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Kenewendo: Masisi’s golden girl

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Her first name, Bogolo, denotes ‘greatness’ in Setswana and she has lived up to it. Tall, slim and pretty, with bewitching beady eyes, Bogolo Kenewendo has made a positive impression on many with her intellect and visionary outlook.

There was a buzz recently when the 31-year-old was appointed Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, the youngest minister in Botswana’s recent history. Only Daniel Kwelagobe beats her to the title of Botswana’s youngest minister of all times, having become minister himself at the age of 26 shortly after completing his studies at Gaborone Secondary School (GSS).

Bogolo has also been hailed as Cabinet’s best catch.

Not a bad feat for a lass who a few years ago was an ordinary student at GSS and later UB. Inside sources say that Kenewendo is President Mokgweetsi Masisi’s “golden girl.” A source says she was “head-hunted and earmarked” for her current position. But with an MSc in Economics as well as work experience that spans consulting locally and in Ghana, she also has the insight of what makes the continent tick in relation to global development.

Hitting the ground running…

There are no airs and graces about her – she is grounded, yet she also means business. In an interview with The Midweek Sun, Kenewendo notes that she has already outlined a mandate with her team. “We intend to create a conducive environment for doing business that will stimulate local investment and foreign direct investment; to facilitate the development of industry (domestic trade), so that we are able to trade and export, primarily.” She says that the priority is to facilitate doing business no matter the size of the business. “SMMEs are the engine of any economy. A vibrant private sector will create jobs, which is our national goal.”

Investment in youth vital

Kenewendo believes that it is vital to understand and invest in young people. “Young people need a conducive environment to explore their potential. We have a lot of amazing and hard working young people and we can only know what they are capable of if we give them space and support,” she says.

It is time for Africa

She envisions an Africa that is united, prosperous and economically-liberated. “This is the Africa that was envisioned by great leaders such as Masire, Mandela and Nkrumah, among others… an Africa that embraces its roots, encourages innovation and supports its youth.”

Every girl needs love…

Kenewendo has revealed she is single – which could probably be music to the ears of her legions of fans, mostly men who have a crush on her. With eligible bachelors falling over themselves to woo her, it remains to be seen who will be the lucky gent to sweep her off her feet.

Work hard and play harder

All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. The Minister says that she spends her free time with friends and family. “The family I live with plays golf together and we also sing and dance a lot!” She admits that she can’t say no to travelling to new places. And oh, she is also a foodie. “I never bow down in an eating or tasting challenge!” she adds.

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BMC secures beef market in Seychelles

Dikarabo Ramadubu

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Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) will soon start to sell its beef to the Island of Seychelles. Not only will they sell frozen raw meat, but will also send corned beef for trial in the Island.

All this is thanks to last week’s visit by President Mokgweetsi Masisi who included in his delegation executive management of the BMC, led by Chief Executive Officer, Dr Akolang Tombale.
The agreement signed between BMC and two leading Seychelles companies, will see BMC exporting at least 48 tonnes of raw beef to the island possibly from October. The names of the two companies that BMC signed an agreement with are Seychelles Trading Company which is a quasi-government organisation, and Rosebelle Company which is privately owned.

Although both have agreed to trade with each other, BMC cannot start immediately, as they have to wait for the green light from Seychelles companies who still have to apply for import permits in accordance with the law of their republic.

Speaking to The Midweek Sun, Tombale expressed gratitude that they managed to get good business in Seychelles through the assistance of President Masisi. “We are ready to export any time from now. As you know Seychelles is an island surrounded by mountains and cannot produce much if not anything. “They therefore depend much on imports even from as far as Brazil and Europe. Their economy is driven by tourism and they do not differ much with the European market in terms of the demand for beef as most tourists come from Europe and United States.”

Dr. Tombale said they agreed with the two companies that since “we are not sure about the logistics we will start by selling 24tonnes to each company per month, meaning we will be supplying the Island with a total of 48 tonnes per month. The idea is to start small and grow bigger as the people get used to our beef.” BMC has also negotiated to sell small stock meat to Seychelles and successfully negotiated for local chicken farmers to start selling their range chicken to Seychelles as well.

According to Tombale, he negotiated the deal after being approached by local chicken farmers amongst them Kgosi Mosadi Seboko of Balete, who requested that “we should try to find a market for chicken farmers as we go around the world searching for the beef market.” Tombale revealed that for a start both range chickens and small stock will not be supplied in tonnes or large quantities as they will be sold on a trial basis.

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G-west community reunion-walk a resounding success

Keletso Thobega

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Multitudes turned up for the Mosengwaketsi community walk and braai session this past Saturday in Gaborone West. The walk was held in the morning and was preceded by football games and a braai session that went on until late in the evening.

According to the event director Tshenolo Palai, the aim of the community day event was to revive community spirit and address crime and social ills. “The Mosengwaketsi community reunion will be held not only to create a platform to build unity but also address the social ill of passion killings,” he said.

Palai said that they had also invited health stakeholders for a wellness segment because they had realised that there are many health related conditions that affect the quality of people’s lives hence they had joined forces with religious organisations, the business community, neighbourhood outreach policing and other stakeholders in the area to encourage a culture of unity and create dialogue between all the parties.

He noted that they had wanted to create a relaxed environment conducive for different people to engage and strengthen their networks. He said they were also concerned with the high rate of crimes of passion in Botswana and also wanted to create a platform for both men and women to open up on issues that affect them because most people tend to be more relaxed in a social setting.

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