FRIENDS OF FOOTBALL’s campaign manager, Tariq Babitseng, is confident that his camp will prevail at the upcoming Botswana Football Association (BFA) general assembly penciled for July 28 at Gaborone International Conference Centre (GICC). Though the congress promises to be one of the toughest in a long time, Babitseng feels that his camp has done its assignment and they have no doubt that the delegates would give them a chance to change the fortunes of Botswana football.
Prominent lawyer Tebogo Sebego leads the FRIENDS OF FOOTBALL camp and he will square up against incumbent David Fani. Other people in Sebego’s camp include veteran coach Ernest Nthobelang (vice president technical) and Basadi Akoonyatse (executive member). Though most people do not give his camp a chance considering that they do not have experience, Babitseng said, “I have no doubt that we’ll be celebrating come the end of the congress. We’ve been visiting the regions to share with them what we want to bring to Botswana football and they’ve liked what we brought before them. Football needs change and we’re the ones who can take it there (Promised Land).”
While Babitseng is aware of the challenges they are facing in the build-up to the D-Day, he has no doubt that the delegates would not want to see local football suffering further.
The past weekend FRIENDS OF FOOTBALL were in Kang before heading to Maun on Thursday to finalise what they believe would turn out into a positive campaign.
“Our main aim when we come into office is to commercialise Botswana football because we believe there is a lot of potential out there. It is unfortunate that those who have been running our football did not want to take advantage of what is already there,” pointed out Babitseng.
He added that football can sustain itself by partnering with local companies to make the money for the association rather than relying on the government grant.
“Gone are the times when we should be relying on donations and pledges. Football has the potential of making its own profit. But this can only be possible if the delegates vote accordingly during the congress on Saturday,” he added.
Top of the agenda at the congress, Babitseng is expected to table a motion in which they want BFA regions to be divided into four blocks. According to FRIENDS OF FOOTBALL, this would enable the regions to benefit unlike the current set-up. “Each and every region would be able to have a representative in the National Executive Committee (NEC) where they will be able to pass their concerns easily unlike right now where they’re represented by one member. We’ll also be able to look for sponsors easily from the companies which are in the respective areas,” Babitseng told Sunday Standard on Friday.
FRIENDS OF FOOTBALL have a plan in place to change a number of things, including Promotional Play-Offs, among others. He said they also intend to introduce annual BFA and regional awards.
“We believe that there is a number of people who have been serving football but who have not been recognized for their efforts. That has to change because our football is where it is because of them. I must also point out that Fani has served his term and we need new ideas,” concluded Babitseng.