Every Tuesday evening Shadi Modise visits many households in Botswana when she presents the Botswana television programme, First Issues.
She is therefore no stranger to many. But despite all this limelight, Shadi has made it a deliberate effort to keep her life out of the pages of newspapers and magazines.
Recently we took her out of her shell as we sought to know more about this flawless, intelligent media woman.
It is with no doubt that Shadi is blessed with beauty and that the camera loves her even more because when she presents her programme, it’s not her voice but pretty looks that draw people to watch the programme.
Q. But who exactly is Shadi Modise?
Born in a family of three and bred in Gaborone, Shadi seems to have had it easy in life. She had the priviledge to learn in one of Gaborone’s well known English medium schools, Maru-a-pula (not to say those who did not learn at the school are less privileged). From there she was off to India on a foreign student exchange programme.
“The main reason why I went for the exchange programme was to allow myself to grow as I had never been away from home. I also wanted to give myself time to decide what career path to follow as I seemed to be very confused and undecided,’’ she said as we tried to get more information out of her.
Although she had concentrated on science subjects while at school, Shadi found herself being drawn into finance while she was in India. But that was not long because as fate would have it, she found herself doing film making, a thing which was to later influence her to work in front of the camera.
Coming back after spending two years in India, she got a job in one of the advertising agencies where she was responsible for a Furnmart magazine. She later joined Flare magazine as a receptionist where after a few months she was thrown into the deep end.
“The position of a features editor fell vacant and was I was asked to step in. Although I did not have much writing experience I did my best to deliver as expected and looking back I can only smile with pride to think I prospered in those deep ends,’’ she said with a radiating smile.
But it was not long before Shandi packed her bags, this time heading for Pretoria for her degree in Languages majoring in English and Journalism.
“This time around I did not want to be far away from home because I used to feel very home sick while in India, Pretoria was convenient because it’s only a few kilometres from home.”
Armed with her degree, she came back home where her experience at Flair Magazine came in very handy as she got with Labologa Magazine as its deputy editor.
“The one year that I worked in Lapologa was an eye opener. Mind you this magazine has special projects, which does other jobs for television and radio. So during that period l also tried my hand in television, since I had studied film making while I was in India,’’ she revealed.
Her studies in film making and experience in television later landed her the role to present First Issues and she has never looked back.
“My job as the presenter of First Issues is very flexible because it s a part time job, which gives me time to run my own business. I own a cleaning company trading as Bophepha, which also supplies all sorts of cleaning material and equipment. My company also advises clients on cleaning solutions and we also intend to train cleaners.
Q. Buy why a cleaning company?
“Botswana is not a clean country at all, and if we are to compete with other players in the world we need to up our game in terms of cleanliness. We need professionals and the right resources to achieve world class levels.
“Bophepha provides niche market cleaning, at times we get jobs to clean a warehouse that has long been out of use, specialised cleaning for food areas such as cafeterias, canteens and etc. My company also supplies cleaning equipment known as KARCHER it’s a German brand. The business is doing well and with more shopping malls coming up, sure we will get contracts, the future is indeed looking bright,’’ said Shadi looking far into the horizon with a smile as if seeing the brightness of the future.
The challenge though according to Shadi is that people take ‘forever to pay as this is has negative bearings on the business.
With a thriving television career and business to run, surely Shadi should have a man in her life.
“I am engaged and to be married sometime this year. Unfortunately I would rather not disclose the name of my fiancée or give any clues.All I can say is that we have been together for close to nine years now.
“Please understand am a very private person, I prefer to keep my personal issues out of the limelight even though I work in the media industry. I don’t believe in making my personal matters known or taking them to the public domain,’’ said Shadi with a serious look on her face as if to say “enough of this subject”.