BFA, Sebego face-off
Botswana Football Association (BFA) is breaking sweat to haul its former president, Tebogo Sebego before disciplinary committee over allegations that he has soiled the reputation of the local football body.
On Tuesday evening, Sebego who is now the president of Premier League outfit Notwane Sporting Club argued at length about the irregularities of BFA processes to charge him. The association holds a strong argument that Sebego’s Facebook comments were made by an official of the BFA and that the posts violated the rules and regulations of the association on the conduct of officials; what they may not say or do.
However, informants told WeekendSport that Sebego gave the association a torrid time, arguing that the BFA NEC has usurped the role in the functions of the committee. Sebego who is also credited for building the BFA constitution reasoned that the association has unlawfully prescribed the conduct of the proceedings. Furthermore, the Notwane president contended that the disciplinary committee has not received a complaint from the BFA (NEC) as contemplated by article 116: (2).
Interestingly, the BFA DC agreed with Sebego’s arguments that the BFA should have first involved the chairman of the DC on the matter. The argument of the DC, together with that of Sebego is that the investigations regarding the Notwane president should have been carried before proceeding to charge him. It is said the association strongly believes that inquiries have been thoroughly carried out and the proof lies conspicuously within the charge sheet.
It turns out that the DC dismissed the BFA arguments and guided them to follow process. Understandable, the association is eager to appeal so that the case can be comprehensively argued. BFA, as led by Mac Lean Letshwiti sternly believes that the Facebook posts were made by a president of a football club that is affiliated to the BFA, and which club is therefore a member of the BFA as defined in the constitution.
Having understood that position, BFA says article 9 of the constitution obliges officials of the BFA to observe, among other, the statutes/constitution, regulations, directives, decisions and the code of ethics of the BFA in their activities. BFA says its codes of ethics apply to conduct that is seen to be damaging the integrity and reputation of football. This, according to legal advisor, the article mentioned applies to all officials, in this case is Sebego.
It is further mentioned that all officials are obliged to commit to an ethical attitude, to behave in a dignified manner and to act with integrity. The code of ethics, which Sebego has allegedly contravened, is so strict that the breach of it will sanctioned irrespective of whether or not the conduct complained of was committed deliberately or negligently. Sebego once wrote, “You smoke out spineless leaders through court process…I told you all about this evil man. I warned football about him. He lacks self-esteem and uses dirty tricks all the time.”
It is further believed that referring to BFA officials as ‘coward’’ a spineless leader” an evil man; one who lacks self-esteem…all appear to be clear violation of article 3.7 BFA code of conduct. BFA notes that an official who, as it were, vents out in rage in the manner shown in the quote Facebook posts fail to honour the agreed procedures for communicating their dissatisfactions- a violation of article 3.14 of code of conduct.
Sebego is expected to argue that BFA has no social media policy Guidelines to deal with issues of this nature. The former BFA boss is anticipated to argue that the Facebook comment in question is jointly operated by him and his wife and some of the posts were crafted by the wife.
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It’s do or die for Zebras
The senior national team, the Zebras, is currently in Equatorial Guinea to for an African Cup of Nations Qualifiers tie. Before they departed, the team’s coach, Mogomotsi Mpote, had his troops train in Morocco. This was through the agreement between the two countries.
The agreement between the BFA and the Fédération Moroccan Football Association states that the two nations will work together to organize friendly matches between their respective national teams. It also allows the establishment of football camps for the youth categories (U-15, U-17, and U-20), this includes women’s national teams.
The national team has played over 180 minutes in its two qualifying matches against Tunisia and Libya. Currently, the Zebras, Lesotho and Liberia are the only teams that haven’t scored yet in the competition (this is correct by press time on Friday).
Before the match against Equatorial Guinea match, the local boys who were once known as the whipping boys of Africa in the early 2000s, were languishing at the bottom of the log standings in group J. They lost their first match away to Libya on June 1, 2022. However, they managed to salvage a point against Tunisia last year.
Before the team left for Equatorial Guinea, coach Mpote urged his players to focus on keeping their hopes of making a return trip to the AFCON finals alive after an 11 year absence since the maiden appearance in 2012. He noted that they would not allow their opponents to score and would ensure that they would get a draw.
Despite the various changes that have occurred in the two countries’ football landscape, the two teams have only met once before. In 2010, the local boys defeated the Equatorial Guinea team in a friendly match, which ended in an emphatic win for the visitors. Since then, the two sides have realised different fortunes in FIFA rankings, with Equatorial Guinea ranked 51 places above the Zebras.
Meanwhile, in their last six games, Guinea has only managed to win one of them. They drew with Rwanda and Togo in September 2022 friendlies. They have found the back of the net just twice in their six games. On the other hand, the Zebras, won one match against Zambia and lost four on their way to finishing at the bottom of the group with four points. At the conclusion of their previous AFCON campaign, the local boys traveled to Zambia and secured a draw.
Despite the recent results of the Guinean team, which have only managed to draw with Rwanda and Togo in their last six matches, coach Mpote is still confident that his team will perform well against the hosts.
According to the head coach, the local boys have the necessary skills and resources to perform well against any country. He noted that the team’s coaches have been studying abroad to gain a deeper understanding of the various aspects of football.
“Tactically they should also be ready. We need your (Botswana fans) usual support, when we come back from Equatorial Guinea, we will go to Francistown, and we will need you. You are our 12th player, and you are very important to us.”
OBED ITANI CHILUME STADIUM CERTIFIED
This week, the Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) Tuelo Serufho revealed that the Obed Itani Chilume Stadium will host the return leg of the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier between the local boys and Equatorial Guinea. The venue had initially failed an inspection test conducted by the Confederation of African Football (CAF). However, following the completion of the necessary works, the stadium was allowed to host the match.
According to BNSC Chief, Tuelo Serufho, the various requirements that the stadium must meet included having a designated parking area for the media and spectators, as well as having signage that will guide the spectators. He also noted that the venue now has a world-class media area.
Jagdish Shah rejects Rollers society
Township Rollers, one of the country’s most decorated football clubs with 15 premier league titles, is finding itself in a precarious situation as its long-term chief financier, Jagdish Shah, threatens to dump them if the society does not bow down to his demand of forfeiting their 20 percent interest in the company.
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Orange injects P350 000 into Phikwe marathon
Mobile network Orange Botswana is committed to supporting the development of local sport. Through its sponsorship, the company will be able to promote and market the sport. According to Maano Masisi, the company believes that sport can unite people from different backgrounds.
He stated that through the sponsorship of the marathon, the company will help promote healthy lifestyles and unity among the people of Selebi Phikwe.
The Selebi Phikwe Marathon is scheduled to take place on July 29, 2023. It is expected that it will attract international, regional, and social runners. A total of P216 000 has been allocated for the prize money for the first ten places in the 42.2 km race. For the 15km and 10km races, the LOC will give away prizes to the first five places.