Gaborone based High Court Judge, Michael Mothobi who is also the Chairperson of the Botswana Telecommunications Corporation Limited (BTCL) Foundation has urged the private sector to buckle up its efforts in helping government fight poverty.
Speaking during the handing over of the Francistown beMobile Charity Marathon Proceeds last week, Justice Mothobi said that as a legal expert, he believes very much in equal human rights and dignified livelihood for all. Mothobi who is senior tribal chief in one of the wards in Serowe village said as a chief he cares much about the welfare of people than anything else.
“I am a lawyer by profession and on top of that I am chief. I believe in human rights and equality. Therefore my plea is for the private sector to intensify efforts with government in eradicating poverty in our communities,” he said.
Touching on the BTCL Foundation, he said its primary role is to uplift community lives through involvement in charitable causes. He said through their Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives, the foundation supports projects in the form of donations and sponsorships with a primary focus on health, education, sports development, arts and culture, environment and poverty reduction.
“To achieve our objectives, the BTCL Foundation is willing to partner with stakeholders that share some of our values. It is for that reason that in 2015 we partnered with Fresh Brands and other partners to organize and host the inaguaral beMobile Francistown City Marathon, whose main purpose was to raise funds for charity while encouraging a healthy lifestyle.
Mothobi said the beMobile Marathon which was first held in Francistown last year in 2015 was an astounding success. The marathon was held under the theme “City Comes Alive.” He said the marathon which managed to raise over P154 000 achieved its aim of breathing life into the country’s second city.
Giving a brief overview of the marathon, its coordinator and founder, Ben Tobedza said he together with his team hatched up the idea to start the marathon in 2014 in a bid to revive Francistown as it was becoming dull and turning into a ghostown. He said all along the marathon had been held in Gaborone and they found the need to bring it to Francistwon to revive the city.
“The Francistown be-Mobile marathon which was held in 2015 was a huge success as it managed to attract hordes of participants. We had targeted 1 400 runners but we registered 1 600 participants. All in all we had a total of 4 000 participants some of them who were not registered. Some of them just participated for fun,” said a clearly elated Tobedza.
He also said the be-mobile marathon is also very important as it seeks to contribute to the Francistown City Council 2022 vision of transforming the second city into an investment hub.
“The marathon is set to contribute to Francistown through sports tourism,” he added.
He also said that the BTCL Foundation through Be Mobile is going to continue to sponsor the marathon and this year they are even expecting to have more participants over the coming years. In conclusion Tobedza commended the sponsors for making the marathon a huge success.
The Charity Organizations which benefited from the proceeds of the marathon include the Francistown Runners Club, Realeboga Association, Tshimologo Stimulation Centre, Paralympics association of Botswana and the light and courage centre. The donations were in the form of money, sports equipment, food hampers and office equipment.