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Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned!

Keletso Thobega

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There is an interesting anecdote about one former top politician who in his prime, although married, was a philanderer of note who had a field day “chowing” and “blessing” women left, right and centre.

It is said that some of these concubines would taunt his wife and tell her: ‘Keep the ring, we have the man.’ But she was not fazed. She would apparently calmly respond: Owaai, ga lo mo itse yoo monna wa me. O tla lo fetsa gore!’ Interestingly, the couple is still together.

The thing with most men is that they might get their crotch everywhere but they always know where their heart is. Trust me, even Zuma has a favourite wife of his entire harem. It is what it is.
I recently had a chat with an acquaintance about kwaito singer Mdu’s wife, who reportedly told media that she would remain loyal to and support him despite his alleged wild cheating and siring children out of wedlock. It is a case of ‘better the devil you know.’ He is her first love, father of her children and has bankrolled her lifestyle. She knows that her husband is dodgy but loves him anyways.

Most people make difficult decisions in marriage and relationships. For example, most married people who are cheated on know their partner’s ways but they just up appearances. Go na le selo gatwe go itshoka. Cheating in relationships makes many people see red. But when you choose to be a suspicious and insecure person, you will always look for trouble and will never be happy.
Jealousy in relationships, also known as go boulela, is common, and often tolerated. Some people think that being jealous means that your partner loves you, but jealousy can indicate resentment or stark madness.

We should love each other but there should be room to accommodate the next person’s weaknesses. Every normal person wants exclusivity in a relationship but individuals who can offer that are few and wide apart because perfection is a fragment of human imagination. The truth we never want to admit is that human beings are flawed and a happy relationship or marriage is essentially about tolerating your partner and accepting them as they are. You will never meet a perfect person in this world. Motho wa ipaakanyetswa.

Some people react very violently when they feel undermined or fooled in love relationships. Some people are so primitive that they allow their emotions to control them. There have been many documented incidents of jealousy in relationships in our social landscape. Who would forget the incident of the woman who burnt to ashes the house of her love rival, killing her and her sister inside? And then there was the Goodhope woman who stabbed her lover to death over an SMS? Some time back we heard about a woman who stabbed her boyfriend to death in Mogoditshane after she found him canoodling in bed with another woman.

In another widely-publicised incident, some woman caused a scene at a major mall insulting her husband for apparently cheating. It goes on and on. A magistrate has raised concern with the number of women implicated in murder cases. One would think that women are fed up with their men’s ways but honestly, when you met that person, what made you think they are an angel? Reminds me of that song by Trompies that goes: ‘O ne o ntse o nkisa kae fa ke le malabola?’ I don’t condone infidelity but feel that instead of getting your knickers in a knot, just walk away if you are unhappy instead of doing something stupid. Lo tla gobatsa batho, ija!

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Ebenezer!

Yvonne Mooka

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This year marks my 10th year as an employee of The Botswana Guardian and The Midweek Sun newspapers, under the CBET Pty Ltd company.

I still remember one afternoon of 2010 when I was in Francistown. I was waiting for my graduation from the University of Botswana where I did Bachelor of Media Studies. I had just started a freelancing job with Mmegi in the Ghetto when one of the Guardian/Sun managers Tlotlo Mbazo called me offering a job opportunity. See, during our time, UB newspaper- then known as The UB Horizon was hyped and big.

We distributed it across newsrooms in the country. In addition to this, one of my former Journalism lecturers Julia Cass had advised us to always cut our articles and keep portfolios and later send them across media houses for opportunities. So when MmaMbazo called me about an opportunity that had come up, I knew she had seen my work that I had submitted a few months before closing at UB.

Coming into the Guardian/Sun newsroom the first days was exciting yet challenging at the same time. I found many male colleagues that were also very loud and pushy. Intimidating. At times, annoying. Some were old, reminding me of the set up in international newsrooms where journalists are older. The 24 year-old me then was timid and emotional…but zealous and curious. I was impressed however by the female journos that oozed energy and passion.

The truth about the media industry is that there was a time when it was male-dominated. Women were thrown into light beats and strong ones were tackled by males. Though it was the case with Guardian/Sun then, seeing the likes of Phemelo Ramaribeng nee Ramasu pursue News was encouraging. Her human interest stories to a larger extent  contributed to my love for Human Rights issues.

I worked under the leadership of great men who all shaped my career in special ways. The likes of peculiar Mpho Dibeela who has since gone into newspaper ownership; Mike Mothibi, the sophisticated writer with a passion for farming; courageous Abraham Motsokono who called a spade a spade and not a big spoon; fatherly Ernest Moloi who helped build resilience in me; Mbazo, woman of the board who leads tenderly but with a stern posture; Justice Kavahematui with a very calm demeanor; Joe Brown-Tlhaselo the perfectionist who pays attention to every detail in the paper – in fact it was Joe-Brown who welcomed me the first day by offering me a chair and lunch! And then there is  Boitshepo Balozwi, my editor-turned-friend who every now and then blesses me with pearls of wisdom when ‘the devil wants to lie,’ as well as Dikarabo Ramadubu, our moving encyclopaedia.

Still under this list falls Beatrice Mbulawa, the magnificent General Manager who came with a unique style of managing a media house as a finance-steel lady. Joel Konopo and Ntibinyane Ntibinyane have always been deep hence their now establishment of the bullish INK Centre for Investigative Journalism. In 2012, they took me to Amabunghane Centre for Investigative Journalism in South Africa where my mindset changed altogether. That was an investment that I will always use in my Journalism. Douglas Tsiako also deserves recognition for always believing in me. Special mention of Ditiro Motlhabane for always putting me on my toes about my stories as my News Editor.

My colleagues across every department in The Guardian/Sun throughout the decade, both new and old, have been fascinating. The team is a rare, winning breed. Group dynamics is as real as it gets but I can say unfazed, that I learn a lot from every single individual in our newsroom. The energy here is right. It’s amazing.

So much can be said about my decade in our newsroom. Perhaps, my number one lesson is that of servitude. Journalists are servants. They should serve. At church we say EBENEZER – Thus far the Lord has brought me. Thank you.

Facebook/Instagram: Yvonne Tshepang Mooka
LinkedIn: Yvonne Mooka
Twitter: @yvonnemooka
Email: yvonnequeen2003@gmail.com

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The thrill of being boys in the fields of plenty

Matshediso Fologang

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Boys will always be boys. This weekend after a long time I took a walk from my maternal ancestral mekgoro/ditlaagane to the southwest, much along the recently ploughed masimo. In this journey all memories of the early 1960s came to mind.

Then boys were generally a law unto themselves as they could move all over and invade the masimo and take ripe magapu and nche (water melons and sweet reed) without the owner’s consent. Such was known as “go itaya khutu.” It was never considered stealing but helping our boyish greed. This weekend as I traversed these fields with green ripening products I couldn’t help but reminisce about my youth. The things we did then?

We could just raid a field and help ourselves with whatever was ripe. Such acts were punishable by caning of the wrong doers. Still such did not deter the boys from the adventure. Such was the things the boys did with such impunity. Such acts of thuggery were only lessened by some fear of certain fields that were known to be owned by dingaka (traditional doctors) and baloi (witches). We had serious superstitious beliefs that we knew we could become crippled or die if we dared help ourselves with produce from such masimo.

Walking through these masimo, I went deeper into the area and started remembering the past like it happened yesterday. Activities I was part of just came back to mind like these happened yesterday. I recalled one such day we were herding clan cattle and goats. Around midday we realised our morning fill was no more. We were a bit hungry. How could we be hungry in the midst of plenty? Boys being boys, we raided the next nearest tshimo. We helped ourselves with water melons.

We carried our loot into the bushes nearby. We had a feast.  Just as we were ready to leave, one of us came up with a story that the old lady whose field we had raided was a moloi. It was revealed that she would find out who had stolen her melons. Panic and fear gripped us. She was going to get us all dead. She would just doctor our footprints. Such stories we had heard in our daily lives but for us to be potential victims was the worst nightmare then.

Living in a superstitious society then, the things we did then make me just laugh today when I look back. On this adventurous day we drove the cattle and goats up to the nearest hillocks. Something bad happened. As we had almost forgotten the earlier fear, we now raided the trees for indigenous fruits. We climbed up these trees to pick the fruits. One of the boys accidentally fell down and injured his back.

Being products of a superstitious clan the only explanation we could make for this accident was the curse (boloi) of the owner of the melons we had earlier stolen. The next problem we faced was to explain the visible pain our colleague endured. Tradition had it then that anyone who had fallen from a tree would eat his meals from a bed pan until he healed. We all bullied the victim not to show signs of pain.. We were cruel and it was all about being boys. Such was being boys.

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