Gaborone — The acting President, Slumber Tsogwane says government will continue to support different sporting codes to represent the country.
Speaking at the welcome ceremony for the senior national football team-Zebras and ladies volleyball team-Ostriches on June 18, he said the teams did not disappoint but hoisted the countries' flag high.
The Zebras recently won a silver medal at the COSAFA Cup tournament that was held in South Africa, while the Ostriches qualified for the All Africa Games.
In that regard, Tsogwane said Zebras staged a brave come back after going down 2-0 against Bafana Bafana in the first half and ultimately won the game to proceed to the next stage.
He said in the semi-finals, the Zebras demonstrated great competence and aptitude winning 2-1 against Lesotho.
Furthermore, he said by reaching the finals against Zambia, they had indeed earned their stripes, adding that their efforts were nourished through the care and guidance of their committed and experienced team work.
"As for our women volleyball team, I am informed you did extremely well in the qualifying games in Mozambique and about to resume final camp for the All Africa Games, scheduled for August 01-17 August in Morocco," he said.
Slumber said it was therefore of paramount importance that all the teams should therefore take their participation at such competitions as the best opportunity for many more things to come.
"You should keep on working hard and looking ahead whether you win a prize or otherwise. We have indeed seen new talents and we are happy to realize that a bright future lies ahead for us as a sporting nation," he said.
Minister Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Tshekedi Khama said it was important that as government they continue to look at interesting, exciting and innovative ways on how they could empower the youth.
He said empowerment of the youth was not only about funding, but it was also about developing skills, creating opportunities and allowing youth to unleash their skills.
"It's important to recognize that in a population of over two million people, there are only 14 Ostriches and 18 Zebras and this is how special you are," he said.
Khama said his ministry and federations would now make sure that athletes' welfare was well taken care off.
"What you have achieved is beyond discussion, you have made history, and we thank you, you have flown the flag high and we recognise that," he said.
Minister for Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration, Nonofo Molefhi also thanked the teams for representing the country with gusto and pride.
Both the Volleyball ladies captain,Tebogo Sejewe and Zebras captain, Joel Mogorosi thanked the government for supporting them and as a token of appreciation, Mogorosi handed a replica jersey to Tsogwane written "Slumbisto" and a ball.
Source : BOPA