‘Girls throw themselves at me’ - Bruce Nkgakile

12th February 2018
FLAMBOYANT: Bruce Nkgakile Source:The Midweek Sun


By Keletso Thobega -

Bruce Nkgakile has always been a controversial figure. He has made his mark in politics, business and has been implicated in a few money scandals. Most recently, he was reportedly kicked out of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) Youth executive committee following an accusation of “theft.” Like the proverbial cat with nine lives, he always bounces back from his “troubles” with that animated grin on his face.

Just an ordinary guy Despite his materialism and showing off, Nkgakile is quite chilled. Unlike the so-called celebrities of Gabs who walk around with their noses in the air, Nkgakile is approachable and amiable. Throughout our talk, a few people stop by to chat and he gives them his undivided attention before turning back to me. He enjoys talking, and boy, can he talk! He also laughs a lot: a boisterous loud boom that comes out sounding like the ‘ho ho ho’ of Father Christmas.

The 47k cake that actually cost 55k… Nkgakile recently set tongues wagging when he threw a lavish 29th birthday party at his restaurant. The centre of attention was a birthday cake that he claimed cost a whopping P47, 000. The cake, which apparently weighs 3kg, is designed as a Luis Vuitton bag, with cash notes around it, and a picture of Nkgakile in front. A cake worth that much, really? He takes on an animated tone. “It actually cost P55, 000 and something, ” he says. He refuses to say who made it. “After the controversy, the company told me to not reveal their identity.” He says children at the Gamodubu Centre will eat the cake. He had a party with them recently. Why not donate money instead? Nkgakile insists that he gives to charity a lot. “It’s just that I don’t post and boast about it on social media,” he adds.

A penchant for the finer things. Nkgakile is not shy to splash money. He pumps out his chest theatrically like a peacock, and opens his jacket and shows off his shoes, exclaiming: “This jacket cost P5, 000, these shoes cost P6, 000…” Apparently he wears only expensive luxury brand, your Gucci and Dolce and Gabanna, among others. It is Saturday evening and he says he just flew in from Joburg where he had gone to collect his latest toy, a luxury station wagon but was involved in a minor accident. “I am fine now,” he says. As if an afterthought, he boastfully adds: “I slept at Michelangelo Hotel (Sandton). How many Batswana do you know who can spend two nights there?” A night at the swanky hotel costs on average between P4000 and P12, 000 per night.

Not your average hustler… He says he works hard and plays hard. Nkgakile looks and smells of money. He is clean, sated and has that unique ‘new car leather interior’ smell that rich people have. Moneyed folk never tell the whole truth about how they attained their riches. I get the sense that Nkgakile is no different. When I ask where he got money he at first appears perplexed but quickly composes himself before saying something vague about how he used to sell T-shirts and how he now invests in property. I prod further hoping that he would slip about a financial windfall, deal or angel investor. Nothing. He doesn’t seem offended when I bring up his money scandals He however insists that his hands are clean. “People will always talk. Ba kile ba re ke utswile two million mme ga ke a tshwarwa.” And then…that boisterous laugh again.

‘We started from the bottom now we here’ His poor upbringing is well documented because Nkgakile has spoken about it a lot. He claims that he comes from poverty and was raised in the dusty streets of Tsolamosese in Mogoditshane in a single-parent female-led home. He always yearned for the finer life and worked his way to the top. Nkgakile studied law at the University of Botswana although he has never practised. Life threw different opportunities his way and he is here, rich and living his life.

Haters can go hang He says that he is aware that there are people who don’t like him and how he flaunts his well-to-do lifestyle. “As much as I have enemies and detractors, there are people who respect and look up to me as a role model.” He says people should work towards earning and spending their own money instead of being haters. “I spend as I want because I earned my money,” he adds.

Miss Africa, Diamond City and other events The shrewd businessman says Miss Africa came to an abrupt end due to lack of funding. “We were being funded by the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture but when they stopped due to financial challenges, we also had to pause because they were our main sponsor. However, we will revive it once we secure funds.” He is keen on events and apart from trying his hand at several events including Diamond City, which brought Wizkid to Botswana late last year; he also runs the popular MYKOP restaurant.

On politics and contesting elections in 2019 Nkgakile says that he has plans to stand in Mogoditshane in the upcoming general election. “I will stand, even if it is under the UDC ticket. If they approach me, I will go on board.” He insists that his politics is not about the stomach or ideology but serving people. “I love doing my bit for my community. I won’t be standing out of hunger but a genuine desire to serve people.”

On love and girls Nkgagile says that girls throw themselves at him. “I have the money, the cars… the fame. Some girls like all that,” he says. I point out that he is said to have a weakness for model types with pretty faces and tiny waists. He roars with laughter. He is cagey but admits that there is “bae”.

A reality TV show on the cards… He excitedly shares that plans are at an advanced stage for a reality television show that will chronicle his interesting life. “I am working with a big local production company,” he says.

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