International paint brand Dulux has completed the painting of one of the oldest townships in the capital city of Gaborone – Old Naledi. For tourists that come to the city of Botswana, or even Batswana themselves it is always quite an experience to just drive or walk through the township of Old Naledi which is affectionately known as Zola because it is not like any other. Even though it used to be known as a place for all sorts of crimes and where criminals stayed, many people are beginning to embrace Old Naledi as a safe place to visit and stay in.
One thing that was dull about the place was the buildings which were just plastered with cement or bricks only. This made the place to look quite very disorderly especially that everyone built in whatever way worked for them as long as they had roof above their heads. Now that has changed – the dullness has been replaced by colourful and enticing houses. Over 1800 houses have been painted by Dulux at a cost of P1 million covering the cost of paint, labour and accessories. Dulux General Manager Wellington Murambiwa said having concluded painting the township is quite a special thing for them.
He said that he is happy of the relationships built and the lives changed through the campaign. “This is a journey that is quite humbling for us because at Dulux we believe in the power of colour,” he said. He said the four years campaign started in March 2011 where they painted the exteriors of houses in Old Naledi or any property that can be painted in order to promote beauty. He said they wanted to bring dignity, comfort and social upliftment. Not only did they paint the houses but they also managed to work and train 73 young people from the community in painting so that they can be able to get painting jobs.
He said they have already started referring their clients to some of those they trained since they have given them qualification certificates. The PS for the Ministry of Lands and Housing Thato Raphaka hailed Dulux’s efforts as the attainment of the Vision 2016 pillar of a compassionate and caring nation. He said the Lets Colour Project has brought colour and vibrancy to Old Naledi and changed the lives of young people that they trained.