The acting dirctor of rural development and land reform, Ms Rendani Sadiki (left) is being shown around the burnt-out Matsila Guest House during her visit.
The mood at Matsila outside Louis Trichardt is one of joy and residents are waiting with high expectations.
This follows an announcement that the burnt-out Joe Matsila Guest House is to be rebuilt.
Two months ago, the community watched in anguish and disbelief when what used to be a beacon of hope, the multimillion-rand Joe Matsila Guest House, was razed to the ground by fire. The fire left 25 luxury rooms in ashes and nothing was saved from the building. The luxury lodge, one of the successful projects under the Matsila Development Trust that employed 50 people, is still in ruins.
The guest house burned down only two weeks after Pres Ramaphosa's visit to the area, where he showered the leadership of Chief Livhuwani Matsila with accolades for having initiated such a development. He hailed the project as a symbol of black excellence.
During a visit to the lodge earlier this week, the acting director general, Ms Rendani Sadiki, said they were involved in most of the developments at Matsila and that they had brought chiefs from all over the country to come and see for themselves and for them to copy what was happening there.
"This is a pilot project and already 500 jobs have been created, and this is what we as government want. We are very excited about what we saw here. This is deep rural, but you can all see the economic activity taking place here.”
The other reason they visited the area, she said, was to look at the lodge that had burned down. “Our expectation is that the work starts now and, hopefully, by January it will be up and running again. We are also encouraging the locals to do the construction themselves, so that they will own up the quality as we move away from the usual value chain," she said.
An excited Chief Livhuwani Matsila thanked the government for the support. "When this lodge burned down, residents wept in pain upon seeing their hopes go up in flames. We are happy that the government came up with an intervention and that our lodge will be up and running not long from now," he said.
Date:03 November 2018 - By: Elmon Tshikhudo
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.