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Founding mothers

Publishing Date : 26 June, 2018


Beata Kasale is being buried today. With her sudden passing, she has sadly left us to join the other historic builders of our country.

As a media activist as well the co-founder and driving force behind Botswana’s The Voice newspaper; which has in recent years also evolved into one of Africa’s leading online news and information publishers,  Kasale now joins her once patron the late Clara Olsen as a pioneer role model for women in the media.

Kasale published her first newspaper article, about a fashion show held at Gaborone Sun, in the Botswana Gazette in 1986 under the pseudonym. This became her practice at the time as she was working then working for DeBeers. [Other prominent media figures once associated with Mma Olsen’s Gazette include Outsa Mokone, Spencer Mogapi, Aubrey Lute, Pamela Dube and Abraham Motsokono, among others].

Like Olsen, Kasale was media activist who passionately believed in the freedom and development of local media. In both cases, this commitment was reflected in their active support not only of domestic media organisations, but also the global status they came to enjoy as strong African voices in international media and human rights fora. For her part Kasale combined a deep sense of compassion with an emotional intelligence that made her an invaluable counsellor to a great number of people from all levels of society, as well as a successful self-made entrepreneur.

As reflected in her own activism, as well the independent reporting in her newspaper, Kasale devoted herself to giving voice and support to the economically and socially marginalised. This was manifest in her personal involvement, as well as newspaper exposes, addressing such issues as gender violence, youth alienation, ethnic discrimination and class exploitation. These same qualities, incidentally, also made Ausi Bee a great friend to those of us who were privileged to know her, as well as wonderful mother, grandmother and aunt to her extended family. MHSRIP



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