The Oxford English-Setswana, Setswana-English School Dictionary (OESSESD) has been hailed as an essential part of Botswana's national heritage by senior lecturer in English Linguistics and Lexicography at the University of Botswana's (UB) Department of English, Dr Thapelo Otlogetswe.
In an interview with Showbiz, Otlogetswe, its chief editor, said that the dictionary, which had been in the making for around three years, would be available in Botswana in two months' time.He said that the dictionary is in its final stages as they are cross-checking to ensure everything is in order before officially launching it.The dictionary is a step in the right direction, as there hasn't been many products developed that promote and preserve Setswana, Otlogetswe said.
He added that there has been only one dictionary published to date."To date we have had only one English-Setswana dictionary that was published in 1875 and written by Tom Brown under the London Missionary Society." He said that over the years the dictionary has been reprinted and edited.Otlogetswe added
He however gave praise to jokes and comedy such as Mabijo that he says aid people to read Setswana without being aware of it. Furthermore he said that the dictionary is better suited for Secondary School usage from Forms One to Five. He however said they are yet to make a submission to the Ministry of Education and Skills Development if they open for a call for new material. Otlogetwe said that in the meantime when the dictionary becomes available they would market it to the general public.According to Otlogetswe, the OESSESD, which is published in Britain, is 800 pages and can be used by an average Motswana.