Items filtered by date: Tuesday, 04 December 2018 - Botswana Guardian
Tuesday, 04 December 2018 17:43

IAAF in major anti-doping shakedown

The Botswana Athletics Association (BAA) and its counterparts elsewhere will suffer the consequence of their  players’ violation of Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) ethical standards, following the revised anti-doping rules by the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF).

Earlier this month the AIU announced the categorisation of the National Federations under the new Article 15 of the IAAF Anti -Doping Rules, which was previously approved by IAAF council in July. According to a recent AIU press release, the rules put in place an advance framework for the fight against doping in athletics.  The new rules will hold IAAF affiliates accountable if their athletes test positive for banned substances.

The previous arrangement saw individual athletes face the wrath of the IAAF on their own when they tested positives. The BAA recently experienced high profile doping cases that included 400m women runners Amantle Montsho and Lydia Jele. “The new rule, which comes into force from January 2019 makes National Federations accountable for assisting in the fight against doping and  for ensuring appropriate ant-doping measures are in place in their respective jurisdictions. Obligations under the previous IAAF Anti-Doping rules largely rested with individuals, while the obligations of the

National Federation are themselves limited,” reads a press release from the AIU. “Under the new rules, National Federations are categorised annually by the AIU board in three different categories being A, B and C-according to the factors that have been considered for determining the doping risk to the sport (category A having the highest doping risk to the sport and Category C being the lowest).” 

Botswana is currently in category B.
Furthermore, the AIU states that National Federations are subject to a set of general obligations that are imposed on all Federations and to a set of specific obligations that are imposed on each category of federation.
“Improving the integrity of athletics requires a collaborative effort from the entire industry and these new rules ensure that National Federations who send teams to represent them at international events are playing their part,” said AIU Chairman David Howman. “It is important to remember that the categorisation that   reflects the risk to the sport from doping in each jurisdiction and such risk may exist for many reasons. This innovative rule will help ensure lasting and meaningful change in athletics and make sure the public confidence in the integrity of the sport is maintained.”

In addition, Howman said the implementation of the rules will give athletes assurance that anti-doping obligations no longer fall on them alone. Meanwhile, a source close to the matter said the BAA   and other National Federations should be taking responsibility   of anti-doping and not relying on organisations like the Botswana National Olympic Committee (BNOC) regarding the matter.

“The National Federation should now take responsibility and it will be interesting to see how they rise to the occasion. The problem is that Botswana has world class athletes but they do not have world class sports administrators,” said a source who spoke on condition of anonymity.“We recently had a doping case of 400m runner Lydia Jele and she is unlikely to be the last athlete who tests positive. We have up and coming young athletes   and they will need a lot of support in this regard.” The source further said National Federation budgetary provision   will have to cater for anti-doping following the AIU announcement.

“In most cases, National Federations seek sponsorship for competitions only but now they will have to include a budget for anti-doping so that they promote clean sports. The IAAF is also under pressure as their sponsors demand to promote clean sports. This means the IAAF will put their affiliates under pressure and National Federations will ensure that their clubs comply.”

For his part the BAA spokesperson, Ipolokeng Ramatshaba said he is yet to familiarise himself with the revised AIU anti-doping rules. Nevertheless, Ramatshaba said he is aware that the IAAF has placed countries in three categories to consider their doping risk. I am aware that Botswana is in category B. According to Ramatshaba, the BAA is ready and   compelled to address doping issues, adding that they have been educating local athletes on the matter.

Published in Sports

Alec Egleton of the Police VI men’s volleyball team walked away with the Most Valuable Player award at the 2018 Mascom Volleyball league awards in Gaborone this past Wednesday. The glamorous evening saw Gaoleseletse Gasekgonwe of Mag Stimela winning the Most Valuable Player in the women’s category.

The awards are meant to celebrate and honour athletes and administrators that did well during the 2018 Mascom national volleyball league. The 2018 league came to an end last month with Police VI and Mag- Stimela was crowned champions in the male and ladies side respectively.

The night saw Police VI dominating in the men’s category having won in three categories including Best Blocker (Moemedi Siphambe), Best Server (Phenyo Thebeng) while the MPV went to Egleton. The night saw Phemelo Lekoko winning the Best Attacker prize for Kalavango.

The Palapye based outfit Mag Stimela dominated the women’s category with the Best Attacker Category going to Gaoleseletse Gasekgongwe winning both the Best Attacker and Best Server award. The Mafolofolo ladies team walked away with two individual awards with Kelebogile Mahupela winning the Best Setter award and Gontle Goirwang scooping the Best Libero.

The Best Blocker award went to Tshiamo Chakalisa of Kutlwano.

Kalavango could not afford to be left behind, registering three on both sides and making it six nominees for the club. BDF VI also had five from the men and one from the ladies while the Mafolofolo ladies reduced their numbers to five when their male counterparts failed to make it in the nominees list.

In other categories Maboka Molefi of Mag Stimela won Best Coach in the women’s category while Shimaka Ngwanaotsile took Best Coach in the men’s category.

Published in Sports
Tuesday, 04 December 2018 17:38

Senior Netball limps into Diamond Challenge

The 12 player senior netball team competing at the ongoing 2018 Diamond Challenge held in Sheshego South Africa is without certain key players, Tebogo Radipotsane, Pearl Maribe, Hildah Binang and Kgomotso Matibini among others.

When the Botswana Netball Association (BONA) announced the squad travelling to South Africa this week, it was said that the team was still waiting the release of certain players who are employed by Botswana Defence Force (BDF) and Police.
However, it is not clear if the players were finally released to represent the country in South Africa.

BONA spokesperson Theresa Hitcherfield could not be drawn into discussing the matter further when asked; however, an insider at BONA has told BG Sport that the players were not released by their employers.“It is hard to get athletes because the process goes through the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sports and Culture Development and the employers are said to be cross checking the productivity of the athlete before releasing them, it is a struggle,” said the source within BONA circles.

When reached, the Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) Sports Development Director- Technical, Bobby Gaseitsiwe said it was within the rights of employers to either agree or refuse to release employees. He said that there was no agreement or any law compelling them to always release players for national team duty, however they do encourage employers to excuse them when such need arises.“We normally work well together, such cases of employers not releasing athletes do not occur often,” he said. Meanwhile, in the absence of key players, the team started on a wrong footing at the Diamond Challenge. Botswana suffered a 30- 43 defeat to Zimbabwe in their opening match this past Tuesday.

The Seipei Gaelesiwe led team had tied their Zimbabwean counterparts at close margin and only two goals separated them in the first and second quarter, the local girls however began losing the grip of the game in the last two quarters of the game.
This Friday, the team is playing Namibia and it remains to be seen if they can manage to stage a comeback into the challenge. It is up to the ladies to wash away a series of poor results that have been haunting the local netball side.

Published in Sports
Tuesday, 04 December 2018 17:35

Bagwasi hopes for a rematch

DRAD boxing stable headcoach, Thebe Setlalekgosi says he is proud of his lightweight boxer, Kabelo Bagwasi who lost a 12 round match against Ayanda Nkosi of South Africa in Durban this past weekend.

Bagwasi’s team took a major risk and jumped from six to 12 rounds to challenger Nkosi for his Pan African WBA lightweight title. The fight held at the luxurious Sibaya Casino and Entertainment Kingdom saw Bagwasi going toe to toe with the much taller Nkosi for the first half of the match. It was past the seventh round that Nkosi’s experience, height and superior reach came into play. The jab kept the shorter Bagwasi at bay despite numerous flurries that often caught the defending champion.

By the time the fight reached the championship rounds, Bagwasi began showing signs of fatigue. In an interview this week, Setlalekgosi said they have learnt a lot from their first 12 round title shot. “Bagwasi managed to contain the champion for the first seven rounds. The boxers did not disappoint at all, it was just unfortunate that we lost,” he said.

Setlalekgosi also said the officials at Fox Africa Boxing were highly impressed by the local boxer despite the loss.“There is a possibility of a re-match but it will not be immediate as we need two or three more matches to correct some of our mistakes. We will need to sit down and rethink our options. I think Bagwasi will do much better at lightweight which is a weight down.”

Moreover, Setlalekgosi said he has been getting positive feedback from the local boxing fraternity. “Some of the former professional boxers said they were impressed by the young boxer.” Meanwhile, Setlalekgosi said three other DRAD boxers managed to win their international fights.

The boxers included Kutlwano Ogaketse who beat Paul Mangxilana in a six-round bout and Moabi Ngaka managed to beat Rirothe Randima in a four round featherweight encounter. The other bout saw Kagiso Bagwasi beating Kiabua Mafisi in a welterweight four rounder.

Published in Sports
Tuesday, 04 December 2018 16:45

Karate dogged by misfortunes

This past week, the Botswana Karate Association (BOKA) leadership announced there will be no 2018 Karate Club Championships this year.“Please note that that we have been advised not to have any events that clash with Region 5 Youth Games scheduled for next month, as such, BOKA Executive has taken a decision not to hold this year’s club championships,” the association spokesperson, Isaiah Ramontshonyane has announced.

When the seemingly devastated BOKA affiliates questioned how the decision came about, Ramontshonyane explained that they had no other option but to obey the instruction from Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) and cancel the club championships that were scheduled for the 8th December. He said that the instruction from BNSC was not only for BOKA to obey but all affiliates.“BNSC has blocked activities from the 3rd to the 16th December. We have thought about alternative dates however the 16th is far into the festive season and the 1st of December clashes with Commonwealth champs,” BOKA president Tshepo Bathai had added.

When reached this week, BNSC Sports Development Director-Technical Bobby Gaseitsiwe said they were not twisting any arm or suggesting that activities be cancelled by codes that are not directly affected, however affiliates should not disturb the youth games or come to BNSC asking for transportation services and the use of reserved facilities. What now remains questionable is why the BOKA executive was quick to cancel or was it the issue of their much-publicized empty coffers and they then found an excuse in BNSC? Clearly BNSC does not transport clubs to compete at club championships meaning there was no how BOKA could need BNSC transport services. Perhaps the venue could be the issue, given that the BOKA dojo is currently under construction however that too has nothing to do with BNSC or the Region 5 games.

Other codes such as Botswana Football Association (BFA) will still have the premier league running during the youth games and according to BFA Chief Executive Officer Mfolo Mfolo, BNSC has not advised them to pause their activities. He however, said they know that they cannot use the national stadium as it will be occupied during the youth games.

“The premier league is at club level, their games will continue because they are not a national team, this is a national event hence we advised that codes do not host activities that will be parallel to the games and divert the attention,” Gaseitsiwe explained.
It has been difficult for BOKA lately. This week, 22 athletes travelled to South Africa for the 2018 Commonwealth Karate Championships and all those 22 athletes had to pop out P7 500 from their own pockets to compete in South Africa.

Fortunate were those that managed to land small donations from local companies and schools. Even the former president of Botswana, Ian Khama rescued another stranded BOKA female athlete. Those who could not afford to raise the money were probably left behind since the association had long announced that it cannot afford the P 100 000 budget that came with participating in South Africa.

BOKA is also busy trying to plead with BNSC that they be allowed to host the 2019 UFAK Championships. BNSC has set its foot down and informed the association that it did not follow the hosting policy and ordered that all preparations be stopped immediately. With that, it will take a miracle for BOKA to host the championships next year.

Published in Sports
Tuesday, 04 December 2018 16:31

Eatery with a feel of West Africa

The fusion of two regions’ food, Southern and West Africa, make Jarateng Lounge stand out in the city with familiar but uniquely prepared meat dishes as well as West African soups ad stews. Operating under the tag line eat. smile. connect, the newly opened restaurant gives relaxation to the clients as they enjoy their meals over free WIFi.

General Manager at Jarateng Lounge, Lawrence Molosiwa says that the concept of the restaurant lies within making people experience the eat-away-home without necessarily feeling like they are at a restaurant. “Our two specific menus, West African menus and Pesonyana were meant for the food lovers to appreciate food however they want. This is to also cater for those people who are from West Africa or who just enjoy West African menu.” he said. He explained that each of their meals have different kinds of meat dishes including chicken, lamb, pork, and beef. He says they will soon introduce Game meat to their menu. They usually serve braai meat with pap or dumblings.

Hygiene is one of the priority key factors at Jarateng and Molosiwa tells BG Style that they serve freshly cooked food all the time and also take pre-orders to cater for their special meals. They also have draughts and cocktails for sale to compliment their meals. Molosiwa also tells BG Style that during the evenings, they allow their customers to chill at the restaurants with their own alcoholic beverages while in their business meetings or special anniversaries.

Asked where they get the West African food and ingredients from, he explained that they import cassava leaves from Johannesburg in South Africa as well as Obono and Toala from Sierra Leone. "There is part of West Africa in Jarateng and every resident can have a meal of their choice here,” reiterates Molosilwa.

Published in Style
Tuesday, 04 December 2018 16:27

Romantic Coffee warms hot beverage lovers

Launched four months ago, local company, Romantic Coffee has come up with a genius concept that will change the landscape of how clients of the hospitality industry see and enjoy their favourite coffee brews. The company, is in the business of roasting and packaging some of the finest and top quality arabica coffee beans from the best coffee bean makers in the world, including Ethiopia, Kenya, Brazil, Columbia and Honduras.

The brains behind the company are none other than Neo Mosimane and Jean-Marie Kabalisa.  Kabalisa originates from Rwanda/Burundi, and has been in Botswana for thirty years. Coming from a place that makes coffee, he always wished that Botswana too could have a locally produced coffee. This is how Romantics Coffee was born. But it took a while before he found the right partner who shared his vision.

He told this publication on Monday afternoon that Capello, where this interview took place, is one of their first clients. Other clients include Linga Longa, Dros and Black restaurant.  Kabalisa explains that he watches Formula 1 with Mosimane’s father and in one of the days they were talking about business, and how he was looking for a business partner. The rest as they say is history.

Once Mosimane was briefed about the business, she did some research, and instantly fell in love with the concept. The duo shares the same passion and love for coffee, and take the craft very seriously. Kabalisa explains that prior to meeting his business partner, he went around the local supermarket, and noticed that shelves were stocked with South African products. The raw material, however, were from the rest of Africa and outside the region.
“I was driven by the love to do something that comes from Botswana,” he explains.

He also reveals that they are now roasting and packaging their products in Botswana under the Brand Botswana endorsement. Romantics Coffee, as the name suggests is enticing and rich in flavour. The company recently participated at the annual Global Expo, where their stall was a hit with attendants. The aroma of coffee brewing attracted many to their stall. The company went on to win the Botswana Pride Award.

Mosimane explains that their first batch of coffee was the Popayan from Columbia. Besides the Popayan, the company is also trading with the following bean brands that include Santos (Brazil), Harrar and Sidamo (both from Ethiopia), Alom (Guatemala), SHG (Honduras), Type Blue mountain and Bold Bean Grinders Quality (Kenya), as well as AA Grade (Tanzania) and Bugisu (Uganda).

The duo takes their craft very seriously and are trained coffee connoisseurs; they use their experience and knowledge handed down from roasting veterans, coffee merchants and coffee farmers to roast their coffee beans in a manner that highlights their best qualities. They have also been trained on identifying beans that have body, acidity, and more.

“Our goal is to grow and export our products,” says Mosimane, noting that they have done well for a company that has been in operation for four months. They are busy courting other new clients and the future looks bright for them. “We have put in a lot of work in three months. Our focus is to deliver a high-quality product,” she says adding that they are up against established and big companies but are confident enough to compete.

She also explains that they offer training to the staff of their clients on how to express the perfect end product. “We are training them to improve their skills and want the end user to get exceptional product,” she says.

Published in Style
Tuesday, 04 December 2018 16:24

De Beers props diamond jewellery designers

De Beers 2018 Shinning Light Awards, an initiative that encourages young people from the De Beers countries; Botswana, South Africa, Namibia and Canada to become competitive jewellery designers, were recently launched in Gaborone, alongside this year’s Diamond Conference.

The competition has existed for over 22 years in South Africa and almost 10 years in Botswana and Namibia, and was only launched in Canada this year. Young people from these producer countries have been urged to enter the competition in order to make sure that they produce African made work using the precious stones. The winners will be honoured with an opportunity to participate in a 12-month apprenticeship programme in Milan, Italy while the runners-up will win a three-months internship program at Forevermark or a design programme at a local design school.

Head of Brand Strategy and Innovation at De Beers Forevermark, Constantino Papadimitriou said that this opportunity has always improved the young people’s lives; “Over the years, we have seen how the Shining Light Awards have presented students with a great opportunity to develop their skills in Jewellery manufacturing. We are looking forward to seeing the journey they take in interpreting the theme and bringing it to life,” he said.

Executive Vice President at De Beers Group and CEO of Forevermark, Stephen Lussier also added that the Shining Light Awards have proven to be a valuable design platform to showcase talent and open opportunities for young people within the diamond sector and international markets. “This is in-line with De Beers Group objectives on beneficiation through skills development of the youth,” said Lussier.

The theme of 2018/2019 ‘Heroines and Heritage’ includes feminine elements that speak to women, evoke national pride as well as symbols of strength, heritage, wisdom and beauty. Acting Diamond Hub Coordinator in Botswana, Diana Moabe said that the theme has come at an opportune time where women are also encouraged to take part into different fields of the market.  “The theme interrogates women and heritage which are the dynamics of the past and the future,” she said adding that the time is now, to get commercialised pieces at an affordable price. 

“The more the number of women into leadership in businesses, the more profitable the businesses become,” Moabe said as she applauded Thamaga Pottery for the well done job, saying that empowering women is the most important procedure., hence the De Beers conference also had the W summit, to empower women.

Vice-President of Corporate Affairs and Government Relations, De Beers Global Sightholder Sales, Pat Dambe also said the awards are meaningful to the producer countries. “We have just concluded roadshows to all the four De Beers Group producer countries, where we visited various Universities to present to design students on the project and how they can become part of it. Reception has been great.  Over the years, we have seen high quality submissions and we anticipate that this year the response will be even greater.”
The De Beers Designers Initiative has created the opportunity for the Shining Light Awards winners to attend the Faculty of Design at Milan Polytechnic as part of the company’s youth beneficiation strategy.

“We are very happy to have taken this into a scholarship programme to include Batswana, Namibians, South Africans and Canadian participants with aspirations to participate in the downstream of the diamond industry,” said Dambe. Local jewellery designers were encouraged to look out to these awards to benefit from the opportunity as well as sell Botswana as a diamond country with their superior talent.

Published in Style
Tuesday, 04 December 2018 16:18

Mahamba lives out of drawings

The super talented Mpho Mahamba is one of those artistes that the country could boast of. He shares with BG Style that only a few people around his circle know about his talent. His is an absolute talent that he did not go to school for, but he confidently lives and breathes creativity as an integrated artist.

Back in the day, there used to be black and white photographs only, but transformation would later come up with better and digital means of clear and colour pictures that also requires the best photographer. However, Mahamba uses no camera and has kept the memories of black and white effects alive with his manual drawings.

Without a doubt, the young man literally draws something exactly the way it is, which he says it’s an inborn talent. “I did not go to school for art. I would say this is just my God-given talent and I am confident in what I do,” Mahamba boasts with a smile.
The persuasive and articulate artist has superb and influencing skills, as well as the ability to come up with great ideas in his work.

He does not only draw and paint but also does artistic shoe pimp as well as t-shirts. While demonstrating, Mahamba says that shoes made out of canvas are his friends because when they become old, he can make them anew within a blink of an eye. “I often look at the shoe size and shape then give it an appropriate look by repainting it and sometimes I work as per the client’s decision,” he said.

The 27 years- old Mahamba clarifies that he uses different art media including pencils, charcoal, and paint and pens doing both abstract artworks and realistic artwork being landscape and portrait drawings. His art also involves animation, where he takes someone’s picture and animates it before printing it on t-shirts, which he calls self-branding. The Tutume born artist tells BG Style that he is also a member of Thapong Visual Arts Centre where he sometimes exhibits his work. His target audience mainly include families, couples and individuals. He aspires to do all sorts of arts to the corporate companies, particularly portraits and landscape work.

This past weekend, he showcased his work at Airport Junction mall where a lot of people appreciated his work. A lot were fascinated by the fact that the young man has also drawn portraits of himself as a brand of his work ‘Mahamba’. He also takes pride in the fact that he has had an opportunity to draw Minister Unity Dow and Thabo Thamane, the CEO of CEDA. His Facebook page is Mahamba Arts.

Published in Style
Tuesday, 04 December 2018 16:12

Local film industry in a revival mode

Earlier this week, the Minister of Youth Employment, Sport and Culture Development, Thapelo Olopeng met for a consultative meeting with local Film and Television producers in Gaborone, where he informed the packed auditorium that his ministry is ready to expedite the amendment of the Cinematograph Act.

He also informed the creatives that the industry needs a robust structure in the form of the National Arts Council, which the industry has been demanding for a number of years as well as the Film Commission. The creatives were also informed that the next tendering process for content for Now TV was on the way. Now TV has a budget of P50 million, and P10 million from this budget goes towards the running of the station as well as investing in structures such as the infrastructure for live streaming.  Other key issues that came out was the need to have a rate card, which will guide stakeholders; the question of the P50 million budget which they feel is too little for the industry, and concerns over the 13 episodes which is the current requirement for content. Some felt that 13 episodes that translates into three months is very little and are calling for 26 episodes at the most.  For his part, Olopeng told the gathering that the fact that the first citizen is a creative, having acted in productions such as Joseph and the Amazing Technicolours means that he understands the challenges facing the industry.

He also promised that they will move very fast on breathing life into the National Arts Council. One of the key issues that came out was related to content acquisition. Some feel that commissioning is the future when it comes to acquiring content.
“Commissioning is transparent, and it will save a lot of filmmakers as unsolicited content is expensive,” says Kabo Monare.  For his part, Olopeng assured the producers that he was at the meeting to get advice from them, and that his office will not shy away from consulting.  He also says that they will engage experts, and that this is only the beginning of good things to come.

“We started with Now TV this year. It took us two years to get it running. The president has called for us to consult as much as possible which is why we are consulting today. I will be a fast messenger between you and the cabinet,” he promised.  Clarifying the Now TV issue, the broadcaster Cordinator Legae Digwaamaje highlighted that they have signed the draft contract with DStv, and that they were in the process of procuring hardware that will enable them to decode the Now TV signal before it airs.  He also says that their wish is not to have Geo blocking, where the channel is only available on some parts of the region, but that due to contractual obligations with the other parties, the channel will only be broadcast in Botswana.

He further says that they are in partnership with BOFINET which will see them streaming live online.  Speaking on the sidelines of the forum, Pascar Proctor said the industry is in a revival stage, a good revival, he emphasised. He says that for years, the industry has been in a summit with founding and early players but has since seen new players getting involved. He further advised that to go into the next level of growth, the industry needs to summit as an army and not as individuals. Proctor, however, points out that the world is moving away from film commissions and arts councils, but that locally these two initiatives should be done in a modern way in order to survive the next twenty years.

Published in Style
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