Mmegi celebrates 40th anniversary

MMEGI HQ. PIC MORERI SEJAKGOMO
MMEGI HQ. PIC MORERI SEJAKGOMO

It is said that life begins at 40. Ohh… really, does it? Or is it just an age-old mythology without any substance? Most societies and pundits would argue in the affirmative, supporting this analogy that indeed at 40-years-old, an individual or institute would have already harvested adequate experience, skill and foundation to empower them to advance further in human development and in innovation.

And as one unknown writer put it “Life begins at 40, is not merely an adage; it's an empowering reminder that each phase of life offers fresh beginnings. It's a nudge to appreciate the wisdom that comes with age, embrace evolving life circumstances, and most importantly, to celebrate the journey that led us here.” So relevant has the aforementioned maxim been to the revered media institution that is Mmegi formerly known as Mmegi Wa Dikgang. Though the roots of Mmegi in its former incarnation can be traced back to 1968 when it was established by the late visionary, Patrick van Rensburg as an A4 newsletter when its cover-price was five cents at Swaneng Hill School in Serowe, we are, however, celebrating Mmegi’s 40th anniversary in its current format which began in 1984, when it turned tabloid (A3 size). The newspaper, which was one of van Rensburg’s projects at Swaneng, would then relocate offices to Gaborone in the same year, but continued to print in Serowe at Serowe Printers, some 300km away from its headquarters in Gaborone. Indeed Mmegi has gone through significant transformations over its life span.

As the newspaper became an integral part of the Botswana society through generations, becoming the people’s link to the world outside the immediacy of personal contact, both locally and internationally, it has had to make sure that it first be viewed in conjunction with the social context of the community it serves. Whenever social orders, economic and political events took root, Mmegi has had to play an important role in their development. However, to achieve this, the newspaper has had to become and remain the people’s eyes and ears. The newspaper could only continue to wear this mantle if it had its finger on the pulse of change, which for a long time has earned itself respect from the public. The vital role that Mmegi will play in the forthcoming October 2024 Botswana general elections points to the above. Reporters from the Mmegi media group have always and will become central to spreading news as events unfold from across the length and breadth of the country. They will spend days and sleepless nights waiting to report on the verification, counting of ballots and finally confirming the results. The various transformations mentioned above and in particular the changes that took place over the last four decades were also inspired by market trends in the industry. These would normally take effect after informed decisions had been arrived at following several readership surveys and advertising researches. These processes are normally conducted by reputable newspapers across the world so as not to be seen to be taking their current loyal readers and prospective readers and advertisers alike for granted.

Editor's Comment
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