Botswana President Ian Khama’s initiative to have Football tournaments at constituency levels around the country with the aim of keeping mainly young people away from bad influence has allegedly touched the hearts of the outside world.
Donations in the form of 1000 soccer balls, 1000 boots and 500 pairs of socks have been received by Botswana’s Zambian Mission from Barclays Bank Southern Africa Regional Office, which is based in Lusaka.
According to the Public Relations Officer at the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Culture, Boniface Mabeo, the sports apparels are scheduled to be handed over to Minister Gladys Kokorwe by the country’s High Commissioner to Zambia, Tuelonyana Oliphant, at the Ministry’s Headquarters in Gaborone on 30th Thursday, July 2009.
The initiative prompted an outcry from the President’s detractors describing the move as an act of populism, without any “scientific” justification, nor proper prior planning.
For example, Dumelang Saleshando, Member of Parliament for Gaborone Central, revealed in the past session of Parliament that his Office had been inundated with complaints by some of those Constituency teams.
“It has become very difficult to deal with such issues as there are no mechanisms provided for that purpose,” said Saleshando.
Moreover, local football authorities have cautioned that Botswana risks losing its place in the World Football Federation (FIFA) if it insists on recognizing Khama’s Constituency system in spite of universal rules against such.