Students of tourism at Botswana Accountancy College (BAC) successfully hosted a cultural day, which attracted different stakeholders last week, showcasing different traditional gatherings, rituals and celebrations including Dikgafela and Patlo.
Presentations that stood out were that of fashion lines in traditional attire by fashionista Edward Masukud -‘I coz Trafik’ fashion brand, and Kaone’s House of Kay. Guest speaker at the event Tebogo Phiri -an entrepreneur in tourism said he was moved by the dedication and commitment showed by the students in putting the whole event together. He urged them to be serious with tourism and find ways they can better it in Botswana because there is still more to be done in the sector. He said Botswana's biggest undoing is not selling herself enough ot the world. He expressed concern that locally some cultures are not welcoming of others. “When a Mokalaka or Moherero speak their languages other people walk away. Batswana never found interest in learning each other's languages and that is sad," he said.
On the cultural night the were performances by poets who displayed immense talent in Setswana poetry, and the spectacular performance by Batsumi Traditional Group which fused modern beats with traditional dancing and traditional instruments to make it more appealing. The performances were closed by the popular Broadway song ‘In the jungle’ which they sang perfectly well showing massive talent that they possess.
The organiser of the event, Mokgalo Lelokwane, said they started the concept to celebrate the Culture Day last year. He said preparing for this one was harder since they had to surpass expectations of the people that graced the first event. He said their mandate as the school is not to lose the essence of where it all started. "Culture is an identity and a human product and above all a tourism product," he said.
In an interview with The Patriot on Sunday Chief Tourism Officer Patricia Mokotedi, from The Department of Tourism said she is impressed by what the students displayed since they showed creativity and awareness of tourism and culture. She said it was educational and as the tourism overseer in Botswana they appreciate the celebration of culture day by the students. She said their hope is for this to not only finish in schools but rather go beyond. "Let it not be for classroom only, and you could see that it was from their hearts and they were not forced, and that is a good thing because we want to see more youth involved in tourism and encouraging others," she said. She added that since the youth constitute 60 per cent of the population of Botswana they have a lot of potential to grow the tourism industry. She said they believe that the youth have the ability to sell