Saturday, September 26, 2020

Axed!

Botswana Football Association (BFA) has opted to part ways with its employees at the Botswana Premier League (BPL) secretariat.

The employees received letters notifying them of the non-renewal of their contract this past week.

“Please be advised that your contract ending on the 31st October will not be renewed when it elapses,” read the letters dated 28th October and signed by the BFA Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mfolo Mfolo.

This comes barely a week after the association Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mfolo Mfolo denied any knowledge of the employees’ impending fate.

“I am not aware of that. The league is in transitional period we want it to separate from the BFA and run as an independent legal entity,” Mfolo said at the time in an interview.

According to sources, the employees got to know of their plight during a meeting with the BFA CEO Mfolo on the 28th of August, just prior to receiving formal letters informing them of the non-renewal of their contracts.

The staff meeting occurred less than 4 days before the BPL secretariat staff’s contracts elapsed.

At the meeting, Mfolo is said to have thanked the staff members for their service while informing them of the decision not to renew contracts. 

Allegations are that only one (1) out of the ten (10) staff members of the BPL secretariat did not receive a letter of non-renewal.

The release of the experienced BPL staff now sets the tone for the impending grant of autonomy to the BPL by the BFA.

It is said that the non-renewal of the BPL secretariat staff’s contracts was recommended by the Task Force committee that was appointed to look into transforming the league into a business entity.

The committee comprise of Jagdish Shah, Nicolas Zakhem, Kelesitse Gilika and Anthony Mokento.

“The committee that was set to look into how the league can be profitable and self sustainable strongly advocated for an overhaul of the league secretariat. They suggested that fresh and energetic business persons be roped in to replace the outgoing staff,” a source within the Lekidi informed this publication a fortnight ago.

With the BPL now having successfully formed a company to lead its transformation, the Task Force committee is said to have suggested that it is only wise ‘to bring their people who are new and share the same vision of transforming the league.’

Meanwhile, the unexpected non-renewal of the BPL secretariat staff’s contracts is said to have caught some BPL board members by surprise.

“We have never met and discussed contracts of employment of BPL staff. What is happening is ruining individuals lives for no good reason. It is abuse of powers by those who are given powers,” one BPL board member opined. 

“There is need to consult and take suggestions on how best the issues can be addressed before such an overhaul of staff can be undertaken,” the BPL board member said.

The overhaul of the BPL secretariat and the loss of jobs comes at a time when the association is heading for elections.

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