Thursday, October 28, 2021

BFA takeover of First Division sows confusion

BFA NEC to manage NFD league, disburse Debswana sponsorship funds, source new sponsorships and partnerships…

“Did BFL shareholders meet, resolve to cede their responsibility”? – BFL board member asks

BFA to meet clubs to explain new arrangement before league season commences 

By Duncan Kgangkenna

Botswana Football Association National Executive Committee (BFA NEC) is said to have lost focus and wallowing in confusion. 

This comes after BFA issued a statement on Monday that it had accepted the request to retake the administrative operations of the National First Division League (NDFL) from Botswana Football League (BFL).

According to the BFA press statement, the request had come from the BFL and ‘was borne out of the realisation by the BFL that it will be in the best interest of both Premier League and First Division teams to put systems in place at the BFL before taking responsibilities of running the NFD which composes of 2 divisions with 24 clubs sprung across the vast countryside.’ 

“The BFL is also in the process of setting up a fully-fledged organisation which will be responsible for its daily operations,” the BFA statement reads. 

Commenting on the statement, one BFL board member said the latest development raises a lot of questions. “The question is has the BFL shareholders met and made a resolution to cede their responsibility? When? How many were in attendance? Is the BFA taking the responsibility of a company?” he asked. 

As far as he is concerned, there is no how the BFA can take the affairs of the BFL as a company. “This is against the BFA general assembly resolution that had agreed to the then premier league to form a company. The motion was discussed and accepted by the BFA assembly. There is no one who can go against the BFA assembly as the supreme decision-making body in football. No structure can go against that authority. This is fraud from the onset,” he charged.

“There is no how first division can sit in BFL as shareholders and discuss its operations when their operations are not with the BFL. How is that going to happen. This is just confusing and it has a huge legal bearing on football operations,” the BFL member observed. 

He went on to allege that the BFA decision has a bearing in the constitution and they need to explain it. “The statement raises more questions. The route they have taken lacks foresight,” he observed.  

In its statement, the BFA explained that the arrangement will result in the BFA NEC through the Competitions Committee being responsible for the managing of the NFD league, management and disbursement of the Debswana sponsorship funds, sourcing of new sponsorships and partnerships, welfare of the match officials, disciplinary issues arising from the matches played within the League, registration of players and affiliation fees. 

Concerned BFL shareholders also wondered how they are going to bargain when approaching sponsors because from what the BFA is saying, the BFL cannot say they have 24 teams from NFD on their side because BFA has taken them from them.

The other thing that was questioned is that according to the BFA statement, ‘the NFD clubs will remain part of the BFL setup to the extent that they will continue to have representation at the BFL Board of Directors and be able to attend the BFL Annual General Meeting. The NFD will continue to be represented at the BFA OGA as per the BFA constitution prescription.’ 

Board members are now wondering which BFA constitution will they be using because the BFA constitution was illegally changed and will not allow any first division representative at BFA assembly. 

The BFA is expected to meet all NFD clubs to explain the arrangement before the league season commences.

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