Kenewendo: Masisi's golden girl

18th April 2018
FULL OF LIFE: Bogolo Kenewendo Source:The Midweek Sun


By Keletso Thobega -

Her first name, Bogolo, denotes ‘greatness’ in Setswana and she has lived up to it. Tall, slim and pretty, with bewitching beady eyes, Bogolo Kenewendo has made a positive impression on many with her intellect and visionary outlook.

There was a buzz recently when the 31-year-old was appointed Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, the youngest minister in Botswana’s recent history. Only Daniel Kwelagobe beats her to the title of Botswana’s youngest minister of all times, having become minister himself at the age of 26 shortly after completing his studies at Gaborone Secondary School (GSS).

Bogolo has also been hailed as Cabinet’s best catch.

Not a bad feat for a lass who a few years ago was an ordinary student at GSS and later UB. Inside sources say that Kenewendo is President Mokgweetsi Masisi’s “golden girl.” A source says she was “head-hunted and earmarked” for her current position. But with an MSc in Economics as well as work experience that spans consulting locally and in Ghana, she also has the insight of what makes the continent tick in relation to global development.

Hitting the ground running...

There are no airs and graces about her – she is grounded, yet she also means business. In an interview with The Midweek Sun, Kenewendo notes that she has already outlined a mandate with her team. “We intend to create a conducive environment for doing business that will stimulate local investment and foreign direct investment; to facilitate the development of industry (domestic trade), so that we are able to trade and export, primarily.” She says that the priority is to facilitate doing business no matter the size of the business. “SMMEs are the engine of any economy. A vibrant private sector will create jobs, which is our national goal.”

Investment in youth vital

Kenewendo believes that it is vital to understand and invest in young people. “Young people need a conducive environment to explore their potential. We have a lot of amazing and hard working young people and we can only know what they are capable of if we give them space and support,” she says.

It is time for Africa

She envisions an Africa that is united, prosperous and economically-liberated. “This is the Africa that was envisioned by great leaders such as Masire, Mandela and Nkrumah, among others... an Africa that embraces its roots, encourages innovation and supports its youth.”

Every girl needs love...

Kenewendo has revealed she is single – which could probably be music to the ears of her legions of fans, mostly men who have a crush on her. With eligible bachelors falling over themselves to woo her, it remains to be seen who will be the lucky gent to sweep her off her feet.

Work hard and play harder

All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. The Minister says that she spends her free time with friends and family. “The family I live with plays golf together and we also sing and dance a lot!” She admits that she can’t say no to travelling to new places. And oh, she is also a foodie. “I never bow down in an eating or tasting challenge!” she adds.

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