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Genital warts prevalence rates high among young females in Botswana

Genital warts are one of the most common forms of sexually-transmitted diseases, but their epidemiology has yet to be thoroughly elucidated. This sexually transmitted infection (STI) is passed on through vaginal, anal and rarely through oral sex.

Genital warts are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) and affect both women and men but women are more vulnerable to complications. They are different from the high-risk strains that can lead to cervical dysplasia and cancer. These warts can be treated, but they can come back unless the underlying infection is also treated.

Health practitioners say these warts aren’t always visible to the human eye. They may be very small and can be the colour of one’s skin or slightly darker. The top of the growths may resemble a cauliflower and may feel smooth or slightly bumpy to the touch. They may occur as a cluster of warts, or just one wart.Genital warts on males may appear on the following areas: penis, scrotum, groin, thighs or inside or around the  anus. For females these warts may appear inside of the vagina or anus, outside of the vagina or anus or on the cervix.

According to a 2019 report from the STI Clinic in Gaborone, more women aged between 15 and 19 were diagnosed with genital warts, as compared to males of the same age bracket. The STI Clinic monthly report of January 2019 indicates that the number of new female clients diagnosed with genital warts stood at 43 as compared to 19 of males who visited the clinic in the same month.That very same month, only two females aged between zero and fourteen had the STI, as compared to zero for boys.

Females aged over 30 years who identified with the virus were 31, while males of the same age were only 18.However, as a way of curbing this virus, over 4000 condoms were issued in the same month, 18 clients did Pap smear while 53 did not do the test.The report further indicated that, in February 2019 over 74 females tested for genital warts and 50 aged between 15 and 29 were diagnosed with the infection, while only 13 males were detected. Those over 30 years and diagnosed with the infection were only 18.

At least 41 adolescent girls in March were diagnosed with the STI, and only 10 males had the infection. The following month of April saw 39 girls of the same age group (15-29) diagnosed with genital warts as compared to 11 males of the same age. However, over three thousand condoms were issued, and two referrals were made. The number of girls who did not have a Pap smear test were 50, against 21 who did the test.It was further shared that in April, 13 males did the Safe Male Circumcision (SMC) and the same number did not do the operation.

In March, at least 21 did the SMC while 15 did not go for the operation.Furthermore, in May 2019, 37 young girls were diagnosed with genital warts and only 12 of their male counterparts had the infection. The report stressed that 21 women over the age of 30 years were detected with the virus. In the next month, at least 37 young girls were diagnosed with genital warts, as compared to 13 of their male counterparts.  Pap smear tests were conducted on over 23 women, while 46 did not do the tests. The clinic issued over 2000 condoms while 9 males undertook circumcision.

September saw more women identified with genital warts unlike any other month. The number of young girls recorded were 52, an increase of 9 more cases from the previous month August. Only 19 young boys were found with the infection. Further, 23 women aged over 30 were diagnosed with genital wards for the month under review. There were 4 cases where clients did not know their HIV status, and over 60 women did not do the Pap smear. The number of young girls with genital warts was lowered to 44 in the following month.

The months of November and December saw a decline in the number of young girls with genital warts. In November, only 32 girls had the infection, while 13 males were diagnosed. The following month saw the number increase by 1 to become 33 for young girls aged between 15 and 29 years.Meanwhile, close to two thousand women of all ages suffered from vaginal discharge syndrome in January 2019. The number reduced to 1459 in February, and further peaked in the following month to settle at 1589. The number increased to 1606 in April, and saw a dramatic increase to 1811 in the following month.
However, in June 2019, only 1323 women had vaginal discharge and the number further decreased to 1141 in July. 

The report further said in August, over one thousand seven hundred (1 700) women suffered from the syndrome, a number that fell by over one thousand three hundred (1 300) in September. October registered 1974 women with vaginal discharge than any other month, and the number abridged to 1442 in November, and further saw a reduction to 1291 in December, the least number of cases recorded the entire year.


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‘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

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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.

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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.”


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.


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.


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.”


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.”

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