There is a popular quote by an unknown author that says, “People come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. Once you figure out which it is, then you know exactly what to do.” I found myself reflecting on this saying when news of the passing of Christine Ndu Ramakhubu-Lempaletse broke out. I must confess that I hardly knew Christine except that she is a very close friend’s sister and that she had just recently signed up for Bitcoin mining with our team, The Dream Team. However, in our brief encounter a lot of the strong, focused, determined, avant-garde character her sister often spoke about, came through.
The Dream Team is an offshoot of Crypto-Giants which is an affiliate of AchieversKlub (ACK) digital currency entrepreneurs from across the world. The group has come together to explore the great new business and investment opportunities presented by the emerging decentralized digital currency or cryptocurrency known as Bitcoin using the BitClub Network business model.
Established in 2014, BitClub Network is a global wealth creating company for the digital currency market. The distribution network helps its members participate in the blockchain technology and accumulate digital assets such as Bitcoin. By combining a crowd funded mining pool with the power of an affiliate payment structure, BitClub Network presents an exceptional opportunity for members to leverage their earning potential unlike any other investors in this space. BitClub Network allows its members to build a global business using its attractive affiliate marketing opportunity.
Christine’s enrollment into the BitClub Networking fold was a classic example of what most of us go through with our investments and pension schemes. We all know the drill, the mantra is repeated incessantly throughout our schooling and working life, “Whatever you do, put aside some money and prepare for life after retirement!” American businessman and author Robert Kiyosaki put the retirement concept more bluntly for the young and ambitious in his book, “Retire young, retire rich!”
When it came to retirement planning, Christine did everything by the book. The 56 year old retired school head worked diligently her entire life to ensure that she had a tidy sum put aside for life after work and her dependents inheritance in the event of her death. However, after 25 years of loyal and distinguished service to the noble profession, Christine received an unpleasant awakening by the contraction of her pension payout. As has become a reality for all who have reached retirement stage, what she received after all the years of saving for her retirement was way less than what she expected.
The situation had been made worse by the fact that her pension fund, the Botswana Public Officers Pension Fund (BPOPF), has been marred by controversy in recent years, “most ranging from political interference, corruption and other forms of maladministration.” BPOPF is the third largest pension fund in Africa with an asset value worth over P55 billion, and bigger than Botswana’s entire banking sector.
Coincidently, it was at this stage of her life that The Dream Team presented the BitClub Network business and investment opportunity to Christine. In a strange turn of events, The Dream Team’s pitch to Christine happened amidst the deafening noise of a speculative Bitcoin bubble by crypto skeptics and naysayers. Nonetheless, the nonconformist she was, she refused to be swayed by the prevailing pessimistic commotion.
Christine was a rear breed, a discerning, headstrong and open-minded individual who had an entrepreneurial streak in her genetic makeup and did not sheepishly follow the flock. When presented with the BitClub Networks opportunity of, ‘prosperity in the second era of the internet,’ she did not hide her initial apprehension of the technology but still proceeded to ask hard and pointed questions about the networking company’s digital assets and how this could benefit her and her dependents.
In spite of the uncertainties and the bleak outlook painted by the deceitful gang of crypto-pessimists, Christine conducted her own due diligence, and once she was satisfied with the responses she was given, she overcame her earlier anxieties about the technology and signed up to become one of the earlier members of The Dream Team. She refused to listen to the delusional chorus of crypto-bashers who are fighting the disruptive power of digital currencies that threaten the conventional financial system and its world currency dominance. As soon as she was converted, Christine became a staunch and enthusiastic crypto evangelist. She was quick to adopt to the new technologies and position herself to benefit from the opportunities presented by the BitClub Network franchise.
A committed Christian and seasoned business woman who dabbled in farming, Christine assumed her BitClub Network membership with immense passion, dedication and determination to succeed. At the time she lived in Gaborone West with her twin brother, Christopher Lempaletse and held a senior position, Mma Mookami at The Holy Bontle Apostolic Church in Zion. She had immediately drawn up a long list of prospects she intended to introduce to the business.
The list comprised of individuals from family, friends, acquaintances, church members and former colleagues from her long and illustrious service in the teaching profession. The consummate professional she was, Christine had also immediately ordered business cards to give her business networking enterprise some professional flair and authenticity. In a tragic turn of events, Christine was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer soon after her enrollment into BitClub Network.
Her condition rapidly deteriorated thereafter and after fierce battle with the disease, she sadly succumbed to it on the 16th of October, 2018. Her body was laid to rest at her ancestral home in Sebina on 21st October. The true crypto convert she was, Christine left a Will that all her three children and three grandchildren be bequeathed with BitClub Network mining Pools (Shares) as a lasting and impactful legacy of her love and care for them. Set at appropriate repurchase percentages, the partial share purchase of the mining Pools assures her dependents a lifetime of uninterrupted mining and daily earnings of Bitcoin mining dividends.
As I reflect on the adage that says, “People come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime,” it becomes clear that the brief but impactful instance when Christine’s life crossed with mine demonstrates that it is not late to invest in Bitcoin. Our paths crossed because of Bitcoin and despite the inordinate barriers she faced in the uptake of this ground-breaking technology she prevailed. Bitcoin continues to thrive despite an elaborate smear campaign that calls the digital asset a, “Ponzi scheme, a scam and a financial and asset bubble that is about to burst.”
Award winning business and photojournalist, Jay Caboz writes that, “we live in a world where there are prevailing prejudicial attitudes towards older people and that this discrimination and stereotyping views the elderly as dependent, non-contributing members of society who are averse to technology.” He says that in the developing world, especially in Africa, so strong is the stereotype of elderly digital dunce that the ageist perception has often become a self-fulfilling prophesy that reinforces the myth that the elderly are not only technologically fearful but also technologically challenged and incompetent.
However, while the mind-blowing technological advances of the fourth industrial revolution are purported to have left many Baby Boomers and the Generation X cohorts in absolute awe and many more quite simply overwhelmed, I find the speed and passion with which Christine disabused herself of the crypto bashers misinformation commendable and her investment in Bitcoin inspiring for those considered to be technology fearful and, “late adaptors who struggle to keep up with the pace and scale of change in the digital age.” Christine dispelled the erroneous and misplaced perceptions that suggest that her generation is fearful and show a low adjustment to the advent of new technologies.
In the end, Christine proved to be a technologically astute, shrewd and decisive business woman. She was able to outsmart the current financial system which robbed her of her life savings through corruption, mismanagement and attrition of returns in pension funds. She was quick to see the promise of the Bitcoin revolution to, “bring more of the worlds population out of poverty than anything we have ever witnessed before.” She is counted among the country’s early Bitcoin adopters, a game-changing pensioner who defied the odds and embraced technology long before its benefits were obvious to many.
She was among the first of her contemporaries to see the blockchain technology as, “the grand connector and value-adding novelty and opportunity creator in the economic and social spheres of our lives.” She is the celebrated champion of the world’s first digital currency. Christine is the Bitcoin royalty who bequeathed her children with Bitcoin, the world’s most prolific digital asset and the fastest global currency.
She left her children a consummate inheritance, a truly lasting legacy of daily Bitcoin earnings for the rest of their lives. An asset that is better than the traditional assets such as cattle which is labour intensive; cash which is fast losing its value; commodities with their inflated expectations; and real estate which remains illiquid. Christine’s Bitcoin legacy will be handed down from generation to generation, compounding an enduring generational wealth for her descendants and ensuring them a better quality of life. Christine is survived by 3 children, 3 grandchildren, her mother and 15 siblings. May her soul rest in peace.
Seventy-seven years ago, on the evening of December 2, 1943, the Germans launched a surprise air raid on allied shipping in the Italian port of Bari, which was then the key supply centre for the British 8th army’s advance in Italy.
The attack was spearheaded by 105 Junkers JU88 bombers under the overall command of the infamous Air Marshal Wolfram von Richthofen (who had initially achieved international notoriety during the Spanish Civil War for his aerial bombardment of Guernica). In a little over an hour the German aircraft succeeded in sinking 28 transport and cargo ships, while further inflicting massive damage to the harbour’s facilities, resulting in the port being effectively put out of action for two months.
Over two thousand ground personnel were killed during the raid, with the release of a secret supply of mustard gas aboard one of the destroyed ships contributing to the death toll, as well as subsequent military and civilian casualties. The extent of the later is a controversy due to the fact that the American and British governments subsequently covered up the presence of the gas for decades.
At least five Batswana were killed and seven critically wounded during the raid, with one of the wounded being miraculously rescued floating unconscious out to sea with a head wound. He had been given up for dead when he returned to his unit fourteen days later. The fatalities and casualties all occurred when the enemy hit an ammunition ship adjacent to where 24 Batswana members of the African Pioneer Corps (APC) 1979 Smoke Company where posted.
Thereafter, the dozen surviving members of the unit distinguished themselves for their efficiency in putting up and maintaining smokescreens in their sector, which was credited with saving additional shipping. For his personal heroism in rallying his men following the initial explosions Company Corporal Chitu Bakombi was awarded the British Empire Medal, while his superior officer, Lieutenant N.F. Moor was later given an M.B.E.
Remember: bricks and cement are used to build a house, but mutual love, respect and companionship are used to build a HOME. And amongst His signs is this: He creates for you mates out of your own kind, so that you may find contentment (Sukoon) with them, and He engenders love and tenderness between you; in this behold, there are signs (messages) indeed for people who reflect and think (Quran 30:21).
This verse talks about contentment; this implies companionship, of their being together, sharing together, supporting one another and creating a home of peace. This verse also talks about love between them; this love is both physical and emotional. For love to exist it must be built on the foundation of a mutually supportive relationship guided by respect and tenderness. As the Quran says; ‘they are like garments for you, and you are garments for them (Quran 2:187)’. That means spouses should provide each other with comfort, intimacy and protection just as clothing protects, warms and dignifies the body.
In Islam marriage is considered an ‘ibaadah’, (an act of pleasing Allah) because it is about a commitment made to each other, that is built on mutual love, interdependence, integrity, trust, respect, companionship and harmony towards each other. It is about building of a home on an Islamic foundation in which peace and tranquillity reigns wherein your offspring are raised in an atmosphere conducive to a moral and upright upbringing so that when we all stand before Him (Allah) on that Promised Day, He will be pleased with them all.
Most marriages start out with great hopes and rosy dreams; spouses are truly committed to making their marriages work. However, as the pressures of life mount, many marriages change over time and it is quite common for some of them to run into problems and start to flounder as the reality of living with a spouse that does not meet with one’s pre-conceived ‘expectations’. However, with hard work and dedication, couples can keep their marriages strong and enjoyable. How is it done? What does it take to create a long-lasting, satisfying marriage?
Below are some of the points that have been taken from a marriage guidance article I read recently and adapted for this purposes.
POSITIVITY Spouses should have far more positive than negative interactions. If there is too much negativity — criticizing, demanding, name-calling, holding grudges, etc. — the relationship will suffer. However, if there is never any negativity, it probably means that frustrations and grievances are not getting ‘air time’ and unresolved tension is accumulating inside one or both partners waiting to ‘explode’ one day.
“Let not some men among you laugh at others: it may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): nor let some women laugh at others: it may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): nor defame nor be sarcastic to each other, nor call each other by (offensive) nicknames.” (49:11)
We all have our individual faults though we may not see them nor want to admit to them but we will easily identify them in others. The key is balance between the two extremes and being supportive of one another. To foster positivity in a marriage that help make them stable and happy, being affectionate, truly listening to each other, taking joy in each other’s achievements and being playful are just a few examples of positive interactions. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “The believers who show the most perfect faith are those who have the best character and the best of you are those who are best to their wives”
Another characteristic of happy marriages is empathy; understanding your spouses’ perspective by putting oneself in his or her shoes. By showing that understanding and identifying with your spouse is important for relationship satisfaction. Spouses are more likely to feel good about their marriage and if their partner expresses empathy towards them. Husbands and wives are more content in their relationships when they feel that their partners understand their thoughts and feelings.
Successful married couples grow with each other; it simply isn’t wise to put any person in charge of your happiness. You must be happy with yourself before anyone else can be. You are responsible for your actions, your attitudes and your happiness. Your spouse just enhances those things in your life. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “Treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers.”
Successful marriages involve both spouses’ commitment to the relationship. The married couple should learn the art of compromise and this usually takes years. The largest parts of compromise are openness to the other’s point of view and good communication when differences arise.
When two people are truly dedicated to making their marriage work, despite the unavoidable challenges and obstacles that come, they are much more likely to have a relationship that lasts. Husbands and wives who only focus on themselves and their own desires are not as likely to find joy and satisfaction in their relationships.
Another basic need in a relationship is each partner wants to feel valued and respected. When people feel that their spouses truly accept them for who they are, they are usually more secure and confident in their relationships. Often, there is conflict in marriage because partners cannot accept the individual preferences of their spouses and try to demand change from one another. When one person tries to force change from another, he or she is usually met with resistance.
However, change is much more likely to occur when spouses respect differences and accept each other unconditionally. Basic acceptance is vital to a happy marriage. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “It is the generous (in character) who is good to women, and it is the wicked who insults them.” “Overlook (any human faults) with gracious forgiveness.” (Quran 15:85)
COMPASSION, MUTUAL LOVE AND RESPECT
Other important components of successful marriages are love, compassion and respect for each other. The fact is, as time passes and life becomes increasingly complicated, the marriage is often stressed and suffers as a result. A happy and successful marriage is based on equality. When one or the other dominates strongly, intimacy is replaced by fear of displeasing.
It is all too easy for spouses to lose touch with each other and neglect the love and romance that once came so easily. It is vital that husbands and wives continue to cultivate love and respect for each other throughout their lives. If they do, it is highly likely that their relationships will remain happy and satisfying. Move beyond the fantasy and unrealistic expectations and realize that marriage is about making a conscious choice to love and care for your spouse-even when you do not feel like it.
Seldom can one love someone for whom we have no respect. This also means that we have to learn to overlook and forgive the mistakes of one’s partner. In other words write the good about your partner in stone and the bad in dust, so that when the wind comes it blows away the bad and only the good remains.
Paramount of all, marriage must be based on the teachings of the Noble Qur’an and the teachings and guidance of our Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). To grow spiritually in your marriage requires that you learn to be less selfish and more loving, even during times of conflict. A marriage needs love, support, tolerance, honesty, respect, humility, realistic expectations and a sense of humour to be successful.
The past week or two has been a mixed grill of briefs in so far as the national employment picture is concerned. BDC just injected a further P64 million in Kromberg & Schubert, the automotive cable manufacturer and exporter, to help keep it afloat in the face of the COVID-19-engendered global economic apocalypse. The financial lifeline, which follows an earlier P36 million way back in 2017, hopefully guarantees the jobs of 2500, maybe for another year or two.
It was also reported that a bulb manufacturing company, which is two years old and is youth-led, is making waves in Selibe Phikwe. Called Bulb Word, it is the only bulb manufacturing operation in Botswana and employs 60 people. The figure is not insignificant in a town that had 5000 jobs offloaded in one fell swoop when BCL closed shop in 2016 under seemingly contrived circumstances, so that as I write, two or three buyers have submitted bids to acquire and exhume it from its stage-managed grave.