Obama, Ye Le Le!

Obama, Ye Le Le!

First Lady Michelle Obama and her family arrived in Botswana and were given a traditional welcome. They also helped paint a mural at the future site of an HIV/AIDS clinic for adolescents.

Published June 24, 2011

First Lady Michelle Obama and her family arrived in Botswana Friday morning, the second and final country on their African itinerary. They were greeted by 25 children dressed in traditional costumes made of hide, accessorized by animal skins and shells worn on their ankles.


“Obama, ye le le,” sang the children, as they performed a traditional dance and another group of about 50 kids waved American and Botswanan flags.


They were joined by Dr. Gloria Somolekae, assistant minister of finance and development planning; Daphne Kadiwa, chief of protocol; and U.S. ambassador Michelle Gavin.


Obama’s first activity of the day took place at what will become the Botswana-Baylor Adolescent Centre of Excellence, sponsored by Baylor University’s Pediatric AIDS. HIV/AIDS is the nation’s biggest health challenge. The Obama family joined the center’s Teen Club to help complete a mural and the First Lady painted a sun on a panorama of scenes of children playing, homes and blue sky. She was reportedly reluctant to leave because there wasn’t enough time to blend the paint on her sun.



Next, Obama will speak at a women’s leadership luncheon, where she will continue to promote her journey’s theme of empowering women. In addition, she is scheduled to meet with Botswanan President Ian Khama. In the evening the family is dining at a nature park that is home to giraffes, elephants, zebras, baboons and other exotic animals.


Check out BET.com for daily updates from the first lady’s trip. Twitter users will be able to track updates about the first lady’s experiences and interact with others who are following the trip with the hashtag #youngafrica.

(Photos: Charles Dharapak/AP)

Written by Joyce Jones


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