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Creatives plead for support of local talent

Kgomotso Tshwenyego

After using a South African comedian to advertise their work, local creatives and Batswana at large came out with guns blazing at Botswana Power Corporations (BPC) for importing talent whilst there are artists locally who could have been employed to do the job.

Considering the fact that novel COVID-19 has also impacted the country’s creative industry, the miscalculated move by BPC was the straw that broke the camel’s back as Batswana had enough of importation of talent. Known for her lengthy period in the arts industry, life coach, author and actor, Kgomotso Tshwenyego wrote;

“The film and entertainment industry is hard hit by this lockdown, artists don’t have jobs. Artists are home and are jobless. Cameras have piled up dust and scripts are just pieces of paper in drawers. Actors are not receiving those much needed calls for jobs. Hearts are bruised and hurt because like the rest of Batswana, creatives are also dying of hunger,” she said.

“They are hoping that somethings comes out so that they can survive too, guess what! A big corporation that took advantage of the pandemic and increased their tariffs with more than 20%, took it upon themselves to rub it in. They hired a South African to do an advert, and they do not take chances with their craft they charge, the fact that the video is out means he was fully paid,” she lamented.

She further lashed out at BPC for undermining local talent; “Congratulations BPC for spitting in the face of Botswana entertainment industry. Thank you for coming out loud and clear that you praise others and shun your own,” she stated.

Local comedian, Monna O Motona also cried of being bound by the pandemic as his content is monetized. He also shunned BPC for importing talent.

“What BPC did is so uncalled for, our content is better than South African comedians, numbers don’t lie, I have more numbers on Facebook than that comedian who was used by BPC, I have videos reaching up to million views on social media, they need to give local comedians first priority, we are trending, Batswana relate well with our content, we know what Batswana want. Use us, empower us please, we want to grow our industry,” he said.

He also admitted that it has been tough for him ever since the lockdown. “As a comedian I make a living by creating video adverts for start up companies and individual businesses and post them on my Facebook page because I have a huge following and viewership on my Facebook page.

But now COVID-19 has shut down everything, we need the government to assist us because people need us in this pandemic, we entertain people every day on our platforms, and our videos do help to relieve people from depression in these hard times. It’s hard for me because it’s costly to produce a whole video and it’s also expensive to maintain a Facebook page like mine, it’s a self-sponsored page,” he said.

In a press release, BPC regrets the video and seeks to atone for their sin against Batswana and the entertainment industry. “The video is not in line with our Citizen Economic Empowerment regulations and the necessary measures to address this breach will be taken. The video in question has been withdrawn.

The Corporation regrets the negative sentiments that this matter has given rise to and assures the Public of our commitment towards supporting and nurturing our citizen talent. We give our pledge that such incidents shall not be repeated and have put the necessary measures in place to ensure this. We thank you for your ongoing support to our business,” said the Chief Executive Officer of BPC Edward Rugoyi.


All roads lead to Francistown for ATI’s concert

18th May 2022

Organisers of the much anticipated As One Music Concert say preparation for the much awaited as one of the music concert are at the peak, with ticket and merchandise sales at a high just 13 days before the event.

In a statement Kesego Okie, Managing Director of Blue Skies PR Agency and event coordinator “The Concert is a celebration of ATI’s journey in music. It is also an incredible platform for all stakeholders, particularly businesses that operate in Francistown, to show their commitment to the resuscitation of the City’s economy following the impact of Covid.

We are grateful for the reception by the city leadership and look forward to cooperate Francistown heeding our call to support the arts, which would in turn, be supporting many livelihoods and small business in the area”.

She expressed gratitude to the public for their immense support evidenced by ticket sales and talk ability, saying this is testimony that indeed As One the nation can go fa in the true spirit of boipelego (self-reliance).

The concert is partnership between Batho Bame Investment and Blue Skies PR Agency. “A lot of work has gone in to prepare for the highlight, and I am thankful to everyone who believes in the dream and supports us. I promise nothing but the very best of me and would love to express my utmost gratitude to all creatives and businesses that are a part of this Journey” Atasaone ATI Molemogi.

The concert will be the first music show taking place within the main pitch of the Obed Itani Chilume Stadium, which was chosen to host because of its distinct state of art ambiance, coupling Francistown’s position as a gate way to many strategic places in Botswana.

Francistown is not only rich in history, but also an enabler for economic activity for unearthed tourist destination surrounding it. It is an honour to have been given the approval by the city leadership and the people of Francistown to host this Concert in their backyard’ ATI.

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AMVCAs To Host Hollywood Stars At 8th Edition

18th May 2022

As part of activities for the 8th edition of Africa’s most prestigious award ceremony, the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards (AMVCAs), Africa Magic in association with MultiChoice Nigeria will host celebrity movie stars and film directors from Hollywood ahead of the awards ceremony taking place on Saturday, 14 May in Lagos.

The visiting Hollywood stars will be led by Tasha Smith, actress, director and producer, known for her role in the acclaimed films, ‘Why Did I Get Married?’ and its sequel, ‘Why Did I Get Married, Too?’. She will be joined by Bayo Akinfemi, a cast member of the popular television series, ‘Bob Hearts Abishola’ as well as Brandon Micheal Hall of the ‘God Friended Me’ series fame

Also expected are Sidra Smith, award-winning Producer and Head of Essence’s Film and TV Studio and Grant Housley, Hollywood Producer, Writer and Director currently at Paramount Pictures, where he has worked on some of the biggest films and most critically acclaimed television series in the world.

While in Nigeria, the stars will meet with the #AMVCA8 nominees and other industry stakeholders. This historic visit is in line with MultiChoice and Africa Magic’s efforts in sustaining the Africa film making and storytelling momentum, through deliberate global collaboration.

The eighth edition of the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards is brought to viewers by Africa Magic in association with MultiChoice and is proudly sponsored by Amstel Malta.
For more information, visit and follow all official handles of Africa Magic on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #AMVCA8

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Of Musicians and No Shows

10th May 2022
Musicians and No Shows

There is a growing unpleasant of artists who do not pitch for events they have been booked for; or simultaneously, there could be another development – false advertising – where artists’ names are used to draw large crowds.

Musicians and promoters in their mission to put bread on the table seem to have resorted to obscene means of securing their means. To many, this is tantamount to fraud and deception to gain an unfair advantage over their unsuspecting fans who swoon at the mention of their name, their presence and entire existence.

The month of May has just begun and bottomless grievances are pouring in of no show musicians at gigs they have been booked and paid for. Instead of leaving the crowd stunned by a spectacular show they are leaving revellers disappointed.

Exhibit A; This past weekend Eswatini’s DJ Uncle Waffles was scheduled to perform in Botswana. She never pitched up for the shows and continues to be silent on her lack of presence at the show. Exhibit B; Maphorisa, Kabza De Small and Sha Sha were all set to perform on 29 April at the Victoria Falls Carnival 10th Anniversary but did not arrive in Zambia for the gig.

In a statement released on Sunday 1 May, Victoria Falls Carnival organisers confirmed that flights and accommodation were organised for DJ Maphorisa, Kabza De Small and Sha Sha.
The statement continued; “Confirmations were sent to them as agreed and emails were sent to them several times before, for some reason they did not show up at the airport on the day of travel…

Above and beyond we tried to communicate with the artists to change the date of performance but still we could not get hold of them despite all the effort and all means of communication from our side,” Organisers have demanded that the artists refund them the full booking fee and the payments made for flights and accommodation

“All three artists were paid in full and contractually bound to perform at the Carnival, and accommodated at every corner with their numerous flight and accommodation change requests.” Adds the statement. Exhibit C; South African artist Prince Benza’s passport was confiscated by the Deputy Sheriffs pending payment for damages on breach of contract.

He was scheduled to perform at Mogobane on the 31st of December at the Reflector Music Festival but did not appear as well. He nabbed when he came into the country for a separate event.
The President of Botswana Entertainment Promoters Association (BEPA), Gilbert Seagile this week had his company; Gilbert Promotions registered in South Africa.

This puts him in an ideal spot to become an intermediary and help solve the feud between Botswana and South African artists and their no show at events.  Seagile emphasized that it’s not only international artists that miss events but even the local artists have the same tendencies. He elaborated that reasons for artists not pitching up are many amongst them ; breach of contracts , promoters not paying deposits and some can be natural like artist testing positive for Covid-19.

The BEPA president also indicated that fly-by-night promoters are also a concern as they do not follow the BEPA Code of conduct, “BEPA members are well coordinated, they have the code of conduct which guides them to do things accordingly. The government is pushing for promoters to join BEPA they have already started refusing with permits when one is not a member of BEPA.” he emphasized

Seagile said that the association is in talks with the South African Music Promoters Association (SAMPA) to provide protection of Botswana Promoters that when artists miss shows they can be able to rope in their lawyers in South Africa through SAMPA and Botswana through BEPA to compensate for losses incurred as a result of this exploitation.

He said another way of dealing with this matter is for Promoters to issue a contract to the artist as currently the norm is that the artist produces the contract to the promoter so this solution can help the promoters to protect themselves.

In an interview with Weekendlife, Superintendent Tumediso of Urban Police Station enunciated that matters of no show artists are normally reported by the promoter who normally comes as the complainant. The matter is then taken forward taking into consideration the evidence, this will in turn assist in determining on whether the case is theft, obtaining by false pretence or fraud.
When it is all said and done, revellers love musicians to hate them and hate them to love them. It is an unending toxic relationship which no one wants to pull away from.

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