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Moshupa: The President's village

Small boy walking in Moshupa PIC: THALEFANG CHARLES
MOSHUPA: Giant hills adorning the village of Moshupa, just 56km west of the capital city Gaborone, are spectacular.

The smartly-packed gigantic boulders give the village a rare view with an irresistible picturesqueness that is certainly a tourist attraction.

Viewing Moshupa from the summit of any of the many hills in the village provides the requisite bird’s eye view of the village that is growing in every direction. Fresh air literally envelopes  one country’s incoming fifth President Mokgweetsi Masisi. Now, the excited villagers here have something to talk about just like Serowe, Kanye and Palapye have produced the first to fourth state presidents. Moshupa in the Southern District is the second village south of the Dibete cordon fence to produce a state President since independence in 1966. The late Sir Ketumile Masire, the country’s second president was from Kanye in the Southern District.

 The outgoing President Ian Khama in his endeavour to balance the north and south regions has taken the presidency back to the south after the northern domination.

As if Moshupa was on a ‘beauty contest’ with other areas, it was particularly bubbly during our recent visit, may be to prove a point that it has also produced a President for the country.

When the Mmegi news crew recently visited the village that has produced the country’s fifth state President, Masisi it was like an appointment with nature.

The trees danced as a light breeze blew them side-by-side. It was a marvel to watch the greenery up the hill and below. It was nature at its best as beautifully coloured birds danced with the trees. Our sojourn at the hill behind the main kgotla in particular, provided awe-inspiring scenery. It had just rained and the Mosope River that looks like a giant snake that meanders through the village of Bakgatla-ba-ga-Mmanaana and the gigantic hills that dominate the village landscape were a marvel to watch too.

Away from the deafening sounds of car horns, industries and the busy city life, Moshupa environment provides therapy, as there is no noise pollution common in our crowded cities and major villages. Giant hills, very clean environment and plush green vegetation, the chirruping of various species of birds up the hills, rock rabbits and other animals are a majestic sight to behold. First visitors to the village, which

has a combination of both modern and rural life, are attracted by a sight of stubborn birds, rock rabbits and other rare multi-coloured reptiles, which are a common sight up the hill behind the village kgotla and elsewhere in the village.

The hills complete the beauty of nature leaving Moshupa a rare tourism attraction sight from its rich flora mainly.

The village has its rich history too. A good number of villagers rear small stock and donkeys at their backyards. Donkey carts, bicycles and motor vehicles are common modes of transport in the village. Donkeys are used mainly as a draught power.

A closer look at the village’s giant hills paints a complex picture of nature itself. Giant boulders are smartly packed together with no glue holding them but they have been like that for ages with no threat that they will fall upon the villagers.

Nature can be very interesting. The giant boulders are akin to giant rusted buns or diphaphatha which seem so loose yet never fall down or get blown away by the winds.

Journals show that even the villagers themselves wonder why the giant boulders never fall. “They are believed to fall only when the village chief is dying, as a sign.” By any standards, Moshupa, a village with an estimated population of about 25,000 now (the 2011 Population and Housing Census places the village’s population at about 20,016) is certainly a place to visit.

Moshupa is one of the largest villages in the Southern District and the villagers are known as Bakgatla-ba-ga-Mmanaana.

History shows that the villagers were originally from Transvaal in South Africa and settled at Moshupa around the 18th Century.

As Mmegi’s photo-journalist Thalefang Charles traversed through the Mosope watercourse wielding his long-lenses cameras taking pictures of the thick green vegetation and the wet sands of the river, I quickly remembered stories about the villagers’ self-imposed curfew that one cannot cross the river at night because of the dragon or Kgwanyape that lives in there.

A visit to Mmanaana Junior Secondary School where educationist-cum-politician Masisi taught provided another insight about Masisi’s contribution to the village.

Moshupa has about six primary schools, three junior secondary schools and a senior secondary school.




covid 19 positive people from neighbouring countries

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