Life doesn’t at all flow the same way for all of us. For some it’s a smooth ride while others it seems as though it is hell. For those that have it better we often think it is because of wealth or that they have been favoured by God above others.
Though this, and others, may be true about these people, it is not always the case. For some, it gets better because they have decided to rise up despite the many downfalls they encounter, even those that are caused by themselves. Yes for some, if not all, there is the hand of the almighty at play to their rescue but there is an element of resilience that they display.
I met, just yesterday, a man called Boyson Boipelo Mokone. I know back in the day Mokone, in street lingo meant an African foreigner but this is the man’s real name. Boyson grew up in Old Naledi, a local township commonly called “Ditakana” or “Zola”, a place synonymous with poverty, crime and drug abuse. He says in his growing he didn’t have a father to look up to but his mother was always there for him. In his senior school years, Boyson recalls the humiliation he suffered just because he was an Old Naledi child and his school mates always thought he was so poor he couldn’t afford transport money to school, so he walked every morning and evening to school and back.
In 1994, Boyson also recalls, was when he started using drugs. He was into alcohol, tobacco, ecstasy and marijuana. He used these drugs on a daily and this got worse in his rapping days as a local artist. He was one of the first local artists to perform live at the Maitisong outdoor event and this was the peak of his life then. He had so much access to money through his 5 sugar mamas that there was nothing he couldn’t do.
All this came down when he was accused of rape by a young lady friend of his. He was convicted of this crime but later on discharged when evidence found out that he didn’t rape the lady. Though she had committed a crime by lying to the Police and a court of law she was not charged with her perjury. Boyson was discharged from prison but had a bad record to his name. That together with other smaller crimes had his Police report and image tarnished.
It was only in 2013 that Boyson felt the heat of his former life when he applied for a job with the Diamond Trading Company and actually passed the interview only to not get the job. He says he was the best candidate out of a total of 26 interviewees but he wasn’t given the job. As the interview process came to a close, he was taken through a criminal screening process that revealed his entire criminal record and because of that lost the opportunity. He thought of killing himself because seemingly his life was over.
He spent days in his mother’s house not knowing what to do but had to get back up because he was determined to now make something of his life. He spent 13 days praying the Lord’s Prayer asking for mercy from the almighty. After this, he went out in pursuit of the Presidential pardon. He needed a letter from the Member of Parliament, a Pastor and the local Chief, all of whom he had crossed paths with and left a very bad stench to his name. They gave him a hard time at first but eventually agreed to write him the letters. It was in 2015 that he got his Presidential pardon from Course Cool and continued on his life journey.
Fast forward now Boyson turns 40 years today, is proud of his achievements thus far and is not ashamed to tell his life story. He is now a married man and a father of 3 children. He calls himself “BBM - The Motivator” and will stop at nothing to help change the life of any young Motswana.