Botswana’s innovation space has always left a lot to be desired with it still lagging behind most countries that have advanced in the last decade.
However, the country is slowly catching up to the world with more innovations and solutions coming out during the coronavirus (COVID-19) period.
Bushe Ndlovu on Thursday launched his key skin care product range under the Malcolm P.A.C brand. Ndlovu, 15, completed his Junior Certificate school examinations recently. While he awaits his results he has kept himself occupied by creating a range of skin care products to protect drivers and pedestrians from the harsh effects of the sun. “My dream started two years ago due to my dislike for harsh weather conditions in Botswana and I shared this with my mum who bought into the idea, but at the time I thought maybe somebody would come up with the solution to that problem. But nothing happened, so I decided to do it myself, which is why we are here,” Ndlovu remarked. The business is still working on the development of the product range, which includes sunscreen, insect repellent and clothing items designed to cover areas prone to the sun exposure. Armed with a desire for solving a problem, Ndlovu was lucky to get a supportive mother who has been with him throughout his journey.
His mother, Kefilwe Mukokomani, pointed out that the support she gives her son should be an inspiration to other mothers who are still holding on to the outdated path of raising job-seeking children. Funding coordinator at Botswana Innovation Hub, Sithembile Dingake pointed out that she was delighted when Mukokomani approached her with Ndlovu’s business venture, which she saw as a real solution in response to a problem. As a funding officer for the innovation hub she expressed concern over some of the business proposals that they receive at her office of which some are solutions that are not suited for the Botswana context. “I believe Bushe’s innovation is a timely one and is problem-solving oriented, which is why I believe it will be able to compete, but that is all dependent on how he runs the business. Not all of the businesses that have come here were able to succeed,” Dingake said.
Dingake advised Ndlovu to be steadfast and committed to the success of his innovative solution.