articles to local as well as national publications. He became part of the Limpopo Mirror family in 2005 and has since been a familiar name among the newspaper's readers.