THE ongoing Lesotho Arts, Culture and Innovation Week celebrations which began on Monday will today include a fashion show and a Chinese dance show in Maseru.
The fashion show will be held at Ouh La La restaurant with 11 Miss Lesotho pageant models showcasing traditional and African outfits among others on the ramp.
Chinese Ambassador to Lesotho Dr Sun Xianghua will host a dance troupe from China at Manthabiseng Convention Centre exclusively for government ministers and other invited dignitaries as part of the independence golden jubilee.
However the troupe will stage a free show for the public tomorrow at the same venue and those wishing to attend can collect entry tickets at the Ministry of Tourism, Environment and Culture offices at the Post Office building.
The celebrations will be capped with a musical show lined up for Saturday featuring several local acts including Sentso, Fatere, Skebz D, Sefako Sa Menoaneng, T-Mech and Stlofa at the convention centre.
The Culture Week was launched on Monday with a carnival procession from Manthabiseng Convention Centre through Kingsway to Maseru Club.
The entourage brought Kingsway to a stand-still as onlookers dropped everything to watch the scintillating performances from various local entertainers.
Two red 1990s BMW 3 Series vehicles, popularly known as “Matchboxes” led the procession followed by bikers and a horde of colourfully-dressed people including horsemen, models and school children.
Also in attendance were Deputy Prime Minister Mothejoa Metsing, ministers Likeleli Tampane (Tourism), Khotso Letsatsi (Communications) and Lekhetho Rakuoane (Home Affairs).
The spinning Matchboxes and revving motorcycles were greeted with ululating, whistling, hooting and the refrain Mokete O Teng which can be loosely translated to mean “There is a ceremony in progress”.
The march occasionally stopped to accommodate Liphotha, Mokhibo and Ntlamo performances.
All this took place along the way to the Maseru Club grounds where the celebrations were officially opened by Minister Tampane who urged Basotho and foreign diplomats to embrace the celebrations by showcasing their cultures in different ways.
“These celebrations are aimed at showcasing and promoting different Basotho cultures while also embracing the cultures of diplomats living in Lesotho for Morena Moshoeshoe once said whoever lives in Lesotho should be treated as a Mosotho,” Ms Tampane said.
“Throughout this week we are promoting tourism so we urge people to wear traditional outfits and eat traditional dishes as they also take part in the array of activities at Manthabiseng Convention Centre as well as Ouh La La.
“Tourism is one aspect that can help us overcome the plague of unemployment so let us support the creativity of Basotho and also celebrate in harmony and peace,” she said.
Minister Tampane also said her ministry was working hard to boost tourism.
“The National Museum and Arts Gallery is currently under construction and by the time it starts operating next year it will be one of the most attractive buildings on the planet. Before the end of this financial year we will have the copyrights society of artists and that will ensure they are rewarded for their work. I urge local artists to work together on electing the board and ensure it serves their interests which in turn will boost our economy,” she said.
The performances continued after the minister’s speech while she and the guests viewed the artistic creations on display.
Traditional food was served including Likhetso, Lekhotloane, Potele, Lipabi and traditional beer with the ministers and dignitaries also partaking.