THE Lesotho Electricity Company (LEC) has donated M80 000 into the Queen’s National Trust Fund which benefited at least five orphanages yesterday at Ha-Makhoathi.
The donation by LEC was what the company had promised to donate in the Queen ’Masenate’s National Trust Fund at her annual gala dinner celebration.
It is at this event that business men and individuals are invited to spend time with the queen while raising funds for the disadvantaged children in the country.
LEC was part of the exquisite party where it pledged M80 000 for the trust fund.
The beneficiaries of LEC’s generosity are God’s Love Centre in Sekamaneng, St. Leo in Ha-Makhoathi, St. Paul School for the Deaf in Leribe, Kananelo School for the Deaf in Berea and Phelisanong Centre for the Disabled in Pitseng.
Each of the beneficiaries will be donated with M16 000 worth of electricity units.
On behalf of the receiving orphanages, ’Mathabang Sefala who is the overseer of the St. Paul School for the Deaf said nothing has made them happier than the gift they received today.
“We are very much appreciative of the Queens National Trust Fund that takes care of so many children and even as we are many today we are remembered in the donations given to orphanages,” Sefala said.
Sefala said the gift of electricity units is more significant in its importance to the home that she is overseeing because all the children are blind and they use hands and facial expressions to communicate.
“We need light all day long, even at night lights need to be on so that they can keep on communicating without barrier of darkness,” Sefala said.
“This electricity will be very important in carrying out our daily chores for the orphanage to run,” she said.
Unlike many orphanages that are in the country, St. Leo Orphanage does not have an erected building or home for the children it looks after but cooks breakfast and supper for 82 children chosen by the chief.
Theresia Thabeli, the founder and carer of this orphanage, said “all I do is care for the children from their homes, they come to the school on Monday, Wednesday and Friday”.
Thabeli started cooking for orphaned primary school children in 2008 when she realised that most of the children would come to school hungry of which many were orphans infected with HIV.
“I would see their mouths pale waiting for the 10:30a.m. bell to ring so that they go and eat and some would not even take their medication as they should because of not being able to eat on time and even after school suffer in hunger,” Thabeli said.
Thabeli then communicated the feeling of pain and hurt of seeing these kids suffer to the principal of the school who “understood my stress and supported me”.
Thabeli had to teach and cook for her children, as he calls them on the days she had to.
In 2012 and 2013 Pick ’n Pay got into an agreement with the school to give it food when they need it.
“They often give us vegetables, food that is near expiry date, tinned stuff that has dents. The only trouble I have is I have to pay from my own pocket transportation cost of the food,” Thabeli said.
A member of the Queen’s National Trust Fund, ’Mabataung Mokhathali, said the trust fund has two departments where the first is a trust fund that help children in education and care while the other is called “hlokomela bana” where every need and challenge of a child is met ranging from food, counselling, clothes and rescue those that are abused.
Mokhathali said both these departments work together.
“The queen realised that the donation by LEC was sent into the first trust fund and she transferred the gift to the Hlokomela Bana department,” Mokhathali said.
Ben Masoabi, talking on behalf of the Director LEC, said they are happy together with those that are receiving the gift.
“LEC is a national electricity company that works for the people and it is aware of the needs of the nation it serves and those that are in need,” Masoabi said.
Masoabi said in their annual budget as a company they have money set aside for corporate social responsibility activities as a form of giving back to the community that supports it.
“This may look like little money but giving the little you have is better than not giving at all. We therefore are glad that we are demonstrating the care we have for our people and as Christians we know that the hand that gives is that gets blessed,” Masoabi said.
Why invest for the future
AN investment plan forms a critical pillar of a financial plan, says Tokiso Nthebe, a local author and financial services adviser.
Nthebe, the founder of TKO Financial Wellness and Advisory, says when people invest, they can use their money to buy assets that will increase in value over the long term.
He says these assets can help them build wealth.
“When you invest, your money starts to work for you by providing returns that will beat inflation,’’ Nthebe says.
Nthebe says there is a huge difference between saving and investing.
He says investing requires that you take some level of risk in exchange for an expected return or growth.
Nthebe says Basotho should consider many factors before they decide to start investing.
“It is important to have a clear strategy that guides your investment decisions and to work with qualified professionals,” he says.
Nthebe says one should consider their growth mind-set, investment goals, and their risk tolerance.
In addition, one should consider what kind of growth or return they expect.
He says one should find out whether the institution they invest in is licensed or regulated and how long one should invest.
Nthebe says one should further consider what risks are associated with the investment option and whether there are any associated costs.
He says it is also important to remember that investments take time.
“There are no short cuts to building wealth. Do not fall prey to get-rich-quick schemes,” he says.
Moreover, Nthebe says the investment landscape comprises commercial banks, asset management companies, and insurance companies.
He says each provides different financial products and services.
Nthebe says the Central Bank of Lesotho (CBL) also offers investment solutions such as treasury bills and treasury bonds that Basotho can consider.
Depending on your investment goals, he says financial service providers have a wide range of investment solutions to choose from that cater for short, medium, and long-term goals.
“I encourage Basotho to do thorough research and seek professional advice before making financial decisions,” he says.
Vince Shorb, the United States National Financial Educators Council CEO, writes that “many of the financial problems people face today started when they were young and making their first financial decisions”.
Shorb further says taking on too much debt, not investing early, and failing to plan can take one decades to recover from such.
However, it takes financial literacy to make good decisions, he says.
Financial literacy has been perceived as a tool that gives you the opportunity to be confident and empowered to live the quality of life you have worked hard for.
Shorb says one of the wisest decisions one can make to prepare for the future is to invest.
Investment has been defined as the commitment of funds with a view to minimising risk and safeguarding capital while earning a return.
When Covid-19 hit and the government shut down all gatherings in April 2020, there seemed no way out for ICONICS (Pty) Ltd, a budding events management company based in Leribe district.
They had two options: shut down or innovate to keep the business going.
They chose the latter.
Three years down the line, ICONICS (Pty) Ltd has completely transformed itself from an events management and public relations company into a manufacturing company that is now the envy of Lesotho.
“The closing of events translated into the closing of our business,” Rapitso Mosebetsi, one of the co-founders of ICONICS (Pty) Ltd told thepost this week.
Mosebetsi established ICONICS in partnership with Tumo Mahapa.
Faced with collapse, Mosebetsi say they began buying Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) such as surgical gowns, disposal coveralls and safety apparel for resale.
Eventually they decided to manufacture the PPEs and safety clothing. That was the turning point.
But since the company was already down, Mosebetsi says diversification was a hard nut to crack.
“It became quite a long journey (for us),” he says. “We had to come up with something new for the industry.”
He says they had to overcome stiff competition from giant companies and come up with something unique that would set them apart.
“That was how thermal heating apparel was born,” he says.
“We are the first company to produce thermal heating apparel,” he says.
The company manufactures thermal clothing, which is electric clothing, using power banks of five voltages.
“The voltage is so low to electrocute a person,” he says.
The clothing also has a power button to turn it on and off.
Mosebetsi says the thermal heating apparel is on corporate clothing as well as high-visibility clothing.
Mosebetsi says they started the journey with the support of several organisations, such as the Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) and the Basotho Enterprises Development Corporation (BEDCO), to build their capacity.
Mosebetsi says they also got mentorship support from organisations such as the Global Entrepreneurship Network.
The results of years of hard work are now all out for everyone to see.
In 2022, ICONICS won the M100 000 Business Plan Competition hosted by BEDCO.
This grant enabled them to acquire land and buy five more industrial machines.
This did not only enable the company to increase their production to 100 worksuits a week, but it further created permanent jobs for five people as well as three temporary workers.
Last year, the company took part in the Exporter of the Year event hosted by the LNDC in partnership with the Lesotho Post Bank and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Mosebetsi says they won the award for Lesotho’s most innovative and versatile exporter.
He says this did not only put them in the spotlight, but it further encouraged them to do more.
ICONICS was announced as the best exporter of the year at an event hosted by the LNDC earlier this month.
Mosebetsi says this made them proud, as the award is aligned with their vision.
The award further gives the company an opportunity to participate in the regional competition.
He says this opportunity will further give the company a competitive edge in terms of production locally and globally.
“It will be an honour if we can win the regional competition,” he says.
In terms of markets, Mosebetsi says the company has had the opportunity to list their products in the African Trade Market since 2020 with the support of USAID.
This is an e-commerce platform that opens up the market for African countries to list their products.
Mosebetsi says the company did not only get publicity, but the client database also increased.
He says they moved from supplying individuals only to big companies, different organisations, and different government departments such as those involved in mining and health.
Considering the decline of the Lesotho textile industry, Mosebetsi says their secret to success has been their being innovative.
“Our sustainability is matched with innovation,” he says.
Mosebetsi says it also requires patience coupled with lots of investment in terms of time.
“Rome was not built in one day,” he says.
He says working as a team also plays a critical role.
Despite their achievements, Mosebetsi says the market for innovative industries is one of the hardest nuts to crack.
He says the company is in the process of not only making their products known but also educating people about their safety.
Mosebetsi says the other challenge is the decline of the South African Rand as compared to the US Dollar.
He says some of their materials are sourced from China.
Therefore, it is more expensive to buy such materials.
ICONICS is not only seeking to make their brand well known globally, but Mosebetsi says they are also seeking to create more jobs for our youths.
LetsGo and Win!
LETSHEGO Financial Service has launched the LetsGo and Win loan consolidation campaign where customers win weekly and monthly cash prizes of up to M150 000.
The campaign, which was launched yesterday, will end on November 8.
The LetsGo and Win campaign rewards customers for consolidating their loans.
It is aligned with Letshego Lesotho’s version to offer competitive products that cater for the evolving needs of its customers.
The financial services company operates in Lesotho, Botswana, ESwatini, and Zambia.
The Marketing Manager and Business Partner, Tšotetsi Seema, said Letshego Lesotho is committed to delivering increasing value and options to customers.
Seema said this programme is a testament to that commitment.
“The campaign invites customers to consolidate their loans into one low and easy repayment with reduced rates and they stand to win weekly and monthly prizes,” Seema said.
“The weekly cash prizes will be won by lucky customers randomly selected and notified through Letshego Radio shows,” he said.
Additionally, he said two lucky customers will be randomly selected each month and given a chance to spin the wheel of fortune with a chance to receive a maximum of M20 000 each.
“The loans consolidation campaign makes it easier for customers to choose Letshego Lesotho as their preferred financial services partner.”
He said this innovative campaign aims to help individuals streamline their debt payment while benefiting from reduced interest rates.
“Debt consolidation can help customers get a lower monthly payment, pay off their debt sooner, increase their credit score and simplify their life.”
Letshego Lesotho’s Head of Sales, Distribution and Marketing, Motebang Moeketsi, said managing multiple loans can often be overwhelming with varying interest loans due dates and terms.
“The campaign addresses this challenge by combining multiple loans into a single, easy to manage repayment plan,” Moeketsi said.
He added that this simplification not only eases the financial burden on borrowers but also potentially leads to significant savings over time.
Moreover the new consolidation campaign invites customers to take advantage of their best-in-class financial services provided through Letshego Lesotho branch network and digital platforms.
“Letshego Lesotho is committed to increasing financial inclusion through its efforts to serve underbanked communities, promoting financial literacy and delivering positive social impacts for its customers and communities.”
Business2 months ago
Committed to creating jobs for Basotho
News2 months ago
Mahao faces WhatsApp storm
News2 months ago
Former minister Lehana dies
News2 months ago
Murdered woman’s family wants justice
News2 months ago
LEPOSA deputy president ousted
News2 months ago
Pushing synthetic agri-products
News2 months ago
Master goes AWOL
News2 months ago
Suspect in Matabane killing arrested