Sir Seretse Khama of Botswana

A true African warrior and hero
Brought his country from almost zero
To one of the richest in the continent
Born to a royal family in Bechuanaland
In the year 1921
The imprints of his great footsteps
Guide the magical path to date
Of the shining jewel of Africa
Sir Seretse Khama
He is why Botswana shines bright in Africa

This former student of Bachelor of Arts then Law
With his British sweetheart did make marital vows
At a time black and white interracial relations were a crime
British and South African colonialists
Tried in vain to resist and demonize
Even his own BaNgwato community banished him
In 1962 Khama founded Bechuanaland Democratic party
And in 1965 became Prime Minister

In 1966 Botswana became independent
And he was installed the first President
He started his reign when his nation
was third poorest in the world
But he had a plan for his land; a great vision
And started a rigorous and vigorous
Economic program of transformation
And fighting Africa’s big enemy of corruption
Sir Seretse Khama
He is why Botswana shines bright in Africa

The President lowered taxes and liberalized the economy
Investing in healthcare, education,
infrastructure and cattle industry
Ensuring public service ran smooth and efficient
He encouraged mining and rallied his people to be resilient
Khama knew the importance of and improved negotiations
And bettered international relations

The sun set on a hill in Serowe Central District
And curtains fell on 13th July 1980
He lies peacefully in the Royal Cemetery
Best remembered for embracing the rule of law
hiring workers on meritocracy
And setting Botswana on the great path to success
Fare thee well Knight of 1966; Father of the nation
Sir Seretse Khama
He is why Botswana Shines bright in Africa

Copyright © 2021 Francis Juma

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