BFA courts Gumbo
Botswana Football Association (BFA) is preparing to offer Sua Flamingoes head coach Rahman Gumbo The Zebras coaching job on permanent basis currently held by Teenage Mpote on interim basis. BFA is yet to contact Gumbo directly about the position in the aftermath of Adel Amrouche’s failure to qualify for AFCON 2021 and subsequent resignation.
Though a number of individuals claiming to represent the governing body have enquired about Gumbo’s interest in the position, all inquiries have been deflected, for now. However, Gumbo is believed to be waiting for senior members of the BFA hierarchy to make direct contact. The Zimbabwean has resolved to say nothing publicly until he knows the BFA’s intentions. He will, however, be disappointed if there is no approach, reports further said.
Having won league titles with two big clubs in the country, and having attaining A license coaching certificate, Gumbo’s stock, without doubt, has risen. He has about 12 months left in his Sua Flamingoes contract but the ambitious club is reportedly ready to offer him extension. “Yes, we are aware that the contract is coming to an end, but it does not worry us because we still have to sit down and negotiate,” the club said.
However, reports say Gumbo believes he could extract the best from Zebras squad regularly labeled South African-class despite rarely delivering performances to match. He has also worked with few Botswana players at Gaborone United, Centre Chiefs and Township Rollers and is said to be confident that his preparatory methods and tactical intelligence would have an immediate impact.
Though he once labeled international coaching ‘an old man’s job’, saying that he would not consider it until the end of his career, Gumbo regarded his native country as an exceptional case. It is why he was in the technical department two years ago with Zimbabwe at AFCON.
“This one is special because it is not his country,” said one of his closest confidants.
“Normally you go to international football when you are older, but with Botswana or any other country, there is a different motivation, different players. It is a special country with a special culture of football. He would welcome the chance to speak to the FA about this job.”
The Botswana national team has not been active since late last year, after failing on numerous international stages. They are strategizing to give junior sides more attention to effectively make them the nucleus of the senior one. This is the BFA has roped in Mpote to drill the side and make it function with means available to him.
Big Guns for Botswana Grand Prix
The National Stadium will be lit up with fireworks on April 29, 2023, as some of the best international athletes will participate in the maiden Botswana Grand prix.
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AFRICAâ€™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 Worldâ€™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.
â€śAfrica 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.â€ť
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.
â€śThe sports economy worldwide is estimated at 5% of GDP, but only 0.5% in Africa. If exploited, Africaâ€™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.â€ť
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.
â€śPolicymakers 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.â€ť
He said supporting grassroots sports has powerful distributional effects. â€śFortunately, technology has made reaching wide audiences easier, generating higher rates of success when talent is discovered.â€ť
However, Mabiakop held that potential pitfalls must be highlighted. â€śFirst 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.â€ť
â€śPolicymakers 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.â€ť
BFA to pay Taylor P330 000
Botswana Football Association (BFA) has been ordered to pay its former Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Goabaone Taylor over P330 000 as a compensation for her unfair dismissal last year February.
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