Thursday, July 9, 2020

Rollers, GU cautioned over coronavirus

In the brink of the Covid 19 scourge that halted almost all sporting activities across the country, the Botswana Football Association (BFA) top brass is warning against ambitious clubs intending to return to training before the stipulated 10th April 2020. 

Following news this week that all football activities be put on hold until further notice by the Emergency Committee of the BFA, some clubs across the country are set to return to training ahead of the stipulated time.

In a statement this week, Township Rollers top brass headed by club President Jagdish Shah announced to its players that the “playing contingent have been given a break from training until Monday, March 30.” 

While the defending champions are set for the return ahead of the curfew, another Gaborone giant Gaborone United is set for a return on the 27th March 2020 according to the club director Nicholas Zakhem. 

The club’s statement indicates that “There is nothing we could do because this is an international problem. We consulted a lot of stakeholders hence we decided that we’ll return on the 27th,” said Zakhem on Wednesday evening.

However, THE BFA chief executive officer (CEO) Mfolo Mfolo told Sunday Standard in an interview that none of the teams will commence training before stipulated times as per the Government and Ministry of Health (MoH) requirements in protecting the nation. He said it is a responsibility of all to adhere to procedures put in place in the fight against the scourge.

“It should be understood that all football activities including training have been halted until the 10th April. We are looking at the bigger picture as we do not want any club to put anyone at risk hence it has been said we should try by all means to stay at least one metre apart,” he said.

“The reason is to minimise congestion and contact and we will only take a decision on the 10th of April 2020 on whether to commence activities and expect everyone to adhere on the measures for the sake of all,” Mfolo continued.

Asked about the league championships across all leagues if the situation takes longer than expected, Mfolo said they are yet to meet on the way forward for consultation basis. 

“We are yet to reach a stage of deciding on the league as we believe things will return to normal shortly. It needs a lot of assessment as there needs to be a lot of extensive consultations with different leagues across the region and the premier league,” Mfolo told Sunday Standard.

RELATED STORIES

Read this week's paper

Sunday Standard July 5 – 11

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of July 5 - 11, 2020.