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Mr and Miss RADP pencilled for November 25

15 Nov 2023

Miss RADP beauty pageant grand finale is scheduled for November 25 at Boipuso Hall in Gaborone. 

Assistant Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Talita Monnakgotla, confirmed the date during a press conference on Tuesday. 

The pageant is on the 10th year running. 

“The pageant has grown immensely since inception in 2013,” she said. Ms Monnakgotla said it had gained popularity and significance in the Botswana pageantry and modeling scene. This year marks the second round running under the patronage of First Lady, Neo Masisi. 

“We have enjoyed a lot of support since she became the programme patron,” the Assistant Minister said. Ms Monnakgotla said the programme’s theme and objectives were still consistent and aligned to the 2014 Affirmative Action Framework for Remote Area Communities. When giving a word of encouragement to the 34 contestants who will be vying for the title, she said they should know that the platform allowed them to be change agents in their respective districts. 

“My expectation is that you will be ambassadors of RADP by way of participation in community outreach programmes representing the RADP at national and international level and participating in arts and cultural activities,” she said. 

She also said they should know that the reigning Queen and King were expected to advocate behavioural change among the youth in remote areas, especially in areas of sexual and reproductive health, alcohol and substance abuse among others. 

Regarding the selection criteria, she said the national pageant and fashion show finalists were recently changed following the upgrading of Sub- districts. 

“We have 17 contestants for each category. However, the process remains unchanged and each of the 17 RADP districts select their Queen and King and their runner ups,” she said. 

For her part on behalf of the sponsors of the event, Limkokwing regional director, Academic Management, Onalenna Phambuka said government could not deliver the pageant alone, ‘hence the need for sponsors coming on board consistently over the past 10 years to support this great initiative that empowers the youth’. 

“It is about an infant talent and building individual self-confidence and responding to social life skills challenges within your community,” she said. She said she was impressed that last year’s first princess owns businesses and creates generational wealth. 

Reigning Miss RADP 2022 first runner up, Mary Sechele from Zoroga in the North West District shared her journey prior to and after the pageant. She said her journey began at Zoroga and proceeded to the sub-district level, the district level, and then the grand finale. 

“Proceeding through these levels was not easy as there was a lot of hard work that I had to put in,” she said. 

She said early preparation was key. She advised them to not wait for the last day, as they were most likely to make countless mistakes. 

Sechele said they should also make a conscious effort to make their dreams a reality and be humble. “This is very important because as a beauty Queen or King, you are bestowed with the responsibility to lead your people. 

You should never be arrogant or disrespectful to anyone,” she advised. Her prizes as a first runner-up were P7 000 cash prize, an additional P 5  000 and P60 000 to start a business of her choice as well as free business training and mentorship, which was offered by one of the sponsors, Palms for Life. 

“This pageant really changed my life as I am now in a position to create generational wealth for myself and the much needed employment for those in my community,” she said. Sechele shared that she chose event management as her business after winning the Miss RADP pageant, indicating that it was doing well. 

In an interview, one of the aspiring contestants for Miss RADP, Laone Meswele from the Kweneng District shared her entrepreneurial endeavours. 

She explained that she started a poultry business after realising that people in her village travelled long distances to buy meat. 

This initiative not only provided a convenient source of meat for the community, but also created employment for other youth. 

Additionally, she said she was involved in offering free tutorials at a primary school in Kweneng, demonstrating her commitment to education and community development. 

Another contestant, Kamogelo Freddy from the Tonota District, expressed his intentions if he were to win the Mr RADP. 

He stated that he planned to open a hair salon and games room in his home village, Gojwane. 

His aim is to provide a space for young people to engage in positive activities and avoid alcohol abuse and other vices. 

These stories highlight the contestants’ entrepreneurial spirit and their desire to make a positive impact in their communities. 

Through their businesses and community activities, they said they aimed to create employment opportunities, provide essential services and promote healthy and productive lifestyles among the youth. Ends

Picture: Assistant minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Talita Monnakgotla and Miss RADP contestants during a press conference in Gaborone on Tuesday. The pageant is scheduled for November 25 in Gaborone. Photo: Gothusang Lesego

Source : BOPA

Author : Bakang Wren

Location : Gaborone

Event : Press Conference

Date : 15 Nov 2023