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Barclays bank partners with BVI to improve livelihoods

BVI General Manager George Matlho

Barclays Bank of Botswana (BBB) and the Botswana Vaccine Institute (BVI) conducted a joint workshop at Mmokolodi on Tuesday 12th May 2015 to sensitise high level Government Officials and Heads of Missions and other stakeholders of the significance of the contributions of sustainable preventative control of animal diseases.


The workshop was aimed towards achieving the improvement of the rural livelihoods in the African continent. The primary focus was on the countries that comprise both the current and the future BVI markets as well as where BBB is currently providing its services to the existing market.

A large majority of African communities rely on agricultural livelihood. Livestock accounts for over 30% of agricultural GDP, offering opportunities for sustainable economic development, social well-being, food security and nutrition.


However, the prevalence of high impact infectious Trans-boundary Animal Diseases (TADs) such as foot and mouth disease is resulting in underperformance and subdued productivity within the agricultural sector. Such diseases also leave humans vulnerable to health risks reflected in the increase of diseases such as anthrax, rabies and TB, to name a few.


Officiating at the workshop BVI General Manager George Matlho said the project is in line with the Food and Agriculture Organisation and World Organisation for Animal Health (FAO/OIE) Global Framework that calls for greater control of trans-boundary diseases with the eventual goal of eradication, where possible.

Sub- Saharan Africa has experienced firsthand the devastating effects of diseases like foot and mouth on animal health and agricultural sectors. He said the collaboration between Barclays Bank Botswana and BVI demonstrates how private-public partnerships are vital to successfully tackle common cross-border challenges.


The demand for food and livestock products continues to grow exponentially with increased populations, providing an opportunity for Botswana and neighbouring countries to make a contribution towards global agricultural sustainability.


“The benefits that will arise from this effort are multidimensional as various socio-economic groups will be positively impacted. Beneficiaries range from small farmers who rely on their livestock for income, to livestock traders to the general public who will have peace of mind as they will be better protected against the effects of livestock-related diseases,” explained Barclays Bank Botswana Managing Director, Reinette van der Merwe.


Speaking on behalf of the Minister of Agriculture Patrick Ralotsia, Permanent Secretary Edmont Moabi said it was well known that Agriculture, particularly the animal resources sector contributes significantly to the social and economic sectors accounting for 30-50% of agricultural GDP. 

“More than 350 million people in Africa (1/3 of the continent population) depend directly on livestock for income and livelihood. It is a source of food and nutrition; hides and skins; fertilizer or manure; traction power and other raw materials. Animal derived foods (meat, milk, yoghurt, eggs and fish) contribute quality proteins, minerals and vitamins which are critical for child nutrition, cognitive development and health. The sector employs more than 70% of the population in the SADC region,” Moabi said.


He maintained that Botswana is a country which prides itself in livestock production; and trading in livestock and their products is as old as the nation itself.  The beef export market underpins the industry and is dependent on freedom from trans-boundary animal diseases (TAD’s) like FMD and CBPP.


The total cost of the project was in excess of P200 million, which was raised from Capital Markets. Barclays Bank was also a key partner in this capital raising exercise ensuring availability of funds for the construction of the laboratory. This mode of financing also allowed BVI to further contribute to the development of local Capital Markets and investments.

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Self-taught fashion designer speaks

26th July 2022
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A job, lucrative or not, is a job after all. Sometimes one has to compromise in order to make a living, few people get a job their dream jobs. But once in a while there is an emergence of people who listen to their inner calling to pursue their passion.

The founder and head designer of Butterfly Couture, Chawa July is one of those few people who left their job to pursue their passion. An inspiring fact about July is that she is a self-taught fashion designer, she used to copy patterns from her old clothes until she learnt how to draw them, and she also searched information from the internet to increase her knowledge and skills.

“It all started as a hobby from my love for beautiful dresses and I started adjusting and making clothes for myself. Gradually people around me started to take interest in my craft and the hobby slowly grew into a profitable business,” July said.

The 41 year fashion designer from Molepolole worked her way up in the Procurement space for over 10 years. She worked at Stanbic Bank, Kromberg & Schubert and Clover Dairy as a Procurement supervisor. Her last job before she entered the fashion industry was a Manager for Contacts & Sourcing at a Facilities Management Company.

She established her fashion house in October 2019 and it has become synonyms with elegant wedding gowns and exquisite evening wear. July said when designing she is inspired by various aspects such as the client’s personality, the mood of the event and the theme. She further mentioned that every opportunity is to show her craft so she always aims to please.

“Every Butterfly Couture piece must represent the elegance and the creativity the brand is about,” she said. Butterfly Couture has adorned beauty queens; Miss Botswana 2021/2022 Ambrociah Samboko at Miss Universe in South Korea and Miss Botswana 2019,Oweditse Fafah Phirinyane during her reign of which is the highlight of her career. They have also marked their presence in a few fashion events locally and in the neighbouring countries.”

They showcased at The Grand Palm Wedding Expo, Masa Fashion Show, Miss Botswana Fashion Show and Sacunda plus Size Fashion Show. The will also be showcasing at Gabs July Fashion Show on the 15th of July alongside the South African designer, popularly known as the King of glamour David Tlale.

July also identified that one of the challenges they face in the couture is that, it’s a seasonal business. “There are times in the year when the business is great and challenging. Winter in particular, is difficult time to stay afloat as there aren’t as many events that people are inspired to dress spectacularly for,” she said. She further said that her aim is to be a prime couturier of choice in Botswana.

“Craft like your life depends on it because every happy client is 10 more referrals” is what she said when asked to serve a word of wisdom to people hoping to make it in the fashion industry.

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WeekendLife

Gospel awards re-organised

26th July 2022
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The Botswana Gospel Music Awards (BOGMA) and the Annual Gospel Awards (AGA) are said to be no longer in existence and a joint venture project has been put up that will carry out the awarding of gospel musicians.

The new entity has been established as Gospel Music Awards, which is a project at this moment is nearer to dishing out the first Gospel Awards under the leadership of the dissolved entities (BOGMA and AGA). “The difference is the same, it is just that the two projects were run by different minds which had differing objectives,” said the project coordinator, Letsweletse Moshabi when asked what the difference was between the two previous awards.

He added that at this junction their focus is on the future of the gospel musicians and they would like to direct their energies to the new project and forgo the past projects. “The Music market especially the gospel genre is too small and that basically means the very small market was experiencing the imbalance in the supply and demand forces. At that stage, supply was more than the demand so the reason for the joint forces is to allow the supply and demand forces to readjust and form equilibrium,” added Moshabi.

The mandate and objectives of the project are to recognize and award gospel music talent, to create awareness of the Botswana gospel music industry and to create a platform where fellow musicians may exchange ideas and network amongst themselves and approach international markets in cohesion.

The first of these joint awards will be held on the 27th August 2022 at Molapo Showcase under the theme ‘Cohesiveness to Build’ where about 18 categories will be up for grabs.

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Makhadzi, Master KG invade Thamaga

18th July 2022
Makhadzi,-Master-KG-invade-Thamaga

The Kumnandi Ekhaya musik festival will be held on the 30th September 2022 at Thamaga village. The event coincides with the release of famous host, Dj Ngwazi’s first album called ‘spring day’ on the 2nd of September 2022.

The Thamaga born and raised Lefika Lushen Kebatlege is a disc jockey and a music producer signed under WanitwaMos Entertainment in South Africa. Famously known as Dj Ngwazi and formally known as DJ superstar, he has really worked hard to become one of the finest export DJs the country has produced. Internationally, he is described as a DJ from South African because of his works with popular music artist Master KG.

Meanwhile, the music festival will feature South African artists, Makhazi, Master KG, Prince Benza and Mthunzi. They will also be joined by some of the big local artists, Franco, Vee Mampeezy, among others.  “The tickets of the concert will be available at Spar stores, webticket and Kings bar. There will be three categories for VIP tickets, the one that goes for P1000, P1500 and P2200,” said the Kumnandi Ekhaya musik fest promoter Sadie Swartz of Saysay Entertainment.

“We have a new system to tackle the cry of promoters about security at the events. We will have a team of 100 security men, 10 horses and 15 dogs. We also agreed with the police to help with traffic control and no tickets will be sold at the gate to avoid circulation of money which can attract thieves,” said Kagiso Gaodumelwe from All Night Security.

“I started deejaying back in the days when I was still schooling at Kagiso Senior School and I never stopped working towards my career since then. I have a career in South Africa, since 2018 when Master KG took me in and his support as a brother has taken me to places,” said DJ Ngwazi describing his career journey.

“Kumnandi Ekhaya is Zulu language which means ‘go monate ko gae’ in Setswana. The name came about as a way of inviting my South African fans and supporters to my home village Thamaga to come experience the joy that comes with celebrating our freedom and independence. I used isiZulu because it’s the dominant language in South Africa,” explained Dj Ngwazi.

“The concert will be held in an open space which was used for agricultural purposes and we would like to call it ‘Ko Legoleng’. With this concert I want to redeem the dignity of our village because we once had the cases of youth who were terrorizing the community, beating up people in the streets and stealing and these was really a concern in our community because they were tarnishing the village name,” said Dj Ngwazi.

The purpose of this concert is to empower the community of Thamaga and local artist, more especially artist from Thamaga village like, Kgabo Sereto traditional group. There will be a litter picking campaign around the village before the launch of the concert .The sponsors which are already on board are Dladleng Entertainment and Kings bar and there are still more sponsors to be revealed.

”As the Kumnandi Ekhaya musik fest management, we are going to buy food combos and take them to Thamaga village Kgotla so they can be donated to the less privileged and orphans. Starting from October we will be donating pads to all Junior Schools in Thamaga,” said Dj Ngwazi. Dj Ngwazi’s motivational words to other artist and everyone else; work hard, be patient and be determined.

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