MoESD’s dried up coffers threaten BISA team at COSASSA
Botswana Integrated Sports Associations’ (BISA) participation at COSASSA in Harare commenced, albeit on a rickety footing. Just a few hours after touchdown in the neighbouring country northeast of Zambezi, the BISA team finds itself facing the threat of being starved and being evicted from their lodging facilities.
BISA president, Joshua Gaotlhobogwe disclosed to WeekendSport that the 116 BISA athletes in Zimbabwe have already been threatened with being denied meals as the secondary school division at the Ministry of Education and Skills Development has not yet released the funds for the COSASSA team, in fact, Gaotlhobogwe contends that the paperwork for the requisition of funds was submitted on Monday morning when the team departed at sundown, the same day.
The purported MoESD secondary school unit dry coffers look set to affect the performance of the BISA team which comprises of defending champions in girls’ football, netball, basketball and the volleyball teams. Other teams at the 2015 COSASSA games include rugby, boys’ tennis, volleyball, and football.
Gaotlhobogwe contends that while the Ministry has never failed them, they are however disturbed by what appears to be an ingrained trend of organising arrangements for BISA competitions late as his association has long notified the Ministry in regard to the COSASSA aspirations long before the BISA national championships held in June.
This inappropriate fashion, Gaotlhobogwe said, has cost the country’s theatre of sports dearly as it has pickpocketed from BISA a showing at COSASSA athletics as well as the traditional first term athletics competitions in public schools.
Gaotlhobogwe says that while his 116 strong BISA team was threatened with not being given meals subsequent to his teams reception of supper after arrival and breakfast meals the following morning as they had not paid the cookery they are currently sitting on the lip of uncertainty as they do not know if their athletes will be given lunch time meals as of Tuesday a prospect that can dent the performances of his charges. Gaotlhobogwe also revealed that he has since received a call from Zimbabwe to pay up.
The BISA official said that, “we feel aggrieved that our funding has been delayed and it puts us in a testing situation since we are entrusted with the welfare of peoples’ children in a foreign country” he gloomily continued that, “we are just playing a waiting game, awaiting news from our man in Zimbabwe and funding from the Ministry because we still have not even paid COSASSA P300 a child, participation fee.”
Gaotlhobogwe who strikingly beckoned pessimism also said that they are presently haplessly grounded as apparently the Ministry of Education and Skills Development which funds their association has dried coffers and has at a point requested funds from the primary schools funding unit at the ministry and currently at the Ministry of Youth Sports and Culture.
The Manchester United defender will now focus on his club career having made 93 caps for France, appearing at three world cups and on European championship. The Les Bleus won the World cup in 2018 and Raphael Varane started all but one of France’s matches in Qatar as they finished as runners up to Argentina
With many being of the view that the state of football in Botswana has deteriorated significantly as it is no longer appealing to the business community, this was a good week for the football community. The Botswana Football Association (BFA) leadership under the stewardship of MacLean Letshwiti secured sponsorship for a combined value of P19. 3 million for the FA Cup competition and the First Division league – both South and North.