Connect with us
Advertisement

Benson Phuthego retraces his steps to television

During his hay days as a news anchor at the national broadcaster, Botswana Television (Btv), Benson Phuthego made language his brand. He became a brand name associated with primetime and grown to be a proponent of culture and tradition. Setswana language is embedded in his DNA and reading news remains his primary gratification. However his mysterious exit from the screens almost six years ago left everyone puzzled and calling for his comeback, Writer DAVE BAAITSE takes us through Phuthego’s journey as he retraces his steps back to television and limelight. 

Starting next week Tuesday 13th at 1805 hrs, Benson Phuthego will be presenting a Magazine Program which will premiere on Btv called ‘Lafatshe Letlotlo’ an initiative by Ministry of Lands and Housing.

“We don’t want the dynamiting of language to end up diluting the fragrance of Setswana potency”, said Benson Phuthego.

His journey with the national broadcaster can be dated back as 2005 when he made his television debut. A very passionate Phuthego is a graduate of Core Degree in English and History from the University of Botswana.

His enthusiasm for Setswana and news reading is an inspiration that he drew from legends such as the late Rebaone Mookodi and Justice Gaolekwe who are veteran radio news anchors with Radio Botswana. According to Phuthego, these are some of the people who had the ability to coil a Setswana word from any borrowed word. He gave example of words such as Tshukudu ya temo (Tractor), Sefofane sa Tlhoo- tomo (Helicopter), Kgotla more o itirise (Machine gun). He however narrates that he learnt some of his Setswana usage from the elders since he pays a lot of attention when they talk. Every time he took a seat to read news he knew there are legends watching him therefore he dares not to make a mistake.   

He says leaving Btv was never his intention, however, he found himself conflicted between two organisations that both wanted to have a piece of him. He is now excited that he is back on television and presenting a very unique program that deals with issues of land. To him is a dream come true and he is quoted saying, “I am still available for television if they still want me back”.

Lefatshe Letlotlo is a 52 episodes production by Baboneng Film and they have signed a one year contract with Benson Phuthego who will be presenting the show with another radio veteran, One Rabantheng as the field presenter. The program seeks to go around the country educating Batswana and informing them about issues pertaining to land. They will also engage with experts and property developers in giving analysis on particular topics. Upon the end of the 52 episodes they are hoping to sign another contract to continue with the show because these are very pertinent issues.

While officiating at the launch of the program this week, the Minister of Lands and Housing, Prince Maele said this day marks another milestone for his Ministry, this time around on public awareness and education. He said this is a fulfilment of one of their values of transparency. For quite some time, inadequate public awareness has led to some land seekers being cheated by crooks and fraudsters in land related matters.

A few years ago, the Ministry of Lands and Housing took a decision to intensify information dissemination to members of the public.  This has hitherto been provided through their radio programme called “Lefatshe Boswa”.  It is their hope that through this TV program, they will further enhance information dissemination. 

“The Ministry of Lands and Housing is also undergoing a lot of transformation through a lot of initiatives that will ultimately benefit Batswana and we believe our TV production will help to keep in touch with our customers”, said Maele.

The Minister further stated that his Ministry shall engage with ordinary Batswana, stakeholders, the business people, investors, media and indeed everyone to share on how they can improve on delivering their service to the public.

 “We are on a quest for continuous improvement which we hope will translate to economic benefit for Batswana”, he said.

The TV show is named “Lefatshe Letlotlo”.  One may ask, why “Lefatshe Letlotlo”? Land is a great treasure that must be well managed for the benefit of the economy. A good land management practice promotes social harmony and limits, incidences of war and famine.  “As we celebrate 50 years of independence, we are indeed happy, united and proud. Our land, our Botswana is indeed a happy nation, it is a united nation.  Let us treasure it and secure it so that we can celebrate another 50 years proud of our land”, concluded Maele.

Continue Reading

WeekendLife

‘Mindset’ unlocks positive mindset

2nd February 2023
At the age of 17, Boniface Lewanika is ready to take over the world. He has shown commitment to being the next big thing to ever emerge from Botswana. Mindset MusiQ, as he is affectionately known, is a self-taught music producer. The story of how Mindset started music production can be traced back to end-to-end lockdowns, which jaded him to the core.

At least, for Mindset MusiQ, these lockdowns were a blessing in disguise. He got to unlock the hidden potential in him, or maybe, the creativity that he never knew about. Being locked down meant that Mindset MusiQ has plenty of time to waste, but he was quick to switch his mindset to coming up with something positive.

He saw it much better to waste time on the internet. Well, for lot of people, the internet was the only saving grace then. But for Mindset MusiQ, it was the beginning of a journey that he intends to walk for the rest of his life.

“I became a music producer because I love music. I then asked myself why I should not make music, that’s when in 2020 during lockdowns I started watching YouTube tutorials on how to make music. I didn’t have any knowledge on how to produce a song. YouTube introduced me to Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) which is a software used for music production.”

The Letlhakane born then downloaded his first software which was Ableton Live, which was way too complex and distorted. “I felt it was too hard to learn and I switched to FI studio which was also complicated but fortunately, easy to use. Because I don’t have a good voice to sing, music production became too good to me and very flexible to embark on.”

Mindset MusiQ became part of the Department of Broadcasting Services (DBS) national roadshow, after being picked from the capacity building workshop. He was challenged to speak to the audience, fellow creatives (artists and music producers) and his presentation caught the eye of the adjudicator, DJ Fresh.

“I heard about the artist’s capacity building workshop from my mother, who saw it on Facebook. My father immediately reacted and dropped me off and even though I was late, the host then introduced me and the rest became history. As we speak, I am part of the Top 30, and we will be having the finale on the 11th of February in Gaborone.”

Being on the Top 30 for Mindset MusiQ is a dream come true. This is because he wasn’t even told that there will be a boot camp and grand prizes, and he has always wanted to advance his premature music career. He said this has shown that he is on the right track.

“Working with DJ Fresh is really cool. It’s not everyone who can be afforded that opportunity and the experience humbles me all the time. Already, I have rocked the Thando remix and I can’t wait to do more with his mentorship.”

Mindset MusiQ is currently in South Africa working on cooking more music with industry moguls. He was invited by producer Trey Bankz and some colleagues from Imperial City Music, a new record label in Johannesburg

Continue Reading

WeekendLife

All The Star She Is lands on BTV

2nd February 2023
With zero existence of TV programs empowering women in Botswana, a new show that strives to make that news of the past has just started airing on the tedious BTV. At least, after so many years, All The Star She Is will inspire viewers to see a new change in terms of supporting women in Botswana.

Each incredible series celebrates women but not from all walks of life, but those who are turning heads in the entertainment industry. The show will cast a bright light on women who have conquered tremendous obstacles and weathered the storms.

In an exclusive interview with WeekendLife on Monday, Director of Cosign267 Koone Boikaego said the show reveals the paths that these phenomenal women took to be where they are in the entertainment and media industry.

Cosign267 is a 100% youth owned film and TV Production Company led by Boikaego. It has worked with a number of organization, executing various projects such as filming, shooting, editing and one-on-one couch interviews.

The youthful company recently wrapped up the Department of Broadcasting Services (DBS) three months’ national roadshow and boot camp. It was assigned with capturing all moments of the roadshow, alongside Thato DJ Fresh Sikwane.

“Celebrating women is one thing that is often overlooked. We put together this project to take followers into the lives of creative and incredible women. They are determined to break walls and pave way for the next generation of women. In this show, these women serve viewers with factual stories of how they started and what it takes to be at the forefront, the bittersweet experiences that took them that far. It’s really a show that many young girls can draw inspiration from.”

Breaking down the show plan, Boikaego said airs every Saturday on BTV at 6PM, hosted by One Rabantheng. Rabantheng, famously known as Divine Diva is a media and marketing consultant, legendary radio personality who worked for Duma FM, e-TV and RB2, where she was shown the door for speaking foul of the then President without being aware that the microphone is on.

There are thirteen stars to be featured on the new show, therefore, this means that there will be thirteen episodes. Some of the familiar faces featured on the TV show are: Mpho Sebina, Olorato Ledique, Oratile Kebakile, Nnunu Ramogotsi, Tumi Ramsden, Kelly Ramputswa, Tshepie Olds, Winx Motcher, Mmaphala, Loretta and Nicole Martinez among others.

Continue Reading

WeekendLife

Lifestyle enthusiasts feel Big Brother vibes

27th January 2023

This past weekend MultiChoice Botswana hosted media and lifestyle enthusiasts in Oodi for an evening of fun, drama and everything in between. The treat dubbed Big Brother Titans Botswana media challenge basically recreated the Big Brother experience right here in Botswana.

Big Brother Titans is the joint South African and Nigerian edition of the Big Brother franchise. The series follows contestants as they live in an isolated house and compete for a cash prize at the end of the show by avoiding being evicted from the house by the viewers.

These viewers vote their favorite housemates to stay on the show. The show features housemates from South Africa and Nigeria. The first season of the show premiered on January 15 2023 on DStv.

DStv Botswana Corporate Affairs Manager, Thembile Legwaila told WeekendLife that they saw it critical to host media friends to experience how it feels by being in the Big Brother house.

“For the very first time in history of Big Brother, we’ve seen the merging of two superpowers, Mzansi and Naija, with the Big Brother Titans season and what a better way to celebrate the monumental season than hosting our media friends.”

THE LOVE

Participants were treated to top notch reception complimented by the Oodi sunset which just blew them away. A special shuttle was organized from Gaborone to Oodi, at a farm house that is just incredible in terms of design, aesthetics and ambience.

Of course they were welcomed by soft cocktails and non-alcoholic beverages for those who are not drinkers, and the next booth was an opportunity for housemates to introduce themselves to the man of the house, Biggie. RB2’s new baby Mdu the Party played the role of Biggie, and he nailed the character.

Some of the contestants were asked what they will do with the grand prize of P5000. With my ongoing voluntary movement, #Pad4HER, I needed the cash prize to push the campaign.  #Pad4HER is a campaign that I started last year with an aim of helping female students from disadvantaged backgrounds to have access to sanitary towels. Anyway, luck was not on my side but my colleague from The Botswana Gazette, Gosego Motsumi emerged as the winner.

We got done with the questions and made way into the house. The party began with more drinks and the first challenge kicked off. For this particular challenge, we were divided into pairs. I was matched with Motsumi and we won the first challenge.

WINNING STRATEGY

Other housemates asked how we managed but it was simple: we had a strategy before embarking on the challenge. We sat down and debated on what we need to do in order to emerge victorious.

DStv engaged a phenomenal local chef, Rachel Tlagae who served some enchanting, light meal. Its Big Brother Titans so we ought to mind what we eat and also take note of quantities. Chefs also brought some wine to go with the meal and everyone was contented.

THE WINNING CHALLENGE

Housemates were taken through the last challenge: mental ability. This particular challenge needed them to know who they are as well as knowing their fellow housemates. It was one of the simplest challenges yet difficult. This is where I lost lot of points even though I was at the top (after winning the first challenge).

These housemates were all unique in their own way. From the media side was myself, Sharon Mathala, Leungo Mokgwathi, Gosego Motsumi and Nancy Ramokhua. This is a team which did exceptionally well altogether. Motsumi emerged as the winner, followed by Mathala and me on fourth position.

The third position was won by Loungo Pitse from influencer’s side, and he tagged alongside DJ Gouveia, Dato Seiko, Kedi Molosiwa and Gape Makwati.

Legwaila said “We wanted to have a healthy mix of traditional media (print and radio) as well as social media personalities, artists and content creators in the house. We chose individuals who were characteristically different from each other because variety and diversity is important to us. We of course chose those with outgoing personalities as well as those who are a little more introverted as we wanted the interaction to be authentic and organic. We wanted a solid group of individuals who represented the many different people that make up this beautiful country.”

DSTV IS COOKING SOMETHING

When quizzed if there are plans to have a similar Big Brother Titans Botswana, Legwaila said “MultiChoice Africa is focused on entertaining audiences all over Africa with the current Big Brother franchises; BB Titans, Mzansi and Naija. Though we have no immediate plans to have a Big Brother Botswana in the future, we are continuously looking at ways to entertain our Botswana audience with local content and we are excited for what’s to come in the next few weeks from our country.”

Continue Reading