Three Dikgosi Monument

Monument in Gaborone

It’s an interesting kind of history when your nationalist heroes are three guys who argued your country should continue to be a protectorate of Africa’s biggest imperialist power, but welcome to Botswana. The dikgosi (chiefs) are memorialised in imposing form at this large, badly placed (in the shadow of an office block) monument, which also includes panels featuring carvings of national virtues, including ‘Botshabelo’ (refuge), ‘Bogaka’ (heroism), ‘Boitshoko’ (endurance), ‘Maikarabelo’ (global responsibility) and ‘Boipuso’ (independence).

By helping to keep Botswana under the administration of the British Crown, the Batswana chiefs in question – Bathoen, Khama II and Sebele – prevented the country from coming under the control of Cecil Rhodes, who most likely would have been a far more exploitative administrator.