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Moving in the right direction

On behalf of the Botswana Football Association and the football fraternity and indeed the supporters of football, I’m extremely honored to accept, on their behalf, this great sponsorship from an equally great partner of football, Debswana. It is with great gratitude and a sense of exultation that once again football gets bestowed with the privilege of being Debswana’s partner through the First Division Sponsorship for the 2016/2017 up to 2019/2020 season to a tune of P2m per season.

This is an extension of a relationship that started way back in 2013 when Debswana first sponsored our National First Division League, a relationship that stretched for a period of three seasons up to the end of the 2015/16 season. Debswana has over the years demonstrated its commitment and support to sports development in Botswana and as football we have been a long standing beneficiary of this benevolence. My firm believe is that, this is a clear indication of a company that has an extremely strong bias in investing (through development) within the society that it does business in and through a broad based approach when one looks at the reach of football.

This support has been sponsoring grassroots development, availing of sports facilities for use by local communities, federations and teams amongst others. Football is also a direct beneficiary of Debswana support through the Re Ba Bona Ha programme under the Botswana National Sports Commission.

Most recently and closer to home (As in football) we have seen a resurgence of football teams in the mining towns of Jwaneng and Orapa (Boteti) area. This has been as a direct result of visionary leadership as well as resources and facilities support to Jwaneng Galaxy and Orapa United with the latter winning the Mascom Top 8 and finishing in the Top 4 in the beMOBILE Premier League. The former remains a solid mid table team which in my view will soon be competing for honours alongside Orapa United. Professionalism is not only about lots of money, but about having the right structures supporting the vision that clubs have. Not only has this brought joy to the communities of Jwaneng and Orapa/Boteti, it has also demonstrated that pooling of resources in our localities can result in successful endeavors and what better ways to demonstrate that than through football and the leadership of Debswana.

As the football fraternity, we should not lose sight of the fact that companies and Debswana in particular will only sponsor those associations or entities that share similar aspirations in terms of development. One would take this opportunity to underscore the word sponsorship and remind everybody that the days of going around looking for donations cap in hand are over. Given competing socioeconomic interests, the sponsor’s pool has become smaller with the recipients growing in number and therefore implying that the more deserving are most likely to get consideration. A sponsorship by its nature implies a symbiotic relationship in which shared objectives as well as individual objectives of the two entities are met. In simple terms, the rights that go with being sponsored come with responsibilities or obligations. This is even more so in these difficult economic times which have seen other companies withdrawing or scaling down on their sponsorships. It therefore says to us that we are privileged but most importantly there is value that Debswana sees and it is for us to use the sponsorship as a vehicle to extract that value for the benefit of footballers and the community at large and of course our two organizations. At the summit of these obligations lies good corporate governance, which as bed rock of our partner’s culture and operation, it is imperative that we mirror that and show that indeed we are a worthy partner. I must at this juncture, draw our attention to the fact that football’s image over the last year of so has suffered greatly and there is urgent need to restore the market’s confidence in our brand. I would like to assure not only Debswana, but the market at large that we embrace the challenge as the new National Executive Committee and this sponsorship gives football an opportunity to redeem itself in the eyes of the corporate world as a worthy partner. We have accepted the challenge and we will rise to the challenge and we say to the nation, football is bigger than all of us and therefore we need to work in servitude in order to restore the lost glory.

One of the key areas of focus for the incoming NEC is that of development. This sponsorship therefore comes at an opportune time as it will provide us with the impetus to ensure that all variables contributing to development are addressed as a matter of urgency. The First Division is the stepping stone to the elite league and therefore it is viewed and acts as a bridge between developmental leagues and the elite (premier) league given its vastness and the level of competitiveness. We remain forever indebted to Debswana for having seen it fit to sponsor the National First Division League and therefore playing a critical role in football development.

I would like to once again thank the sponsors, Debswana, for the great gesture and most importantly for having chosen football as a partner and promise them that we shall not disappoint. A professionally run league, with timeous updates and maximum media exposure (positive) for Debswana shall be the order of the day. To the media and football fans, Debswana has thrown down the gauntlet, and are up for the challenge? Because my committee and I are!!!!

Thank you Ladies and Gentlemen and have a great afternoon.

BFA President, Maclean Letshwiti

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BFA and FNBB launch partnership

Botswana Football Association and First National Bank on Thursday launched a 3-year Sponsorship worth 3 million Pula.

Speaking at the launch, FNBB CEO Steven Bogatsu highlighted that Like many of economies around the world, Botswana is grappling with youth unemployment.

“It is upon us and government to help with this unemployment, ” said Bogatsu.

He says FNBB has committed to help junior teams through the 3 years sponsorship.

This is the second initiative to sponsor youth as in June FNBB partnered with tertiary schools. Bogatsu went on to say that even though they didn’t have the budget they found it fit to look for funds to help these teams. He said their decision was inspired by the BFA’s strategic plan to improve local football.

When taking the centre stage, BFA President said Football is about partnership. It’s about human development, it’s the property of the state. To improve the sport all partner must be involved. He welcomed the commitment of FNBB as it will be a major assistance towards the junior teams.

Letshwiti highlighted that cooperate companies must continue coming to football to market themselves and to ensure the growth of sports and their different brands

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