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Amantle Ntshole: Ascending songstress and engineer

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Many will remember her as the petite aspirant singer with a strong and powerful voice who took to the My Star stage in 2011, and sang passionately with unmatched keenness and hunger for success.

Born Amantle Ntshole, 22 years ago, this ambitious girl who hails from Morwa village, has worked hard to make her dreams come true. Amantle openly shares about being raised in an underprivileged home, but that this didn’t stop her from dreaming big.

“I could see that beyond that affliction, I could rise from poverty and one day share my testimony. I thank God for uplifting me. The challenges I have faced in the past didn’t break me but rather, made me who I am today,” she says.

Amantle comes from a close-knit family comprising of her parents and two sisters, Andile and Chedza, who she says are all supportive of her music career. Growing up, Ntshole never imagined that she could sing before crowds because she was extremely shy and lacked confidence. Things changed in 2007, when she joined a choir at Borwa CJSS called The Saint. Everybody instantly fell in love with her voice.

In 2011, immediately after completing her Form 5 exams, she decided to enter popular singing competition, My Star. “I didn’t have any expectations or clear goals. However, after I made it to the top ten, I realised that I had potential,” she says.

Amantle was eliminated in the 9th spot. Her knockout was a huge blow. “I cried like a baby. I thought it was the end of me. I felt cheated and wanted to prove a point. I carried a lot of negative energy because I was so hurt,” she recalls.

She eventually decided that languishing in bitterness and wallowing in pity would do her no good. Amantle wasted no time in putting together her music career. Her first ever single, Drop it Low, released in 2014, didn’t do well. She returned to the studio with talented producer, Orbylardo, and burst onto the music scene in February this year with the contemporary hit song, Moratiwa.

It topped music charts on local radio stations and pumped at jazz shows, parties and in kombis. The song is a plea to a man who has abandoned his home nest to return. This is an accurate reflection of reality, especially considering the rampant “trend” in our society in which some men dump their partners with children. Amantle had hit home for many Batswana; and what more, she sang in Setswana.

Amantle has since then worked with local artists such as ATI, Mapetla and DJ Kuchi among others. She hopes to one day collaborate with local talents Charma Gal, Lizibo and Samantha Mogwe. She also dreams of working with South African house music duo Uhuru and Nigerian music star Davido.

Amantle recently returned from Lagos, Nigeria, where she attended the Africa Music Awards (AFRIMAs) as the country’s representative and nominee in the “Best revelation” category. Ntshole is also a nominee in this year’s Yarona FM Music Awards’ best female singer category. At the recently held BOMU awards, she was nominated in the Best Female Artist, Best RnB and Best Newcomer categories. She walked away with the latter gong.  

Earlier this year, she was among the artists invited to perform in Zimbabwe at a concert aimed at raising awareness against xenophobia. Amantle has also undergone a makeover from a tomboy, and nowadays sports a stylish hairdo and dresses in fashionable garb which accentuates her slim perky figure, and gives her an alluring, mature and effortlessly feminine edge.

But if you think that she’s all song and looks, but no brains, think again… Amantle balances her music career with her studies at the University of Botswana where she is a third year student in Mineral Engineering.

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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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