Tshekedi Khama, Botswana’s Minister of Environment and Natural Resources, Conservation and Tourism, has placed a moratorium on new licences for tourism operations in Botswana’s Mababe and Khwai areas.

Addressing the North West District Council (NWDC) leadership in Maun last week, Khama said there were a number of illegal campsites operating in the two areas, leading to degradation and overcrowding. He said a decision had been taken to freeze new licences in the two areas as awarding new licences would further contribute to encroachment. Moreover, the suspension of new licences would give the government time to come up with the solution.

The NWDC called on the ministry to lift the moratorium, saying it negatively affected tourism developments in the areas.