The Royal Bafokeng Nation is a unique African community where tradition meets modernity. Located in the Rustenburg Valley in the North West Province, the twenty-nine villages of the Royal Bafokeng Nation boast some of the most innovative approaches to sustainable development in Africa. These include holistic education reform, the use of sport to generate social and financial returns, and converting mineral resources into the world’s leading community-based investment company.
The King of the Royal Bafokeng Nation is Kgosi Leruo Tshekedi Molotlegi, 36th in a long line of visionary traditional leaders. Thanks to the pioneering spirit of the King’s ancestors, the Bafokeng community owns the rights to a part of the largest known reserves of platinum and chrome in the world. Vision 2020 and PLAN: ‘35, the strategic blueprint for the community’s future, aim to create a socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable community true to its African heritage and traditions.
The Royal Bafokeng Nation is fast becoming a model of community regeneration for South Africa, Africa and the world. Bafokeng leadership combines elected, appointed, and hereditary leaders committed to long-term, future-oriented planning. The Royal Bafokeng Stadium was as the first and only community-owned stadium to host a FIFA World Cup.
The Royal Bafokeng Nation and tourism
Aside from their own heritage, the Bafokeng have two distinct advantages in their bid to grow tourism. The first is that their land is close to two world class destinations. The Sun City and Lost City gaming and golf resort, and Pilanesberg National Park attract large numbers of South African and foreign tourists to the area. By developing their own complementary attractions, the Bafokeng hope to add value to the experience of these tourists and to entice them to spend time in their area.
The second is that the staging of provincial, national and even international events at the Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace attracts other visitors. However, they sometimes do not stay over in the Bafokeng area for the duration of events because of a lack of accommodation. For its part, Royal Bafokeng Economic Development (RBED), formerly Royal Bafokeng Economic Board, is already sending young people for training in the hospitality industry in the hope that many of them will return and play a role in developing tourism in the Bafokeng area. RBED also envisages the establishment of a cultural village to bring to life Bafokeng customs and traditions.
RBED’s 2010 home-stays project was a great success with 166 home-stays certified. Also, 44 Bafokeng home-owners hosted guests during the World Cup and some of these have decided to continue in the B&B/guest house business!
The Royal Marang Hotel at Bafokeng Sports Campus is a 5-star blend of luxury and design; comfort and class; indoor opulence and outdoor harmony. With an aesthetic atmosphere rich in earthy tones and sumptuous spots, it is the perfect mix of contemporary style and African authenticity.
Lebone II: College of the Royal Bafokeng
Lebone II, College of the Royal Bafokeng, was officially opened in March 2011 at its spectacular campus in Phokeng, North West Province. The opening marks an important step in upgrading the education system throughout the entire Bafokeng region, which serves about 20,000 pupils in 45 schools.
Founded by the late Kgosi Lebone II in 1997, the College admits talented children and develops them into leaders and agents of change. The College aims to provide young people of diverse backgrounds with the inspiration, education and opportunities to make a positive impact on the Royal Bafokeng Nation, South Africa, and the world.
The Bafokeng vision for education reform includes interventions in literacy and numeracy, mother-tongue instruction in the early grades, effective school management, and strong parental involvement. Lebone II serves as the flagship institution in all these areas, and provides extensive opportunities to the pupils, teachers, and school leaders in the surrounding schools.
Whilst the majority of the College’s children come from the twenty-nine villages of the Royal Bafokeng Nation, thirty per cent come from outside the area, ensuring diversity in the student body. Approximately 80% of the pupils receive some form of bursary. Lebone II offers boarding for students in grades seven through twelve, as well as a 13th-year programme that offers an extra year of academic preparation, life skills, and community service prior to university.
The Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace and Sports Campus
The Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace is a multi-purpose stadium that has rugby, soccer, athletics and basketball facilities. IT also has tennis courts, volleyball courts, an aquatic centre, and a kid’s pool. It has a seating capacity of 45 000 with 24 hospitality suites, team locker rooms, and a fully-equipped clinic.
Enabling and creating winners is central to the location and design of the Bafokeng Sports Campus. The campus is situated at 1,250m above sea level in a region that enjoys a year-round temperate climate, abundant sunshine and little wind interference.
The campus boasts an unusually wide range of professionally designed pitches, fields and tracks, cutting-edge equipment and top-class gym and medical facilities.
The Bafokeng Sports Campus’s high performance gym is a strength-and-conditioning facility with all the equipment necessary to train professional sportspeople. Ideal for athletes looking to improve structural and functional strength or sport-specific power, the gym offers state-of-the-art cardiovascular and weight equipment and an indoor resistance pool.
The Royal Marang Hotel at Bafokeng Sports Campus is a 5-star blend of luxury and design; comfort and class; indoor opulence and outdoor harmony. With an aesthetic atmosphere rich in earthy tones and sumptuous spots, it is the perfect mix of contemporary style and African authenticity
RBN Central Communications