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WesBank International Airshow to go on as planned

MOMPATI TLHANKANE
WesBank International Airshow
The organising committee of the WesBank Botswana International Airshow is still hoping to go ahead with the event as planned on May 30, 2020 at Matsieng Airstrip in Rasesa.

WesBank Botswana International Airshow Media Liaison Officer Jonathan Laverick revealed in a press release that the committee is closely following developments with regard to the COVID-19 Pandemic, especially in Botswana and also with regard to the provisions announced in South Africa by President Ramaphosa on March 15, 2020. 

“While we still hope to go ahead with what has become one of the largest charity fund-raising events in Botswana, public health and wellbeing is our paramount concern and we will obviously follow the advice and guidance of the authorities in Botswana,” read Laverick’s statement. 

Laverick further disclosed that they will continue to monitor the situation over the coming weeks and will keep the public and media informed of any changes to their plans.

“The 2020 WesBank Botswana International Airshow on May 30th will celebrate 100 years

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of aviation in Botswana. Today (March 16, 2020) is exactly 100 years since the first aeroplane landed in what was the Bechuanaland Protectorate. An Airco DH.9, piloted by John Holthouse, landed at Palapye Road en route to Bulawayo. The airfield at Palapye was built by Khama III and is one of the oldest continuously used airfields in the world,” he highlighted.

He added that on March 17, 1920, the same aircraft made the second landing in the Protectorate, this time at Serowe, in order for Pierre van Ryneveld to pay his regards to Khama III before continuing with his record breaking flight – the first from London to Cape Town. Laverick concluded that the show would help highlight the surprising large contribution that Palapye and Botswana made to trans-African aviation.



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