Young local queens make Botswana proud in Thailand

Leshatho Pabalinga, Tia lekgoa and Katlego Matheakgomo at press conference after their arrival from Thailand. PIC PHATSIMO KAPENG
Leshatho Pabalinga, Tia lekgoa and Katlego Matheakgomo at press conference after their arrival from Thailand. PIC PHATSIMO KAPENG

Junior Idol World 2023 Botswana queens are back home following a successful campaign at the Junior Idol World 2023, which was held in Bangkok, Thailand from January 4-9 2023.

Although they failed to bring the crowns home, they neither did not come empty handed from the pageant as they brought some awards. Botswana was represented by Katlego Mpudi on the (Mini), Puoeng Maje (Little), Leshatho Pabalinga (Pre-Teen), Tia Lekgowa on and Andy Metsemebedi on (Teen) categories. Upon arrival on Friday, Tia told journalists that the competition was very tough as they were competing against other talented girls from different countries across the world. “The journey was not easy more especially when it comes to looking for sponsors. I am lucky because I have a family and the right people by my corner. I was competing with girls from nine other countries and managed to scoop the first runner up title. Even though I did not win the crown this time around, I am confident that I will do much better and win in my next international beauty pageant,” she said.

Tia further explained that even though they had language barrier, they were able to chat with fellow contestants. She said they found ways to chat with them through phone applications. Tia added that she was going to undertake projects that would elevate the lives of her peers and encourage them to be better people. Her mother Diphetogo Lekgowa, who was alongside her, said as parents they had to support their children. However, she said it was difficult for unemployed parents to support and ensure that their children’s dreams were fulfilled more especially when one was unemployed. She added that she had to do peace jobs and knock on people’s doors for sponsorship. “I managed to pay flight tickets. When we were in Bangkok, I could not manage to pay for registration fee so I had to ask Batswana for help because she would not compete without paying it,” said Lekgowa. “I contacted some women and through Ngami Times who also helped asking for donations. They raised P5,000 in a day and she was able to register and compete. Going international was expensive and we had to stay longer because there were no flight dates, meaning we had to pay for accommodation.” Tia’s mother added that she learnt a lot through the experience and had encouraged her daughter to come up with projects that would raise money for her upcoming international pageants.

Editor's Comment
Tighten the law on drug dealers

Our youth are perishing; their once hopeful bright future is going down the drain; all because of illicit drugs.It is very easy to blame the addict, but it is not as simple as that! Drug dealing is a very lucrative business for some shameless people amongst our society and as such they have come up with tight strategies on how to push their business.Drug addiction is bad, and while the individual on drugs sometimes might have been the one who...

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