Monday, October 26, 2020

Maphorisa blames sports merger failure on egos

The sports leader’s personal attitudes and lack of honesty are blamed for failure to merge the Botswana National Olympic Committee (BNOC) and the Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC). 

The blame comes from Ruth Maphorisa, former permanent secretary in the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development.

“There was no honesty on the part of BNOC,” Maphorisa decried why the merger could not take place ten years back when she was at the helm of the ministry responsible for Sport.

“The merger failed to be realised because people were looking at themselves as to where do they fall when the merge is realised. The BNSC had no issues with merging the with BNOC, but the latter strongly opposed to the merge saying it will violate the Olympic Charter” Maphorisa recalled. 

She further said the BNOC went ahead and reported government and BNSC to the sport parliamentary committee which was chaired by Gilbert Mangole now Botswana’s Ambassador in India. 

She advised that sport leaders should at all times be objective and look at the intention of change looking at their personalities.

“What was surprising was that BNOC officials failed to indicate which Olympic chapter clause will be violated. We even gave them example of South Africa where sport is run and managed by one body. Still, they were not convinced and were resolute that they don’t want to merge the two. We ended up not putting proposals across because BNOC officials were not honest that the merger will contravene the Olympic statutes,” explained Maphorisa.

“When we changed the sport act, we were looking at managing and coordinating sport from one entity to optimize desired results. The intention was to run sport efficiently and effectively,” she explained.

Maphorisa said the idea of merger was also looking at maximizing the limited resources because government was funding both organizations’ – the BNOC and BNSC. “

The former ministry sport leader observed that had the two organisations merged, the country could have benefited immensely. 

“Look at the time lost and the benefits. The country has lost in financial resources and otherwise. What promoted the desire to merge now? What has changed? That I don’t know and we also don’t know whether those time those who opposed it will support it,” said Maphorisa. 

“So, what is new at BNOC because at the time they argued that it will violate the Olympic charter which they could not point to even during our meeting with the Parliamentary Committee chaired by Rre Mangole if I recall. The problem is we do things depending on who is likely to benefit as individuals not for the good of the organization,” Maphorisa commented on one of the Facebook posts.

The two bodies are seen to be duplicating responsibilities. Last week during the BNSC annual general meeting, Sport Minister Tumiso Rakgare was adamant he wants the process of merging to be expedite dso that it can be concluded in earnest. “When I leave this ministry, I want to leave I want the merge to have taken place. It has taken so many years and if you don’t agree” 

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