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City Polar FC CSR drive in consonance with BFA strategy – Letshwiti

RAMONAKA, Botswana – The Botswana Football Association (BFA) President, MacLean Letshwiti has praised the Kgatleng Regional Football Association division one side of City Polar FC following its recent donation of various sportswear and equipment to five (5) primary schools in the region.

The schools include Mabalane, Ramonaka, Sikwane, Kgabotshwene and Letsebe.

“I’m thrilled to witness the presentation and handing over of this sportswear and equipment by City Polar FC. Moreover, I am greatly humbled and honoured to be accorded with such a warm welcome in my home soil. We, at the BFA want to thank City Polar in assisting with sports advancement in the country,” said Letshwiti.

In his remarks, Letshwiti said everything started five years ago in his campaign with a quest to change the mindsets of football people, key to his manifesto and BFA strategy being youth development and professionalising football in the country.

“City Polar gives me the satisfaction that the seed we planted is now starting to germinate. Recently, we saw your club developing its own sports facilities and today you’re donating equipment to primary schools in your catchment area. This type of gesture speaks volumes in terms of assisting the BFA to achieve its strategic objectives,” said Letshwiti.

City Polar FC President, David Mpete

Furthermore, the Botswana FA president added, “Donations are all about giving those in need. When an individual or a group of people donates, it gives life and hope to those receiving the donations. The equipment donated to these Primary Schools is an essential and integral part of player development. It will also serve as protection and safety for these aspiring stars. This is what we call touching lives to change perspectives in sport.”

Letshwiti noted that City Polar’s largesse is an investment and support towards the BFA initiatives, adding that it will go a long way in inspiring the children in the village to choose football as the sport and career to pursue.

“As the President of the BFA, I am immensely proud to see this kind of initiative as it is an integral part of the BFA strategy, which include Youth empowerment through football, Creation of player development pathway as well as Increasing quantity and quality in football participation and development,” said Letshwiti.

This initiative, Letshwiti said could not come at a better time since the BFA is currently in talks with FIFA and Botswana Government to introduce ‘football for schools’ program under the auspices of FIFA.

“Research has shown that football development cannot be complete without the involvement of schools because children spend most of their time in schools. We believe this program will inspire youth participation in football across the country and further create a talent identification and selection platform for our Junior national teams,” said Letshwiti.

For his part, City Polar President, David Mpete said his vision is to create a sustainable football value chain where all stakeholders stand to benefit.

Mpete said this football value chain is reflected by his club’s ongoing infrastructure developments which include a mini stadium, lodge, cafeteria and encouraging the development of both girls and boys through a football academy.

BFA President Letshwiti handing over sportswear and equipments to the primary schools representatives

“This donation by City Polar is our kind-hearted way of getting kids off the sidelines and placing sports equipment in the hands of those who need it, so every kid gets a chance to play. It’s our greatest hope that when they play donning these replicas it will boost their confidence and unearth future football stars. Our area is bestowed with accomplished athletes such as Jerome Ramatlhakwana (football) and Baboloki Thebe (athletics) who continue to be an inspiration to these kids hence as a club we truly believe in grassroots development. We have to catch them young and once our facilities are complete, we will play host to schools in our area with the hope that giving them a break to play in a turf will motivate them even further,” said Mpete.

Area MP and Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Mabuse Pule said his office continues to work closely with City Polar and further encouraged them to inspire other clubs to develop their own facilities.

“It is quite encouraging to witness what Mpete, and his team are doing by donating sportswear to primary schools, a firm gesture which corresponds with the Vision 2036 ideal of Human and Social Development. I’m even more happy to see the local club developing a stadium, being one of the first clubs in the country to do so.  I will even request the minister of sport to visit this place and see how government can help the furtherance of this massive project,” said Pule.

The various donations were received by teachers from each primary schools on behalf of the students.

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Draw for historic 20th edition of the COSAFA Cup set for Thursday 17th June

The draw for the 2021 COSAFA Cup will be staged in host city Nelson Mandela Bay on Thursday, June 17 as preparations for the historic 20th edition of the regional showpiece competition kick into gear. The 12-team tournament will take place from July 7-18 and returns after the 2020 edition had to be cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The draw will be live on www.cosafa.tv from 11h00, when the fate of the competing teams will be decided.

And there will be plenty of excitement with the addition of west African powerhouse Senegal to the field this year as they make a guest appearance in what is a landmark tournament for COSAFA. The COSAFA Cup has, over the years, launched the careers of a number of top stars from the region and continues to be a major driver of football development on and off the pitch for not just players, but also coaches, match officials and administrators.

The competition will take on a new format for 2021 with the 12 teams split into three groups each containing four teams. This ensures each side will play a minimum of three matches. The top team in each pool, as well as the best second-placed finisher, will advance to the semifinals. There will be no Plate competition.

Zebras will know their opponents on Thursday ahead of the virtual draw

Senegal is the top-ranked side in Africa and sit at number 22 in the world and will make their debut in COSAFA competition. Guest nations from outside the region have, over the years, provided excellent entertainment and a contrast in styles that makes for fascinating viewing. The other 10 sides confirmed so far are no strangers to the COSAFA Cup and include hosts South Africa, defending champions Zambia and record six-time winners Zimbabwe.

Others to have booked their place are Botswana, Comoros Islands, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique and Namibia. The 12th team will be confirmed in the coming days with a number of interested parties. Those who are competing in the group stages of the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers that start in September will be eager to use the tournament to fine-tune their preparations for a shot at making the finals in Qatar.

The 19 previous editions of the competition have seen some great performances and incredible games that have been written into the folklore of Southern African football, but only five nations can claim to have lifted the coveted trophy. Zimbabwe (six wins) lead the way, followed by Zambia (five), South Africa (four), Angola (three) and Namibia (one).

Mozambique, Malawi and Botswana have all twice been finalists, but ended up on the losing side on both occasions. Lesotho (2000) are the only other team to reach the decider.   

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