DC tours accuses BFA of contract breach
Botswana Football Association (BFA)’s best kept secret with DC tours is on the verge of explosion if information gathered is anything to by. WeekendSport learns that the sponsors of BFA regional football are plotting to drop a bombshell at the doorsteps of Lekidi Football Center with the realization that the mother body is not honoring the contract.
As this publication was going for print, BFA National Executive Committee (NEC) was investigating the matter with the intention to engage their partners to re-negotiate possible new terms. Sources say BFA has not been working in good faith with their partners since the day the contract was signed.
However, information from BFA sources indicates that the contract with DC tours only recently began on the 1st of July 2018. Sources pointed out that BFA has tried to engage their partners over a couple of weeks but nothing concrete is yet to come out from them. It is said that DC tours bitterly complains that BFA does not engage them especially when dealing with issues of transportation and accommodation.
It was agreed that DC tours be ceded with the rights to manage BFA transportation and accommodation. BFA agrees that at some point they were booking for themselves because money is still a problem with them. Moreover BFA did that genuinely because they have an opportunity to use its own bus as provided by Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC), sources claim.
The sponsorship was launched last year July where the company was to sponsor BFA to the tune of P 3 million in 3 years. As things stand, WeekendSport gathers that the company is yet to deposit their first P1 million. The finances are to be used to run administrative issues of BFA at regional level.
DC tours are also expected to book flights on behalf BFA. The company has to carry the responsibility bearing in mind costs issues. Sources from both parties agree that finances are still a subject of discussion amongst them and once that is dealt with, the agreement will run smoothly.
BFA Communication and Marketing manager Tumo Mpatane believes this is information planted by those who hate to see the successes of the BFA. He urges all to remain calm and wait for proper details. Mpatane says the working relationship between BFA and DC tours is healthy and well managed.
“There is no truth that we are sabotaging our partners, we are aware of people who go around campaigning to tarnish the image of our game. Be informed that DC tours is our partners we are together in this journey of improving and growing the domestic game,” he said. BFA has 16 regions across the country. All including Women football play a role in who should be the President of the association. The sponsor is the first of its kind to be brought under Mac Lean Letshwiti regime.
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AFRICA’S RECOVERY: Sports as game changer
The year 2022 witnessed unprecedented phenomena. Several Africans- Gotytom Gebreslase, Sharon Lokedi, Victor Kiplangat, Tamarit Tola and many others- swept the World’s marathons records.
However, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the resulting control measures implemented in several countries, led to many high-level sports competitions being cancelled or shelved, the Dakar 2022 Youth Olympic Games was moved to 2026.
Founder and Executive Chairman, African Sports and Creative Institute, Will Mabiakop, says the inability to hold traditional and amateur sports events have had a serious effect on public health overall, including mental health, sparking a revolution whereby athletes began to talk more openly about stress, mental overload and performance anxiety.
“Africa is home to the fastest growing economies before the crisis, no longer on track to meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). COVID-19 deepened interdependence between SDGs, making them harder to achieve, especially SDG 10 (reducing inequality) and SDG 5 (gender equality_ as the pandemic had a disproportionate impact on poorer countries, and heavier burdens (such as care work) fell to women.”
Mabiakop stresses that as policymakers contemplate actions to speed up recovery and build resilience, they must argue that sports and creative businesses should play a central feature in this effort.
“The sports economy worldwide is estimated at 5% of GDP, but only 0.5% in Africa. If exploited, Africa’s sports and creative industries can offer policymakers innovative solutions. Especially, as regards job creation, and providing employment to the 15 million people entering the job market annually.”
HOW CAN THE INDUSTRY DO THIS?
By leveraging the two-for-one concept: past studies shown that a 1% growth in the economy delivers a 2% job increment in this sector (these ratios are calculated using data from 48 African countries and adjusted to the reality of the sports economy in Africa by the authors). There are between 30 and 50 job types, in sports and creative industries, respectively. These jobs do not fade away with the first major shock.
Mabiakop indicated that policymakers can use these industries to tackle multiple crises- jobs, poverty, and climate risks. Sports diplomacy- defined as communication, representation and negotiation in or through the prism of sports- has proven effective in building inclusive and cohesive societies. Moreover, sports and the creative industry can support better mental health and well-being, both important for productivity.
“Policymakers can also be true to the game by leveraging culture and tradition to celebrate identity and reap commercial value in sports, textiles and jewelry. Creative sectors allow deeper connection with culture, are not easily copied and provide great economic potential.”
He said supporting grassroots sports has powerful distributional effects. “Fortunately, technology has made reaching wide audiences easier, generating higher rates of success when talent is discovered.”
However, Mabiakop held that potential pitfalls must be highlighted. “First avoid build it and they will come policies with infrastructures denuded from the rest of the ecosystem. Like the many sports stadiums left largely unused.”
“Policymakers must remain mindful of how these sectors move the needle in human capital development. Also, align the requisite public policies needed for progress from grassroots participation to professional sports, and even to international sporting events. They should also support investment instruments to render these sectors performant.”