Mmegi Online :: Celebrating Batswana who went out and conquered the world
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Friday 16 November 2018, 13:42 pm.
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Celebrating Batswana who went out and conquered the world

Botswana is known world over as a peace-loving nation, but that does not mean that its people do not have a winning streak as demonstrated by a number of individuals in this country who went out into the world and conquered becoming 'monarchs of all they surveyed' in the process. Today, Arts & Culture celebrates some of the individuals and a group that have put Botswana on the world map.
By Staff Writer Sun 18 Nov 2018, 23:35 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Celebrating Batswana who went out and conquered the world








Emma Wareus, 1st Princess,
Miss World 2010
Last Saturday, this beautiful Motswana lass left many Batswana with smiles on their faces as she beat more than a hundred beauty queens from all over the world to become 1st Princess at the Miss World beauty pageant held in the city of Sanya in China.  Interestingly, there are Batswana who feel that she deserved to be queen, but that is another issue.

Mpule Kwelagobe, Miss Universe 1999
Every patriotic Motswana would remember that year when Mpule Kwelagobe snatched the coveted title in 1999 and was crowned the most beautiful woman in the universe in Trinidad and Tobago.  Batswana had something to be proud of at last as Kwelagobe put the country on the world of beauty map.  Mpule was the first Miss Universe Botswana and she was also the first Miss Botswana (1997) to participate in the Miss Universe pageant and her win surely came as a surprise to many detractors. 

She went on to become a UN Goodwill Ambassador and won a number of awards.  Mpule would be feted wherever she went in Botswana, although sadly, nowadays it seems that she has disappeared into thin air.

Kaone Kario, Nokia Face of Africa, 2005
Five years ago, Kaone Kario got the dream that many African lasses wanted by snatching the coveted Nokia Face of Africa, 2005.  This beautiful woman from the tourist town of Maun instantly became a leading model not in the country but in the continent as well.  The South Africa-based Kaone is still a sought-after model and recently became one of the top favourites to be the next presenter of the classy SABC 3 magazine programme, Top Billing.

Connie Ferguson, Actress
Fans of the South African soap opera, Generations were dismayed when they learnt that one of their favourite characters, Karabo Moroka, played by the Lobatse-bred, Connie Ferguson, would be leaving the soapie.  Connie left the small town of Lobatse years ago after winning a beauty pageant to become one of the most celebrated actors in South Africa having been part of the longest running soap opera in SABC 1, Generations for the past 16 years.  Connie is married to a Botswana-born actor, Shona Ferguson who is part of a rival soapie, Scandal on etv.

Thato 'DJ Fresh' Sikwane, Disc Jockey
After

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starting out in local radio stations in the early '90s, DJ Fresh left the country to become one of the leading mix masters in the neighbouring South Africa.  The celebrated DJ, who has performed in a number of cities in the world, has been credited with introducing the house genre in the mainstream music industry in South Africa.  DJ Fresh remains one of the best exports to SA having released more than 20 house albums thus far.

C'goise, San Artist
This San artist became the first Motswana whose work decorated the tail fin of a Boeing 747 when in 1998; the British Airways purchased the copyright of one of her painting.  The news of the achievement of the late C'goise, who was part of Kuru, was celebrated in Botswana.  So far, no other local artist has been able to repeat this feat.

Donald Molosi, Actor
On November 20, Donald Molosi, would become the first Motswana to perform solo during the United Solo Theatre Festival at Broadway. This stage actor will stage Today It's Me, which is a true story of the legendary Ugandan Philly Lutaaga whose soulful Afro-pop rhythms united a generation of Ugandans.

Molosi, who has not been able to perform in Botswana for a number of reasons, has lifted our flag in world stages and until recently he has been staging a play based on the life of the first president of the country, Sir Seretse Khama.

Culture Spears, Traditional Dance Group
If there is a group that has helped change the landscape of contemporary borankana (traditional dance) in Botswana its Culture Spears.   Together with their contemporaries, Matsieng, the group can be credited for having revived the genre among South African Batswana.

Their music is so popular in South Africa such that the group claims that it is also followed by non-Sotho-Tswana speakers in that country.  Songs by the popular group have been played on the South African Setswana language radio, Motsweding fm and they have performed on SABC 1 traditional music programme Roots. 

The group recently performed at South African Traditional Music Achievement (SATMA) awards in Durban in front of South African president, Jacob Zuma and his wives.  One can only hope that these individuals and many others to follow will continue to hoist Botswana's flag higher at home and abroad.

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