Tsabong — The longest serving former Botswana Football Association (BFA) and FIFA administrator, Ashford Mamelodi has on June 17 drilled administrators with the necessary skills and knowledge to run football in Tsabong.
Mamelodi, who is a development officer for the world football governing body for the Southern and Eastern regions in Africa, has been engaged by BFA to share skills and knowledge on football administration.
He noted that Kgalagadi region was endowed with great football talent, which needed to be unearthed tactfully with the right tools managed by the administrators of the game.
Through the five-day training which commenced on Monday, the main aim is to empower leaders of football clubs to successfully grow football from grassroots level and administer it with necessary expertise.
As such, he said the move by the BFA necessitated the implementation of the football development programme for administrators to successfully grow football.
He said there was no way that BFA would grow if aspects such as these were left behind adding that there was no way that the senior national football team, Zebras would succeed if it was not drawing from the best pool of players.
Thus he said, Zebras would not competitively challenge other countries hence the need to train sport administrators across regions to equip them with tools to be able to unearth the best pairs of legs.
Mamelodi said this could only materialise if football had grassroots leaders, who were determined to grow the game of football and were prepared to embrace change and modify how they did things in the past.
"Let's stop doing things the way we have done always before. Business as usual should stop in the way we run our clubs. The region and the way we conduct our football affairs needs to change, if they change, then football has to change," he said.
Mamelodi said administrators were crucial to football development as they coordinated all important segments of the game.
"If they fall asleep, all the other structures will collapse," he warned.
Furthermore, he said the local constituency football tournament and BFA should work together for the benefit of football, adding that for as long as they were working as separate entities it was a challenge to football development and a working relation must be drawn to grow the game.
He advised that some football clubs were not registered yet had the best caliber of players.
"For clubs that are not registered, it means they are not properly regulated, and so we cannot get top stars from them to use in our national team.
BFA can only draw players from their members and the time has come for us to work as a collective," he said.
"As long as we were too fragmented we cannot succeed. Our population is small and so we need to club together and consolidate resources to develop our football.
If we have a strong and sound football management then we can get to where we need to be," he said.
He said the tendency by some administrators who think they were jack of all trades needs to stop.
"You cannot run everything all as one being a treasure, a coach, a player, a manager all at once. We need to build our structures at lower levels," he quipped.
Kgalagadi District deputy council secretary, Lentswe Lesenyegile also called for clubs in Tsabong to come together to produce a solid team that would be run at a highly professional level.
"Tsabong is a small village but we have more than five teams, we are fragmented, how can we grow? Let us come together and build one team," he suggested.
He also advised administrators to do away with football politics as it killed productivity and focus on developing talent and building structures.
"We live in a fast changing world and it is fitting for BFA to transform football administration" said Tsabong Regional Football administration chairperson, Keleeme Bahakgametse.
He said BFA was running the training for administrators under the theme 'Operation time for change' hence the need for football lovers to do thorough retrospection to move Botswana football forward.
Tsabong South councillor, Lucky Lorekang welcomed BFA's training for administrators, which he said could go a long way in turning football into big business as it was happening in other countries and create employment.
However, he said BFA should treat administrators in remote areas with the same treatment extended to those in urban areas adding that accessibility to games and other amenities should also be enjoyed the same way.
BFA will train administrators in its 17 constituencies.
The first training began in Ghanzi and Kasane would be next on the training list after Tsabong.
Source : BOPA