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Ex-sport Minister wants BFA plum post

Phillip Makgalemele

Former Member of Parliament for Shoshong Phillip Makgalemele is believed to have held wide-ranging talks with Botswana Football Association (BFA) leadership about possibilities of assuming the portfolio of the chief executive officer, this publication has learnt.

The consultative dialogues are said to have transpired way before COVID-19 was declared a pandemic. Sources speaking with WeekendSport indicate that Makgalemele, whose sport resume is second to none, left BFA leadership thinking hard about the next move.

Makgalemele served as BFA president on two spells, between 1998 and 2008, on either side of David Fani’s first term. His knowledge about the domestic game is, without doubt, top notch. Further, he has served the country as the Minister of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development, a role when blended with his quick grasp of   football politics, marks him as the best mould BFA could need from the CEO.

However, it is believed that the BFA leadership has, to this date, failed to make a strong pronouncement about the way forward. The association rational is met by certain familiar opposition from pressure group that does not adore Makgalemele’s name.

According to sources, it is claimed that they are no trappings of sport success left by the former minister despite having held influential positions before. Makgalemele is therefore seen to employing the same strategy that catapulted to him the high echelons of Botswana sport. He was the casualty of the 2019 general elections having lost his beloved parliamentary seat to Aubrey Lesaso of the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC).

While it is mentioned that the BFA leadership admire prospects of working the Makgalemele, there remains a stumbling block at the thought of the current chief executive officer, Mfolo Mfolo.

It is claimed that BFA boss, Maclean Letshwiti has hope of the man he pin pointed to head the secretariat of the association. Of late, however, pressure has been piling both on the back of Letshwiti and Mfolo. Calls were vociferous that Letshwiti should fire Mfolo and look elsewhere.

Some within the association also claim that Makgalemele’s move to the post will still hit another hurdle should Letshwiti sanction it. It is claimed that he has a tainted history with the current Minister of Sport, MacDonald Tumiso Rakgare. Sometimes back, Makgalemele successfully sued Rakgare for defamation when the latter was a sport journalist.

The CEO post is one difficult position that has given the association’s adjudicators sleepless nights from time immemorial. Except for Thabo Ntshinogang and Ashford Mamelodi, no any other CEO had managed to complete their three year tenure with the association, often times riddled by factions.

The fall of Mfolo from grace will brings to eight the number of failed BFA CEOs.  Duncan Kgame, Keith Masters, Thuso Dikgaka, Judge Mookodi, Mooketsi Kgotele and Kitso Kemoeng, Ookeditse Malesu are among the CEOs who failed to see through their contractual agreements and instead had their contracts terminated.

Mfolo is however believed to be academically astute to direct the Letswhiti’s vision. His firm grasp of principle, as witnessed at a time when Township Rollers was battling identity crisis, although ending up on a losing side, has earned him ‘screaming’ reputation. BFA says, “Mfolo Mfolo is a focused and reliable leader by his own right having worked for government for twenty two (22) years.”

He has a vast experience in Project Management, Risk Management, Monitoring and Evaluation and Quality Assurance. This resonated well with the management of BFA projects under the tutelage of FIFA and CAF. He has been involved in the circles of football as an Administrator and is credited with a Certificate in Advanced Coaching.

Mfolo was seen as an vivid administrator who is a graduate of Masters of Business Administration (MBA).He is widely versed in areas of Management, Marketing, Accounts, Economics, Finance and Company Law.

Sport

FIFA gives Chiefs a lifeline

27th July 2020
Mochudi Centre Chiefs

The world football governing body, FIFA, has given beleaguered Mochudi Centre Chiefs extension of days to peruse and finalise their paper trail in payment of former head coaches, Bongani Mafu and Philane Mabhena.

The once swashbuckling Kgatleng giant was ordered to pay both coaches or face transfer ban. The club was given the 5th of August as deadline to have paid their outstanding dues but after thorough consultations, FIFA agreed to extend to the deadline until mid-September to allow the club to sort itself out.

Magosi was dragged before FIFA sporting laws first by Mafu who claims that he is owed P 450 000. While still scratching their head over Mafu’s issue, Mabhena also dropped another bombshell. He claims that the club is yet to pay him P 121 000 as damages for his contract which was terminated.

FIFA agrees with both coaches that Magosi breached employment contracts without a prima facie contractual basis. Mafu was appointed the club head coach in 2016 but was expelled in 2018, to join Orapa United. Following his departure, Mabhena was roped in to supplant Mafu. However, Mabhena’s stay was short lived. He stayed for one year and left in January of 2019.

Mabhena claims that Chiefs, before his contract was terminated, never paid his signing on fee of P 15 000 as settlement fee. He also argues that he had gone a couple of months without receiving his wages. According to the terms of the contract, he was supposed to be paid P 15000 every month.

Chiefs has also acknowledged the outstanding salary arrears of former coaches that have ballooned to P 56 100. FIFA accuses the club for negligence and refusal to honour contractual obligations and this has brought far reaching consequences.

Should Chiefs fail to honour their promises, they are likely to be banned from signing coaches and players. They are also likely to forfeit points when the football season begins until full payment is completed.

The debts come at a time when the club desperately seeks the return of the Premier League. They were rumoured to be eyeing to buy one Premier League status to compete for grandest prizes like before.

Chiefs were relegated because of poor administration at board level. The team tried many times to professionalize but each attempt was beaten by the club’s society who appeared to stall processes.

Mochudi Centre Chiefs sporting club was first registered in July of 1974. The club was registered as a society under the Societies Act of Botswana as a football team. It is noted that the club participated in the upper league of BFA under the terms prescribed in the constitution of the association together with the confinement of the Societies Act.

Information shows that there had been numerous attempts overtime to transform the club with a view to make it more commercially sustainable and to uplift its football performances. However, such attempts threw the club into some disgruntlements, sabotage and sporadic achievements coupled with factionalism.

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Sport

Sebego, Malesu pin hopes on Appeals Board

27th July 2020

Former Botswana Football Association President Tebogo Sebego and Ookeditse Malesu have both seen their intentions to contest for BFA presidency suffer a major blow after they were vetted out by the Elections Committee chaired by Moemedi Letina.

After being asked to submit affidavits by the Elections Committee, the two were the only candidates who did not pass the integrity check. This leaves the incumbent MacLean Letshwiti unopposed at the elective general assembly to be held on August 8th, at a venue to be announced.

Sebego is said to have failed the test after the committee realised he had some criminal cases and after also having submitted a letter clearing his name from Botswana Law Society at the eleventh hour.

When contacted for comment, Sebego said he has been aware of plans to destabilize his campaigns and he wasn’t surprised to hear he has been vetted out. ‘‘I first saw the rumours that I have been vetted out and I wrote to the elections committee inquiring only to be told it’s not true and later I was told I have been vetted out. I have already met with my team and we will be appealing,” said Sebego.

On the other hand, former Chief Executive Officer, Ookeditse Malesu cried foul that he has been vetted for something that he was not aware of because investigations by DCEC are not public.
Ookeditse Malesu
“I have received their letter stating that I have been vetted out because I didn’t disclose that I am being investigated by DCEC. So does DCEC tell you when conducting their investigations? I don’t know, but I haven’t been aware I am being investigated by them and we will go the legal route and seek justice,” said Malesu.

However, a source from Letshwiti`s camp dismissed claims that their team is behind the vetting of other candidates. “We are aware that the two men pose a serious challenge to de-throne Letshwiti and we have been busy campaigning and remember Letshwiti has his own personal interests but he has declared them so they can’t blame him or claim any foul play from us.

We want to win fairly so let’s wait and see how their appeals will go,” said the source. The Appeals Committee chaired by Professor Othogile is expected to deal with the matter on Wednesday next week.

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Sport

Scouts appoint new chief scout

27th July 2020
Lt. Ezekiel Zack Malenya

Botswana Scouts Board has appointed Lt. Ezekiel Zack Malenya their new Chief Scout, following the demise of Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police  Mr.Samuel Sam Keitireng.

Lt. Ezekiel is a world renowned leader Trainer of Scout having Crawled through the Scout Ranks beginning as a humble Cub Scout to the Chief Scout.  Currently Lt. Malenya is the Executive Chairperson-Scouts in SADC region, Chairperson-Africa Region Resource Mobilisation Committee and Ambassador-World Scout Foundation.

Some of his roles include, briefing the patron(H.E the president) on development in the movement both locally and internationally, Forge partnerships with stakeholders, sign warrants for commissioners etc

Lt. Ezekiel has been instrumental in Training and Development of young people in Schools and local Communities in Botswana through Programs like Discipline Boot Camps & Study Boot Camps (Bana ba Metsi School & Matsha college respectively),RAYS- Reaching Adolescent &Youth through Scouting, STEM-Science Technology Engineering & Mathematics not forgetting distribution of Solar Study lights computers and books around the country.

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