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Annual Gospel Awards 2019 nominees revealed

The Annual Gospel Awards organisers held a press conference on the 7th of September 2019, at Baisago University College Outdoor facility, announcing the nominees for the awards. The awards ceremony will be held on the 2nd of November 2019, at Baisago Convention Center, under Theme “Reviving the over looked potential market”.

During the press conference the Production Manager for the awards Mr. Phempheretlhe Pheto, while welcoming the guests said the reason they came up with these awards was due to the challenge they embark on as Gospel Genre Music in Botswana. He continued; “most Batswana seem to have no interest in the genre hence, as the owners of the genre we have to take a stand for the advancement of the genre but we can only do it through your assistance. We believe tomorrow Batswana will have interest in the gospel music genre. He further said they will be working with VIV as their partner and other sponsors which will soon be announced. ”, said Mr Phempheretlhe.

The chief Judge for the awards Mr Seabe Raditladi, while announcing the nominees said their verdict came from all the albums submitted which has made sure they find time to listen to all he albums and singles submitted and most of the participants were males than females.  He further said he realised most participants did not enrol for the  category of Traditional Gospel music therefore, as the judges across all categories, even if you did not enrol for the category, they decided to place the artists on the category that suits their album. They judged on the identity of the artist, packaging of the album, element of creativity, lyrical content and visual appeal. The nominees are:

 Best Contemporary Gospel Album- Male

1. G&K- Let us pray
2. Kesebonye Sereto- Earthquake
3. Dimpho Kegakilwe- African Praise
4. Mpho Mponwane- Living miracle
5. David- He reigns
6. Ounah- The Throne

Best Contemporary Gospel Album-Female

1. Miss Gee- I can be
2. Sesame Baingapi- Mohau
3. Sesha- more than a song
4. Motlalepula- Yahweh

Best Traditional Gospel Album- female

1. Meyoress Mochankana- Best of Mayoress Mochankana
2. T.O.T Mbali- Bringing the ark of the Lord
3. Lorato Salane- Beautiful moments

Best Traditional Gospel Album- Male

1. Thuto Majaga- My prayer
2. Lyon Nkokonyane- Setshabelo
3. Lebaone Tlhagase- Bayete
4. T.T- O tla leng
5. Obakeng- Gotseba Modimo
6. Tshegofatso Kwadiba- The God of Enoch

Best New Comer Gospel Artist

1. Dimpho Kegakilwe
2. Thuto Majaga
3. Sesame Bainyapi- Sesha
Best Gospel Acapella Group
Ghetto Gospel Masters- Golokile

Best Single

1. Brother Noah- Ke Pholositswe
2. Salty- O maatla
3. Salty- I believe
4. Kay Bee- Ruhakitho

Best Gospel Artist- Female

1. Motlalepula
2. Sesha- Sesame
3. Miss Gee  

Best Gospel Video

I am blessed- Tebogo Radiboko
O Modimo- Ounah
Rohakitho- Kay Bee
Falling back- Ounah
Best Gospel Legendary
Issac Malei
The Saints Gospel Band
Otogetswe Mosekwa
Kennedy Balemoge
Best Gospel Community Outreach
Fresh oil Ministries
Worship House Miracle Centre
Best Gospel Radio Show
Alfred Ntshwene- Gospel Melodies
Michael Gaotloge- O rudisa mowa wame

In an interview with one of the organisers, Letsweletse “Shabisto”  Moshabi said they are tilling the seed of the gospel industry as they want to improve the gospel artists in Botswana, He further said this  is the second edition of the annual awards. “This year there were so many submissions as compared to last year. He said they are still in touch with sponsors such as Botswana Insurance Financial Management and Baisago University, which sponsored the artists and the venue. Other sponsors will be announced soon.

He said it seems gospel artists are more deprived than artists of other genres as the market has been identified but it is difficult to attain it. ‘As gospel Artists we are limited to being pigeon-holed on only singing in church then selling the CD in return, or being given a T- Shirt or singing at a wedding and reward being given food in return.’ He further said, they wonder why it seems only gospel music artists are the ones struggling or limited to entertainment shows like other genres and why are they not able to come with ideas that can improve the genre in order to sustain themselves.

Moshabi said It is painful to hear that one of the gospel artists has died and little contributions are made to honour the Artist as they are besieged but they are people who sing and live for God and that is why they end up indulging in wrong things as they now know they are deprived as artists in the Gospel music genre. In conclusion he said they are promising better set up, more visuals though LCD screens and more lights, which will be of top notch. “ As AGA awards, we recognise you don’t give up whatever  you need, continue trusting in God for where there is no God there is no life, said Moshabi.

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200,000 Members of International Church Hold Virtual Prayer Service for Covid-19

22nd September 2020

After its initial outbreak with a cluster of pneumonia cases at a seafood, poultry and live wildlife market in Wuhan City, China, Covid-19 has spread rapidly across the globe. The virus has hammered economies worldwide and brought devastation to many.

On 16 September Shincheonji Church of Jesus, a church with thousands of members in various countries, held a global online prayer service to pray for the victims of the coronavirus and their families, healthcare workers, government officials and for the complete eradication of and cure for Covid-19.

The virtual prayer service was live-streamed to the entire congregation with more than 200,000 members in countries all over the world participating, including the USA, the United Kingdom, South Korea, Australia, South Africa, Namibia and Zimbabwe.

In keeping with social distancing, health protocols and protecting its members from possible exposure to the coronavirus, Shincheonji arranged the virtual gathering for members to pray together in safety and set an example for others.

Prayers were mainly for the healing of those infected with the virus, for overworked healthcare workers who are struggling to fight Covid-19, and for people in economic distress in the wake of the pandemic. The overwhelming online participation from its members worldwide showed the desire and urgency to end this virus and for healing and restoration in communities.

The Chairman of Shincheonji Church Mr Manhee Lee suggested this online virtual gathering and said that all believers will continue to pray at the church’s worship services until the complete eradication of the coronavirus.

At least 1,700 of the church’s South Korean-based congregation have donated their blood plasma for research around an effective treatment. Convalescent plasma has also showed promise as therapy for Covid-19 and is believed to have reduced the severity of symptoms in critical patients.

“In order to defeat Covid-19, we need to embrace, love, and unite,” as global citizens, the church said. “We wanted to do all we can as believers by praying for the people working to prevent the spread of the virus and healthcare workers who are working at the frontlines of this battle against Covid-19 and we believe that God will answer our earnest prayers.”

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AFRIMMA nominates Vee Mampeezy

22nd September 2020

The annual prestigious music awards, African Muzik Magazine Awards and Music Festival (AFRIMMA), has resumed this year. But this time around with a virtual version of it.

The awards that celebrate the originality of African music has unveiled their seventh edition. The awards seek to promote the African talent by bringing together on the same stage African legendary artists to celebrate African culture.

The event was established by the International Committee of AFRIMMA, in collaboration with African Union to reward and celebrate musical works, talents and creativity around the African continent while promoting the African cultural heritage amongst African countries.

However after the Covid-19 global pandemic, the event will not be hosted on a live global stage, but it will be hosted virtually and nominees are expected to deliver their performances virtually. The AFRIMMA Virtual Awards 2020 is set to be the first of its kind in the African music world with performances coming from different artists around the world and audience catching the performances, speeches and award presentations on multiple streaming devices.

Amongst the many who are nominated by the AFRIMMAs is local sensation Vee Mampeezy who has been nominated in the category for Best Male Southern African alongside music giants, Black Coffee- South Africa, Slap Dee – Zambia, Cassper Nyovest- South Africa, Master KG- South Africa, Jah Prayzah – Zimbabwe, Vee Mampeezy – Botswana, Shyn – Madagascar, Tshego- South Africa, Tha Dogg – Namibia and Yanga Chief – South Africa.

Mampeezy has established with WeekendLife that prior to that, he had received an email from AFRIMMA confirming his nomination. They wished for him to perform which he said he will confirm the performance first with his manager, but as for now he is not sure if he will be performing.

“We have accepted the nomination. It is such an honour to be nominated alongside music giants like Black Coffee. I am very excited, others I am not as excited to be nominated alongside them because I have been nominated before with them. I do not mean to say they are not great, they are great in their respective right,” he said.

“We should be excited as a country that Botswana has been nominated as well. Before anything else, the fact that we are there as nominees makes us winners. It is such an honour to be recognised more so that Botswana is a small country with a very small population.”

Famous and most decorated artists the likes of Diamond Platnumz, Mr Flavour, Harmonize, Davido and Jah Prayzah are also amongst the nominees. However, South African based artist affectionately known as Master KG has been nominated six times for Video of the year, Best Male Southern Africa, Artist of the year, Best Collaboration as well as song of the year.

Master KG’s song ‘Jerusalem’ has been making waves internationally, and it was used mostly during the pandemic to shake off the Covid-19 anxiety. The song was nominated after South African Music Awards (SAMA) failed to nominate the young talented artist.

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Miss Earth Botswana catwalks to save the environment

22nd September 2020

Miss Earth Botswana is an annual local environmental-themed beauty pageant competition promoting environmental awarenessconservation and social responsibility. The reigning Queen dedicated her year to promoting specific projects and often addressing issues concerning the environment.

The Queen does this through school tours, tree planting activities, street campaigns, coastal clean ups, speaking engagements, shopping mall tours, media guesting, environmental fairs, storytelling programs to children, eco-fashion shows, and other environmental activities.

Even though this auspicious year has been faulted by the COVID-19 crisis, Miss Earth Botswana 2020 Seneo Perry has seen this as a chance to fix her crown, and get dirty in conserving the environment. This is highly impressive as it expresses how dedicated she is not only in wearing the crown, but putting in some work to create a better greener world.

Perry is a Botswana based environmentalist, equipped with a degree in Entrepreneurial Business Leadership from Sheffield Hallam University (BAC) and a top 5 finalist in Miss Earth Botswana 2019. As an eco-warrior at heart, she has dedicated her time and energy towards educating and empowering the next generation on the importance of preservation and careful management of the environment and natural resources (a clean and safe environment.)

Miss Earth Botswana will be hosting SOS Children for a film documentary dubbed “Into the Okavango” on Saturday 19th September, in Tlokweng. This initiative is influenced by National Vision 2036 Pillar of National Values which is our identity, our unique natural and cultural resources, tolerance of diversity as well as national values constitute a value preposition that makes Botswana a place to live, work and do business.

In an exclusive interview with WeekendLife, Perry’s Manager, Shimah Keakopa, said the purpose of this event is to encourage the children to open up their minds a bit more to think outside the box as they are about to choose their career paths and what more they can offer to their country as upcoming young leaders.

“This event is held under the theme ‘‘Botswana will have healthy ecosystems that support the economy, livelihoods and our cultural heritage as well as enhance resilience to climate change’’. We strive to help young children grow up knowing their purpose in life and what they actually do in achieving their ambitions.”

For her part, the queen said since 2013, conservation topics have always attracted her interests towards achieving a clean and safe environment for the benefit of humanity. She said “Botswana relies heavily on the tourism industry as it contributes 7 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Our tourism industry has been characterized as more of a fauna and flora type, which is the great attraction to local and international tourists.”

“Therefore it is imperative that we conserve and continuously engage in environmental issues, to preserve our untouchable pristine wilderness. Furthermore people who live closest to natural resources generally absorb the greatest cost associated with conservation,” she said.

Perry told WeekendLife that a lot still needs to be done to ensure everybody is of one mind in an effort dedicated towards environmental conservation, which not only benefits the flora and fauna but the economy as well through activities such as agriculture and tourism.

“In Botswana, there still not enough policies (some outdated) and public awareness towards environmental conservation, especially the collective effort that should exist between government, private sector and Non- Governmental Organisations (NGOs).

Whereas members of the general public do not have adequate access to the information on the importance of environmental conservation and this results in them being unaware of the best practices and standards in environmental conservation,” she said.

When she is not impressing at beauty pageants, Perry is a Managing Director of “Restoring the Prime Colour of the Earth” a charitable organization established in 2019 with the objective to educate both young and old people the importance of keeping a clean and safe environment and to restore the breath-taking landmarks in Botswana.

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