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FIFA national referees undergo fitness training

GABORONE, Botswana, May 27, 2021 – Two Botswana FIFA registered national referees, Tirelo Mositwane and Kitso Sibanda on Tuesday underwent tests at the Botswana Football Association’s (BFA) Lekidi Football Centre in Gaborone.

Referee’s Manager, Phodiso Rasetshoga said the physical fitness tests are extremely important as they ascertain the level of fitness on all the FA’s 12 FIFA registered referees, so they conform to any international duties keenly, whenever they are assigned.

Botswana top referee, Joshua Bondo has been leading the local lads in securing various   international assignments, where he officiated some matches in the ongoing CAF competitions. It is against this backdrop that the FA Referees’ Manager saw the need to sharpen the two with a physical fitness drill as they await other impending assignments.

Referee Mositwane (in green)

Rasetshoga was speaking at Lekidi Football Centre on Tuesday where two referees Tirelo Mositwane and Kitso Sibanda are yearning for a full fitness under his watch.

“There are two main aspects that we have to work on which are the technical and physical conditioning. The referees need to be aware of their tactics which includes movement in the field, applying, and interpreting the law with tutorials and live situation of a match. The other aspect is physical conditioning of our referees which is one of the core demands of a referee in an international match hence our training at this point,” said Rasetshoga.

He added, “BFA is here to deliver refereeing as we professionalize the game. The significance of physical tests is to ensure quality of the referees in the country.”

Referee Sibanda

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National First Divisions undergo Operation Time For Change drill

GABORONE, Botswana – In its relentless quest to professionalize and commercialize local football, the Botswana Football Association (BFA) has extended the FIFA approved and funded programme dubbed Administration and Management Course – Operation Time for Change to National First Division Leagues (NFDL), both in the South and North regions. The five-day rigorous training, which kicked off at Tlotlo Hotel and Conference Centre in Gaborone on Monday (yesterday), is aimed at endowing leaders of football clubs to effectually grow football from grassroots level and administer it with indispensable proficiency.

Furthermore, it is intended to achieve a renewal in terms of how football is managed at all levels throughout the country, facilitated by FIFA instructor and consultant, Ashford Mamelodi of Mamelodi Consulting. Officially opening yesterday’s Operation Time for Change for National First Division South, newly appointed Botswana Football League (BFL) Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Solomon Ramochotlhwane implored all clubs to adapt to club licensing regulations, as this will become a standard tool for commercialization of clubs and football in Botswana – a barometer also used by CAF. The course has so far been administered in all the 17 Regional Football Association (RFA) regions where over 600 graduates have been inducted.

With the BFA steadfast to commercialize football, they saw it apt to also train NFDL clubs as they act as a feeder to the elite league. In his remarks Ramochotlhwane said, “the program comes at a time when the BFA 2020 Annual General Assembly granted National Leagues being BFL and NFDL autonomy which paves way for professionalism.  As one of the milestones of becoming professional, Operations Time for Change Program comes at a time when clubs have been struggling to meet CAF Club Licensing requirements. This was mostly due to lack of Management Skills and Stakeholder Management by football administrators.

National First Division Chairman, Sydney Magagane

At the end of the program, the participants will be equipped with the Leadership Skills to enable them to perform their duties and influence the change they want to see,” and further added, “Good Governance drives success and produce positive results. Football is a sport that has been severely battered by poor governance. This comes as results of members failing to account in getting the right people to lead the teams. Planning – This is an area that has been neglected for a very long time. The time has now come for teams to have strategies to drive their day-to-day, week-in and week-out preparations on how they drive football and its activities. Communication- the greatest source of Conflict amongst people is failure to communicate, hence Clear Communication clears barriers of misunderstanding.”

Ramochotlhwane said it is therefore imminent to develop a sense of urgency around the need for change. He noted that the time for clubs to change is now hence it is necessary for clubs to do away with societal organizations mentality. “This often takes strong leadership and visible support from key people within your organization. Identify the true leaders in your organization, as well as your key stakeholders,” added Ramochotlhwane. For his part, Chairman of National First Division South, Sydney Magagane encouraged all clubs to take the course seriously as it will speed up the professionalization and commercialization aspect of Botswana football in general.

“The course intends to further train more instructors as our journey to commercialization will need more professionally equipped experts to undertake this task. Clubs are what makes the BFA and therefore starting to commercialize all clubs will bolster swift transition into the mother body,” said Magagane. The course started yesterday, Monday until Friday, June 14 – 18 for the NFDS before moving to Francistown for the NFDN on 21 – 25th June 2021.

Ashford Mamelodi of Mamelodi Consulting

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