BY GODFREY MOWANENG
Failure by the Botswana Football Association (BFA) to include an articulate performance related clause in national football team Head coach Major David Bright’s three year contract is allegedly hindering the association top brass from axing him.
The gaffer has been under immense pressure and media reports were bound that he will be relieved of his duties following a string of poor performances by the Zebras. However, it appears that the association will have to stick with Bright for a long time as any termination of his services will cost the BFA thousands of Pulas.
Despite a failure by the well travelled Bright to take Botswana to her second appearance at the Afcon Championships, as per the expectations of the BFA, sources say the association has realised it will breach labour laws and incur massive costs if they terminate Bright’s contract, hence a hesitation in shoving him off the door.
“It seems there is a loophole in the contract that may lead to the BFA losing lots of monies to the coach due to labour laws,” a source told Sunday Standard.
Under the tutelage of Bright, Zebras has performed dismally and failed to qualify for the 2019 Afcon championships slated for Cameroon. Since taking over as the Zebras coach in 2017, Bright has floundered and he has failed to spark a fire in the Zebras camp.
His first assignment at the helm saw him lose back to back matches against Bafana Bafana of South Africa in a CHAN championship qualifier matches played at the Francistown Sports Complex and Moruleng stadium respectively.
Despite improved performances thereafter in the group stages of the regional 2018 COSAFA challenge in South Africa, it was back to the ‘new normal’ for the Zebras in the ongoing 2019 Afcon qualifiers where they have since failed to record a single win.
Of his four Afcon qualifier outings at the helm of the Zebras, Bright raked in three losses and a single draw, the latter coming against Burkina Faso. The Zebras’ last game of the qualifiers, which is now just a mere formality, is slated for March 2019 against Angola.
“Following the disputed axing of Stanley Tshosane in 2013, the BFA incurred a lot of financial burden which they are still to fully settle yet. They are not ready to find themselves in yet another expensive exit package settlement,” the source revealed.
“The situation is not helped by the fiscal status of the association, which, as we know is BFA is in the red financially. Sacking Bright will force the BFA to part with large sums of money they cannot afford,” insiders told Sunday Standard.
While it was reported that Bright’s last appearance in the Zebras colours will be against Angola in March 2019, BFA Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mfolo Mfolo told Sunday Standard that Bright remains the Zebras coach and it is only right to say they are still contracted with the coach. He said it is only confidential and critical to protect both the coach and the association in matters that involve labour matters.
“There is nothing much to talk about as assessments of the national team will be made after the Afcon qualifiers campaign. It is true that the coach made a commitment to qualify for 2019 Afcon championships in Cameroon. There are specific performance requirements in contractual agreements and also labour laws are of major importance,” Mfolo told Sunday Standard.