Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Ratanang issue a threat to local football

The tectonic plates that are Onkarabile Ratanang’s alleged ‘fraudulent registration’ has finally erupted and local football is now bracing itself for a possible full blown tsunami.

On Friday, Township Rollers felt the first tides of the oncoming tidal waves as its General Manager Sydney Magagane and team manager Motshegetsi Mafa were suspended from all footballing activities pending a disciplinary hearing.

The two are followed by the association’s former Regions and Competitions Manager, Setete Phuthego. The latter has been hit with ‘an indefinite suspension from all football and footballing activities.’

Now there are worries that local football in its entirety may be swept under the possibly oncoming raging tidal waves. According to Sonny Sethibe, fiddling with players registration process is unacceptable and in terms of FIFA law, FIFA would have taken the same decision to ban them.

He says as it is right now, the unprocedural registration raises many questions and many would be asking ‘when did all this begin and when will it end as it seems like it has been the order of day.’

Even if there is wrongdoing, Sethibe says the suspension of the trio may pose a threat to local football as they have been depending on it for income. He however says for Mafa and Magagane, it may not be a guillotine effect as compared to Phuthego.

“We cannot dismiss that Phuthego is holding a lot of secrets regarding the regime and other people involved in football. What we do not know is if he will be willing to put his neck on the chopping block to expose these people as he has nothing to lose at this moment in time. One thing we should not forget is that Football was his source of income and they have completely blocked that,” Sethibe opines.

In view of all the shenanigans that have been taking place at the association, he says it will not come as a shock if the list of banning increases.

“Nothing is standing in his way if he wants to spill out the data he has on Botswana football which may lead to many people being chopped. This is something we should be ready for. Ke ene a ntseng a rongwa boloi all along. Ke ene gape o ka gatogang boloi botlhe bo bo dirilweng and continue to be made in football,” he says.

Sethibe however said while the suspension on Phuthego may be correct, there may be many motivating factors which contributed. One, he says, Phuthego, may be a political move to stop him from cutting shot BFA president MacLean Letshwiti’s reign.

The duo are said to have not been seeing eye to eye following BFA’s decision not to renew Phuthego’s contract late last year. Since then, the former competition manager has been openly anti-Letshwiti and was allegedly plotting his downfall.

“This may be a political move looking at how vocal he has been about coming after Letshwiti and he in return played the ban card to save himself,” Sethibe says.

Whether this was a political move or not by Letshwiti to save himself, Sethibe said the BFA should still be applauded for the decision.

“I salute the bravery of the association in the action they have taken to ban the trio. It is an example that we need in order to fix our football. Phuthego is known for maladministration and such a character cannot be left to do as he pleases with our football,” he concludes.

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