Responding to a question in parliament, Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture (MYSC) Tumiso Rakgare revealed that his Ministry annually injects P120,000.00 from the Arts and Culture Grant for each of Botswana’s cultural festivals.
Questioned on what strategies are in place to resuscitate the Domboshaba Annual Cultural Festival and pair it with other similar cultural festivals to create an annual Northern Cultural Festival, Rakgare said MYSC cultural festivals are meant to promote and preserve cultural practices and traditions.
“They stimulate social cohesion, improve the social environment and have beneficial economic spin offs for the local communities,” he said in parliament.
“In 2014 my ministry resuscitated some of the Community Cultural Festivals such as Domboshaba, Kuru, Poetavango and Dithubaruba to include more activities in their presentation as well as documentation of the same,” Rakgare said.
Responding to Tati West MP, Simon Moabi’s question, he said “Our ministry assisted Domboshaba Community Trust to renovate their facilities to appeal to the patrons of the festival as well as to provide other technical support for the festival.” In total, MYSC has expended an amount of P1 372 000.00 to the Domboshaba Trust since 2014” the minister said.
Adding on to his ministry’s financial assistance, Rakgare said: “Our ministry ensures the festival is included in the national calendar of events to market and promote the diverse activities undertaken.”
Regarding the consolidation of Domboshaba Cultural Festival with other festivals and cultural heritage sites into a big annual Festival, Rakgare said: “Communities are encouraged to develop, protect, preserve, document and promote their local tourism attractions by setting up formal structures such as community trusts. The youth minister added that collaboration with local authorities is key in order to carry out joint cultural tourism activities, as such, the government will support such efforts in whatever way possible.”