Lesedi – Kata Goddess (allAfrica.com)

In some cultures, they say a person’s fate lies on her name perhaps that is why police officer Stigger Mabolokanye and his wife Bonnie from Motokwe, 19 years ago named their daughter Lesedi. Lesedi means Light.
Any parent wants the best for their young ones and this could be true for what the Mabolokanyes wanted for their second born, and their wish for her to shine is now a reality. Lesedi is one of the remarkable karatekas in the country.
Certainly her light overrides the recent controversies that have been surrounding Botswana Karate Association (BOKA) and exhibit the association’s capability of producing competent karatekas, commendable of any meet.
For years, BOKA has been doing exceptionally well, in terms of producing best athletes as well as managing the code. They were among the first codes to hold awards to honour their athletes and stakeholders and also source out meaningful sponsorship, a gesture that was envied by many.
Despite the recent happenings, BOKA can console themselves by some of their talents such as 19-year-old Lesedi who topped the Under 21 Girls Individual Kata category held at UB student centre on Saturday, February 21.
The weekend meet was used as a yardstick to select the national team members. It was the first of the three legs of selection; the karatekas are expected to accumulate points per meet. Those with highest points in all the three legs will make it into the team.
The saying that you should not reject someone because of their weakness as such will result in your rejecting their strength; best defines this prolific karateka’s life. Lesedi, who is awaiting her form five results, is one of a kind to spare your moments with. Her presence on stage sends a silencing note to the audience, you want to watch her every move, the stance how she infuses her techniques and all. The continuous ovations indicate how the audience appreciates what she does.
After her amazing feat, we caught up with Lesedi who seemed to be an opposite of what we watched earlier.
She is shy, talks softly and so emotional. “When I am on stage I enter my own zone, where no one exists, but I and the karate world.
It’s a space where I don’t even see my audience; I express myself with my moves.” She said.
Growing up as a small girl, she suffered emotional abuse from other children because she is a stammer.
“Some pupils abused me and made me to have a low self-esteem. I guess that is why I am so close to my mother, because she protects me,” she said.
And it became evident that the issue is a thorn to her as she started tearing up. Now the interview was turning into a counseling session where I had to assure her that this issue cannot determine who she will become.
I think that is why her mother, Bonnie encouraged Lesedi to join the SSG Karate club, given its proximity to their homestead. She was only seven years, and her mother believed that karate is therapeutic and noble for boosting one’s confidence.
Since then, she never looked back, and just at 13 years she joined the national team, a slot she secured by merit.
“My life took a total shot; my talent started earning me the respect I always yearned for. She won most of the school competitions she participated in. With such an impressive record in school, every student wants to be closer to you.
“To date when I step on stage I remember that I have people who look up to me and I also strive not disappoint my fan of all times, my mother. These are the people who drive me to do my best,” she said.
While talking to her, her mother interrupts us, “I want to rush to the mall; will you be comfortable to compete in my absence? Quizzed Bonny with a smile. Lesedi seemed hesitant, something that made me to realise how close they are. She comes from a family of three girls and she is the second born and her younger sister Gomolemo is in the junior team.
“My mother is my strength, she always stands up for me, and because of that people tease me that I behave babyish. I think it’s because of the support she is giving me that spurred my younger sister to join karate,” stressed Lesedi.
She said karate has helped her in achieving the things she has always liked and said she is also doing part time modeling under Sands modeling Agency, something that will add value to her desired career.
“I want to study international business as the field has job opportunities world over. I have studied commerce at school and that is one of the necessary elements in international business.”
The SSKB karate club member has an impressive career, she has performed well in zonal competitions, held in different countries such as South Africa, Mozambique, Zimbabwe to mention a few.
In 2013 she roped eight gold medals in one competition and in 2014 she was voted BISA 2014 Best karateka.
She credits her coach Sensei Peter Molefe for her success. She aspires to be a referee and contribute to the development of karate in the country. She believes that sport has potential to transform lives such as in her case.
Source : BOPA
Source: Business