The Gaborone Book Festival 2022 runs at the University of Botswana from September 15-17, 2022. It will be brought to you in partnership with IDM, Botswana, Maitisong, and the University of East Anglia.
The Gaborone Book Festival, founded by Keikantse Phele and Kenanao Phele, first ran in the Southern African country of Botswana in 2018. The event, which also run in 2019, 2020, and 2021 was aimed at fostering a love for reading among Batswana and residents of Botswana. It has hosted many writers and poets from Botswana and across the continent.
On April 12, festival organisers revealed the dates for this the fifth edition to be September 15-17 in the capital of the Southern African country. Since then, they have been sharing more information on the program and the artists who will feature over the three days. Here is what has been shared since that date revelation;
Thursday, September 15
The opening night emceed by Cathy Malejane will be officiated by assistant minister of youth, gender, and sports Honest Buti Billy will include a poetry performance by Angie Chuma Thato and remarks by festival curators. Dudu Busani-Dube will be in conversation on the topic “from books to TV and vice versa” while the University of East Anglia’s Prof Jean McNeil will have a chat on the partnership between her university and Gaborone Book Festival.
Friday, September 16
The Friday program which also starts at 6 pm will have a poetry performance by Mandisa Mabuthoe and a presentation of The Solo Runner: The Untold Story of Isaac Makwala a biography written by Tshepang Tshube. Also on the program will be a panel on writing indigenous languages which features Dr Kgolo-Lotshwao (Ithute Kgomo), Prof Letsholo-Tafila (Uzwidiye Ikalanga), and Edwin Moroka (Legaleng Sekhutlwana Sa Bannye).
Saturday, September 17
On this last day of the festival, there will be two masterclasses starting with one on editing by Mafoko Manuscript Services and the topic “Stand Against Bland” by Sylvester Chauke. There will be a yoga and mental health session led by Bonolo Phaladze (Yoga at Yownn) featuring Relebone Rirhandzu eAfrika (Broken Porcelain).
There will be several panels including “What Should Our Children Be Reading” featuring Zukiswa Wanner (Black Pimpernel: Nelson Mandela on The Run) and Bontekanye Botumile (Nature’s Clean Up Crew). That session will be followed by selected readings by participants of the workshop conducted by the Gaborone Book Fair and the University of East Anglia alongside Jean McNeil. Then there will be “Becoming The Best Version of Yourself” featuring Rachel Nekati (Just Shift), Dr Kgomotso Jongman (Preserve or Perish), and Joe T. Kabomo.
There will also be readings by Brigitta Zwane (Kasane), Dudu Busani-Dube (The End), and Dr Kgolo-Lotshwao (Ithute Kgomo). Angie Thato Chuma will conduct a question-and-answer session on African spirituality before the evening session which is a poetry medley.
Those who are in Gaborone are welcome to attend their premier literary event this weekend.