Team & Trustees

Board of Trustees

The Foundation operates under the guidance of eight (8) trustees in three categories:

Category I: Trustee Emeritus who holds the honorary presidency of the organization with no voting rights

Category II: Four trustees who are not direct beneficiaries but are appointed based on their commitment to the aims and purposes of the Foundation and offer special talents to the Foundation

Category III: Three trustees appointed from among practitioners and are active beneficiaries of the Foundation’s programs.

Mantoetsi Jobo

Chairperson

Ntate Matsobane Putsoa

Treasurer

Dr. Vusi Mashinini

Deputy Chairperson

Maseabata Ntoanyane

Member

′Mè Letlamoreng Mosenene

Trustee Emeritus/President

A forester and nature conservationist who has worked extensively with non-governmental and governmental agencies in Lesotho and elsewhere in Africa; is a co-founder of the Machobane Agricultural Development Foundation. She was acquainted with JJ Machobane’s books long before she led field trials of the Machobane Farming System and led its re-introduction in the early 1990s through a team of trainers that brought the system to all the districts in the country.

Senior Team

Dr Lepoqo Stephen Ralitšoele

MADF manager

Former lecturer and principal of Lesotho Agricultural College and former Director of Agricultural Research Department in the Ministry of agriculture and Food Security (MAFS); current MADF’s chief researcher in view of climate change which is worrying to MFS practitioners and smallholder farmers in general. Dr. Ralitšoele studied in Europe and was always impressed by how Europeans talked about best practices they had in farming, production of cheese and wine, livestock and in natural resource conservation. When he returned home to Lesotho he looked for best practices in the country for Basotho people. In this search, he met with Dr JJ Machobane and found that the best farming system in Lesotho is the Machobane Farming System (MFS) and he never stopped to advocate for the system among students he taught, fellow researchers and in international meetings and workshops.

ʹMè Nora Klass

Senior field school training officer

A trainee and protégé of Dr JJ Machobane for more than 30 years; she is the most knowledgeable on the field practice of MFS.

 

'Mé Maleshoane Julia Ramasike

Member

MADF Founding board of Trustees

Dr James Jacob Machobane

The Extraordinary Volunteer and Founder of MADF

A visionary and leader; he was fearless, speaking his mind openly in support of what he believed in despite it being viewed as unorthodox, inspiring his fellow men and women to self- reliance by skillful blending of agriculture and elements of their very own culture. The strength of his will and determination has outlived opposition, prejudice, even ridicule to become a living example, a beacon that where there is a will there is a way. His burning desire and key motivation to help his people to “drive out hunger” for he had concluded that it is hunger that deprives his people of independent thought, to be bound to their employers as a dog is to its master (Ntšeli 2001).

JJ as was popularly nicknamed, was concerned with the attitude of those formally educated in the school system of Lesotho that seemed to uphold white-collar jobs over farming. He stressed over and over again that, “everything goes back to this one thing, agriculture”. He was further disturbed that when calamity befell the Basotho farmers’ crops, they tended to adopt a fatalistic attitude; they would pray to God, and would do nothing to help themselves (Lewis, 1959). This attitude he declared has “prolonged the dependency which has led to the abject poverty and hunger of the day, starvation of no less than true slavery….there is need to hasten the ending of human apathy and indignity….” (Machobane, 1981). In trying to rid his people of the scourge of hunger, Linda Pfotenhauer in 1987 writes in the Molepe magazine that JJ “did not join a movement, he became one. He did not subscribe to a set of theories and principles, he developed his own”.

In 1990 the National University of Lesotho awarded James J. Machobane an honorary doctorate for his lifetime achievements as a writer, educator, and agricultural innovator. Dr. Machobane continued to promote his farming system until near the time of his death in 2007 at age 93. The full story of this remarkable man’s life can be found in the book, Drive out Hunger: The Story of J. J. Machobane by Robert Berold (Jacana Media (Pty) Ltd, 2005).

 

POPULAR SCIENTIST: JAMES JACOB MACHOBANE AND MANTSA TLALA

′Mè Letlamoreng Mosenene

Trustee Emeritus/President

A forester and nature conservationist who has worked extensively with non-governmental and governmental agencies in Lesotho and elsewhere in Africa; is a co-founder of the Machobane Agricultural Development Foundation. She was acquainted with JJ Machobane’s books long before she led field trials of the Machobane Farming System and led its re-introduction in the early 1990s through a team of trainers that brought the system to all the districts in the country.

Clark Tibbits

Volunteer

Clark Tibbits is a planning consultant and former university administrator and lecturer as well as a practitioner of the Machobane Farming System in the United States. He first heard of JJ Machobane’s success in growing potatoes and training poor village farmers as a Peace Corps volunteer in Lesotho in the 1960s. When they finally met twenty years later and further understood the Machobane farming, Clark says “as soon as I recognized its potential, we enlisted a group of its advocates; encouraged Machobane, then 75, to once again promote his farming system and put him in touch with colleagues and donors who might provide support”. And with his support the farming system was registered as a not-for-profit (non profit making), non-denominational, non- governmental organization named after the designer: Machobane Agricultural Development Foundation (MADF). Clark has continued as an informal advisor to the Foundation since that time.

J. Morobe

Member

Dr. M.P Mohome

Member

I.T Mokuoane

Member

E.T Letata

Member

S.T Mokatse

Member

T.T Pitso

Member

Dr Jemal Mohammed

Member (farmer)

Dr Mohammed is an agronomist with several years of experience in research, teaching and extension. He has interest in working with subsistence farmers and believes that subsistence farmers have much to offer to the wellbeing of humanity in general. He started working with MADF soon after he joined the National University of Lesotho in 1991. He played a leading role in evaluation and promotion of farmers own land races (especially sorghum in Lesotho). He cooperated with NGOs to promote MFS in different areas and encouraged students to critically look into the system. He is at present promoting Effective Microorganisms Technology in selected African countries including Ethiopia. He believes that EM technology combined with MFS will go a long way in solving the issue of low crop yield and soil fertility. He is willing to cooperate with the MADF in any possible way as need be.

Advocates

Dr Mathabo Tsepa; Founder of :
1. Mohoma Temeng Youth and Community Resource Centre – Qacha’s Nek
2. Mathabo Academy for Young Leaders Pre-school

Engineer Kingsley Selele: A resident in the Republic of Germany. His wife attended Dr JJ Machobane’s Mantŝa Tlala College at Nqechane – Leribe district | Email kingsley@selele.de


Mr Cecil E Cook: Founder of Techno Share Associates, PO Box 778, Stutterheim 4930, Eastern Cape RSA | Mobile+27-72-390-9783.

Mr Kakole Likotsi: Head of Agronomy Section, researcher in maize, Agricultural Research Department, Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Lesotho | Mobile +266-5892-3086 

Mr Koali Makhobalo: Young smallholder farmer specializing in vegetable seedling and mushroom production, Masianokeng, Maseru, Lesotho | Mobile +266-5881-4135

Pre-school for orphans – Qacha’s Nek

Contacts

For any inquiries please email

info@machobane.com