So we have had these Vision 2016 pillars for some years now and, over the years, a lot of people, myself included, have become a bit cynical about us as a nation achieving the vision we so much crave for. It seems, with each passing year, the hope grows dimmer and dimmer and Vision 2016 seems like an illusion, a blind man’s dream.
Tuesday 24th January 2012 saw our hopes as a nation being renewed; the deflated pillars of our vision got some air pumped into them. You know how they say there is always a light at the end of a tunnel, well we found a bonfire in the middle of our tunnel, and we found hope in the midst of our hopelessness.
I bet the whole of Botswana came to a standstill and the whole country reeked of pride and I don’t think we have ever been as united as we were on that day. Even the sound of car hooters was somehow synchronized with the sound of the vuvuzelas that were harmonized and played to the rhythm of our hearts.
For the first time ever in history, we understood that it wasn’t about winning or losing, it was bigger than the football match itself as Botswana made its debut on the continental football stage. We stood proudly united as a nation in front of the world, rallying behind our boys who have come so far.
It wasn’t about diamonds or beef; it wasn’t even about football. It was about how far we have come as a nation.
Facebook, Twitter and the streets of our country were beautifully decorated in blue, black and blue as our flag was waving high. Football has never made us this proud and united. For the first time ever, we gave ourselves an example of what it means to be a proud and united nation. Even those who hate football, like myself, could not contain their joy and pride. I actually sat down alone at home to watch the game.
A united and proud nation has been achieved, so maybe there is still some hope for the rest of the pillars. We have Emma Wareus, Amantle Montsho and the mighty Zebras to thank for this pride we feel. Not only have they made us proud but have made us believe and opened our eyes to the talent we have in this country and have taught us how far passion, perseverance and support can take us.
A team composed of local young men dripping with talent that has been natured and coached locally by a local mentor, wearing a local clothing label representing all that is proudly and locally Botswana, that is what the Zebras are.
Win or lose, I am behind the boys a 100 percent and will always be proud of them.
Now let’s go show them how it’s done, GO ZEBRAS!