Meet Botswana’s Re­cently Ap­pointed Min­is­ter of In­vest­ment Trade and In­dus­try

Zambian Business Times - - FRONT PAGE -

Born in the Mo­topi vil­lage in Boteti, it was clear early on that Ke­newendo was des­tined for big things.

Born in the Mo­topi vil­lage in Boteti, it was clear early on that Ke­newendo was des­tined for big things.

In 2009, she was se­lected as one of two youth del­e­gates to rep­re­sent Botswana at the United Na­tions Gen­eral As­sem­bly, where she was nom­i­nated to de­liver the state­ment of African youth to UN Sec­re­tary- Gen­eral Ban Ki-Moon.

Two years later, she was in­vited to at­tend for­mer First Lady Michelle Obama’s Young African Lead­ers Ini­tia­tive for young women lead­ers.

In­spired by her en­counter and driven by a pas­sion for youth de­vel­op­ment and women em­pow­er­ment, Ke­newendo co-founded Mo­laya Kgosi – a women lead­er­ship and men­tor­ship pro­gramme that has been rolled out across sev­eral schools across Botswana.

“My path has kept chang­ing as my life changes and as I see new op­por­tu­ni­ties, but the con­sis­tent un­der­tone is my de­sire to im­pact de­vel­op­ment through pol­icy in one of­fice or the other,” she said in an in­ter­view with This is Africa.

“I am pas­sion­ate about youth and women em­pow­er­ment. There is so much more we can ac­com­plish by en­sur­ing that we in­vest in these re­sources. There is also a need for eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment, es­pe­cially through pri­vate-sec­tor growth.”

Ke­newendo holds a Mas­ters in In­ter­na­tional Eco­nomics from the Uni­ver­sity of Sus­sex in the UK, which she at­tained as a re­cip­i­ent of the pres­ti­gious Chevening Schol­ar­ship in 2012.

Prior to be­com­ing an MP, Ke­newendo worked as a trade economist in Ghana’s Depart­ment of Trade and In­dus­try for sev­eral years, with a spe­cial fo­cus on macro-eco­nomic pol­icy, pub­lic debt man­age­ment, trade pol­icy, ex­port de­vel­op­ment and trade and in­vest­ment pol­icy.

Over the years, Ke­newendo has been recog­nised mul­ti­ple times for her re­solve to build young lead­ers in her coun­try.

In 2012, she was awarded the 10 Out­stand­ing Young Per­sons award by the Ju­nior Cham­ber In­ter­na­tional Botswana, while in 2016, she re­ceived the Botswana Change Mak­ers Award in the busi­ness and lead­er­ship cat­e­gory.

In the same year, she walked away with the For­mi­da­ble Woman Award and was hon­oured by the UK For­eign and Com­mon­wealth Of­fice In­ter­na­tional Lead­ers Pro­gramme.

Bo­golo Ke­newendo newly ap­pointed Botswana Min­is­ter of In­vest­ment, Trade and In­dus­try

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