Three Dikgosi Monument

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Three Dikgosi Monument
Three Dikgosi Monument - March 2010.jpg
Year29 September 2005 (2005-09-29)
Type statue
Medium bronze
Dimensions5.4 m(18 ft)
Location Gaborone
Coordinates Coordinates: 24°38′41″S25°54′26″E / 24.64486°S 25.90735°E / -24.64486; 25.90735

The Three Dikgosi Monument is a bronze sculpture located in the Central Business District of Gaborone, Botswana. The statues depict three dikgosi (tribal chiefs): Khama III of the Bangwato, Sebele I of the Bakwena, and Bathoen I of the Bangwaketse. Events are held at the monument such as the 2008 Miss Independence Botswana. [1] A study conducted between January and August 2007 shows that the monument is the most visited tourist destination in Gaborone. [2]



Close-up of the Three Dikgosi Monument 3 Dikgosi.jpg
Close-up of the Three Dikgosi Monument

The monument features 5.4-metre (18 ft) tall bronze statues of three dikgosi, or chiefs, who played important roles in Botswana's independence: Khama III, Sebele I, and Bathoen I [3] The three chiefs traveled to Great Britain in 1895 to ask Joseph Chamberlain, Secretary of State for the Colonies, and Queen Victoria to separate the Bechuanaland Protectorate from Cecil Rhodes 's British South Africa Company and Southern Rhodesia (present-day Zimbabwe). Permission was granted, and meant that the Batswana remained under direct British rule until independence in the 1960s. [4]

Six plinths at the feet of the statues give descriptions of the three chiefs. [3]


The monument was inaugurated on 29 September 2005 by Festus Mogae, the president of Botswana at the time. The monument received 800 visitors a day when it first opened. [3]

There are objections to the monument. There was controversy about giving the project to North Korean company Mansudae Overseas Projects instead of a local Botswana construction company. [3] Some ethnic groups in Botswana see the construction of this monument as a proclamation of Tswana people dominance of other groups. [5]

The Adopt a Monument campaign attracted two private companies, GH Holdings and Komatsu Botswana, to help the Botswana National Museum manage the property. The business will provide new rest shelters and signage for the monument. [6]

See also

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Bathoen I

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  1. "Botswana celebrates 42". Daily News. 2 October 2008. Archived from the original on 23 June 2012. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  2. "Cashing In On The 3 Dikgosi Statues?". The Botswana Gazette. 21 October 2007. Archived from the original on 23 June 2012. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  3. 1 2 3 4 Seretse, Gasebalwe (17 October 2008). "Monuments worth visiting". Mmegi. Archived from the original on 22 June 2012. Retrieved 22 June 2012.
  4. Parsons, Neil (1998). King Khama, Emperor Joe and the Great White Queen: Victorian Britain through African Eyes . University of Chicago Press.
  5. Gulbrandsen, Ørnulf (March 2012). "Chapter 1: The Development of Tswana Merafe and the Arrival of Christianity and Colonialism". The State and the Social: State Formation in Botswana and Its Pre-Colonial and Colonial Genealogies. New York City: Berghahn Books. p. 29. ISBN   9780857452979. LCCN   2011037469 . Retrieved 22 June 2012.
  6. Molefe, Thato (1 March 2009). "Private sector responding to the Adopt a Monument campaign". Sunday Standard. Archived from the original on 23 June 2012. Retrieved 23 June 2012.