Saturday, October 16, 2021

Four candidates lobby hard for BCF presidency

Four candidates vying for the Botswana Chess Federation (BCF) presidency claims to know what it takes to take the organisation to another level. 

All the candidates have gone through the ranks of the federation as national team players and some at administration level. 

Speaking in an interview, one of the hopefuls Sinky Boikanyo, said as a founding member of Dynamic Chess Club he was aware of the challenges and opportunities that come along with leading a chess organisation. 

He said having been part of the team that adopted the current BCF strategy from the Botswana National Olympics Committee (BNOC) he was suitable to drive the mission of the federation.

‘’The outgoing president tried his best to implement some of the strategies of the BCF and has done well in terms of development. It has been tough to implement some strategies due to lack of funds at the BCF and my intention is to expand revenue of the federation. We cannot only bank on affiliation fees and sponsorships. 

“The constitution allows the BCF to acquire sources of business that can make profit of the federation that can be used to push projects to assist in developing players and trainers,” Boikanyo told Sunday Standard.

Another candidate, Kefilwe Miti, revealed that despite the outgoing committee having raised the bar in local chess popularity, a lot needs to be done to the domestic game. 

‘’I want to see chess popular than ever befor; we need to increase level of sponsorships that could witness at least two meaningful tournaments every month for our players to be competitive against African and international counterparts. We also have a challenge in the selection of national teams and I believe we need appropriate structures that could in the area. It is also important that we develop the game to an extent that rating systems are assessed locally,” said Miti.

For his part, Mothokomedi Thabano who is currently in the outgoing committee said it was obvious that local chess had grown over the years and it is just all about continuity. 

He said they had developed local chess to being one of the heavyweights in Africa and will continue with the mission of nurturing youngsters that could battle against the best in the world. 

“I have been working closely with the outgoing president and we have conquered. It is just a matter of taking the baton and push for the better. We have been nominated among the best codes in the past few years and we still want to prove that we can be the best. We also want to cater for the disabled to feature in local chess and this will be implemented as soon as possible,” revealed Thabano.

Another candidate, former BCF secretary general Kenneth Boikhutshwane, said his intention was to grow the game further by bringing experts to develop trainers to guide the game to the international arena. He said the major challenge is transition of players from grassroots to internationally rated players. 

“The outgoing committee has done exceptionally well in terms of development but we need vigorous transition. We cannot afford to fall in the trap where players from grassroots disappear at some stage. We need trainers that can guide these youngsters. We have brought experts in the past and it is possible to bring them on board again to close gaps within the federation,” said Boikhutshwane.

The elections will be held in Kanye on May 27.

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