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First division north commences


Following last season’s thrill in which both Kazungula Young Fighters and Tafic Sporting Club missed by the skin of teeth the playoff spot, first division north is once again anticipating a much more competitive and interesting league this season. The league will commence on the 5th of September.


For the past three seasons, first division north has claimed the bragging rights over their southern counterparts as they have managed to send two teams each season to the elite league. They want to continue the same feat this time around, more especially that the teams in that division are said to be more “serious” and ready to compete for the premiership spot, this has left the league officials in ecstasy.


In an interview with WeekendSport, First division north chairman and representative at BFA Eatametse Olopeng said they have prepared everything and are expecting to finalise the remaining logistics very soon. “We are expecting teams’ grants so that they can start to budget practically with something in their accounts, some teams have started buying their new kits and will claim their monies later.

The kits will be branded by BFA as you know it is an exorbitant process”, he said. Last season the league had to stop unexpectedly with the teams crying about financial despondency “as grants were too little to sustain them” but this time around they have managed to rectify that lapse and disburse P50 000. Referees have been also assured that their welfare will be well taken care off to curb possible disasters of match fixing.


Last season’s third placed side Kazungula will be launching the league with a tricky encounter against the relegated Francistown side Ecco City Greens in Kasane. The tourism capital based side Kazungula, which is dominated by the youthful players, will face their real litmus test against Ecco to see if their ambition of elite league promotion will materialise.

Kazungula, which last season boasted of being the only side to win a match against Miscellaneous has made their intentions clear that they want at one point to host the premier league in Kasane.

Unfortunately they will have to sweat if at all they want to make their history as they will face much competitive teams like Ecco, Tafic, Tsabotlhe from Serowe, Mahalapye Hotspurs as well as the newly promoted Sowa Flamingos. “The competition will be very tough I am impressed that most of the teams were in pre-season this shows that they are taking this season very seriously”, the chair stated.


The northern division has welcomed two teams; Real Movers from Selibe Phikwe and Sowa Township’s Flamingos. From the two teams the Sowa based side which is supported by the Ash mine has already sent warning signs that they will not be participants but competitors.

Some of the be-mobile premiership players are already linked with the team, former Extension Gunners defender Kerapetse “Mampudi” Mosimanewakgosi and Motlakase Power Dynamos striker Lapologang Motlogi are reportedly likely to sign with the team. Should the Sowa side pull a coup like what their mine brothers did, the league is likely to be more exciting and competitive.

“This league will be interesting and the newly promoted side, I believe will also compete”, Olopeng stated, referring to the Sowa side. Another advantage for the team has been that it will tap in the talent from surrounding areas like Dukwi, Mosetse, Gweta and Nata where there are no teams while there is talent.

FIRST DIVISION SOUTH

Attempts to understand the progress for the first division south from the Chairperson Samuel Keitereng did not materialise. However, according to Olopeng, the issue of Notwane and BFA over dragging football matters to court which is yet to be put to bed is the only stumbling block.

The southern side was to start the league next weekend but they are still waiting for the judgement. Pundits are however asking why the season hasn’t commenced yet, so that whichever side gains promotion finds the league in progress. Tough competition is expected among big teams like Mogoditshane Fighters, Modipane United and Black Forest that are set to light up the league.

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Finally, sponsors jerk BFA

30th January 2023

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.

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Clubs petition Zackhem, Jagdish Shah

23rd January 2023

Some disgruntled Botswana Football League (BFL) shareholders are planning to petition the BFL board led by Gaborone United director and chief financier Nicolas Zackhem and his treasurer Jagdish Shah. Furthermore, they want to challenge the Botswana football Association (BFA) leadership over the deteriorating status of football in the country.

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P80 million windfall for BFA

9th January 2023

Botswana Football Association (BFA) is poised to benefit from FIFA’s forward development programme. The Association will receive over P80 million to be used during the course of the next four years, as the world football governing body is strengthens its commitment to building a stronger foundation and the growth of football.

The Forward 3.0 funds – to be accessed by all 54 CAF members for the next four years have seen an increase of USD 2 million compared to Forward 2.0 cycle and Forward 1.0 cycle when the programme was launched.

According to FIFA President Gianni Infantino, the third cycle of the programme will be launched this month and it will dedicate more financial resources than before to developing football nations as there is an overall increase of approximately 30% compared to Forward 2.0.

“It is vital that we are now strengthening our commitment to building a stronger foundation for the growth of football,” Infantino noted.

The 62 page report by FIFA-Forward-Development-Programme-Forward-3-0-regulations also reveals that for travel and equipment, each member association, subject to compliance with the regulations, will receive an additional USD 1 million to cover the cost of travel and accommodation for their national teams. It further states that the remaining funds may be used to cover the cost of travel and accommodation for domestic competitions organized by the member associations.

“A contribution of up to USD 200,000 for the four-year cycle (2023-2026) to cover the cost of any football equipment related to the training of players and organization of matches (e.g. full kits for the national teams, balls, mini goals, bibs, substitution boards and referees’ communication systems) for those member associations that are identified as needing the most assistance,” the report indicated.

FIFA President, Infantino and his team said the member association is identified as needing the most assistance, for the purpose of the contributions, where their annual revenues (excluding Forward Programme funds as well as funds from any other FIFA programme/ initiative) do not exceed USD 4 million as the figure shall be reflected in the latest annual statutory audit report submitted to the FIFA general secretariat within six months after the closing of the relevant financial year.

Nevertheless, the contributions for travel will be released in four equal installments of USD 250,000 each in January every year, whilst those for equipment will be released in four equal installments of USD 50,000 each in January every year provided that the member association has fulfilled the conditions.

For the specific projects – in the case of Botswana and Namibia – there is an ambition to host the AFCON 2027 and if the joint bid succeed, the two nations will need to build new stadium to meet the requirements of CAF as the Bid technical committee has alluded before; therefore the two associations could make an appeal for extra funds to FIFA.

The report further says where a member association uses funds allocated for specific projects to improve or build new football infrastructure for its direct benefit or for the benefit of another entity (e.g. regional associations or clubs), the member association shall also provide, as part of the supporting documents, the FIFA general secretariat with the relevant national land registry certificate or extract confirming that the member association or the other entity is the owner of the land or the agreements confirming the donation, transfer or other form of provision to, or use of land by the association.

When contacted for comment, local sports analyst, Jimmy George said; “Ours is more a lack of vision, than money to finance programs. Regrettably when you lack vision not even USD 8 million can bail you out. Its pity the funds might be used to pay for the past projects that have yielded very little success.”

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