#Top5atFive: Here’s what’s happening in Lesotho and around the globe


Today’s reading recommendation is a short article on how you can consume news and social media more mindfully. With all that happening right now, we could all use a few tips.

1. Local headlines

Poet, author, editor, translator, publisher and artist, Sekhobo Moshe who was born and bred at Ha- Motloheloa and plies his trade in Bloemfontein, South Africa speaks life into poetry.

The 29-year old Moshe has already made a mark again on the poetry scene by winning first prize in the 2019/2020 National AVBOB Poetry competition that was held on August 6 in Pretoria. And so all South Africans of all ages were invited to enter poems in all 11 official languages, with the themes of Love, Hope, Death and Birth to guide them. Moshe scooped the award out of another 15000 contestants and was among the 11 winners in different language categories.

This is the third award he is receiving, after the one he won at the Macufe Word Fest 2017, and another where he represented Sesotho poetry at the Grahamstown International Art’s festival.

He also advised everyone who wants to further their talents not to lose hope because he is willing to help through his arts development centre and publishing house called Yaka Nalane Creatives.

[Lesotho poet wins SA contest, The Reporter]

2. Local headlines

Twenty-four-year old Kemelo Matela has written a science textbook titled ‘Purified Chemistry’ which he says was prompted by the observation that more than 90 percent of grade 12 learners do not perform well in the Sciences (Mathematics & Physical Science). Matela, who hails from Qalo in Botha-Bothe, says he believes do not score good results because the textbooks they use are not locally authored and therefore do not meet their needs.

“The authors do not have any experience of Lesotho education hence their books are written in the context of their countries; this makes it hard for us local students to relate, because we fail to grasp the context.

Matela went to the National University of Lesotho where he graduated last year (2019) with First Class in BSc Chemical Technology and graduated top of his class.

Matela states that in this textbook, every chapter includes a motivational quote to inspire students. “So according to me and based on my experience, I think this kind of push inspiration should be incorporated in books for students to do better,” he concluded.

[NUL alumnus writes science textbook, The Reporter]

3. Global headlines

“There is no crisis, political or otherwise,” said Information Secretary Nick Mangwana. He accused the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishop’s Conference (ZCBC) of joining groups seeking “to manufacture crises”.

The bishops had called for an urgent resolution to the country’s economic and political challenges. “The struggle in Zimbabwe, has resulted in a multi-layered crisis of convergence of economic collapse, deepening poverty, food insecurity and human rights abuses,” said seven bishops from Zimbabwe’s main cities and towns in a letter released on Friday.

“Corruption in the country has reached alarming levels,” they added. “Fear runs down the spine of many of our people today. The crackdown of dissent is unprecedented,” the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops Conference said in their letter.

But writing in the state-owned The Herald newspaper, Mr Mangwana defended the government.

He said President Mnangagwa had demonstrated his commitment to fight corruption, highlighting the arrest of high profile individuals and strengthening of anti-corruption bodies.

The information secretary also said the bishops had ignored the impact that close to two decades of economic sanctions had had on the country.

[Zimbabwe rejects Catholic bishops’ criticism of corruption and abuse, BBC]

4. In lifestyle

The Maseru 2022 Youth Games are likely to be postponed to 2023 or 2025 as a result of the negative impact posed by the novel Coronavirus, following a suggestion moved in an Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA) recent meeting to discuss preparations and progress of the games. Lesotho was officially confirmed host country for the 2022 African Youth Games in 2018, with the event penciled for the capital city from February 25 to March 6, 2022.

ANOCA’s confirmation followed an Extraordinary General Assembly held prior to the third edition of the African Youth Games in Algiers, Algeria. A statement released by the Lesotho National Olympic Committee (LNOC), following the ANOCA meeting, says deliberations also covered the state of preparations for the games, infrastructure and funding.

The LNOC, the statement adds, is yet to enter into discussions with the government over the mulled postponed for a final decision in a meeting to be held late this month. This is Lesotho’s first ever opportunity to host the games which target the 14 to 18 age groups and aim to contribute to the development of African sport and to the growth of Olympism and Olympic values.

[2022 Maseru Youth Games threatened, Informative News]

5. What we’re reading

If you know the sticky, foggy feeling after a quick glance at your Twitter feed turns into hours of mindless scrolling, today’s recommendation is for you. From daily headlines about injustice to other people’s picture perfect relationships to our collective anxiety about the ongoing pandemic, social media and 24 hour news can be exhausting. In this article, Dr Ashika Pillay offers practical steps we can take to be more mindful about what we consume, when and how. We think it’ll be a great read to kick start your week. 

[Feeling overwhelmed by news and social media? Develop a Mindful Media approach, Lionesses of Africa]


Matlhabeli Molaoli
Matlhabeli is a reader, an Afro-feminist and a firm believer in the power of human-centered design to create lasting social-economic impact. She is a rising junior at Smith College where she majors in both Biochemistry and Anthropology and also dabbles in venture consulting for the local start-up ecosystem. Matlhabeli also enjoys dialogue so she has spent much of her time attending, speaking at and organising TEDx conferences in both Lesotho and South Africa during her time as a student at the African Leadership Academy.