Lesotho: Elections Are Done, Now to the Real Work

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22 September 2021

The Lesotho Football Association (LeFA) held its presidential elections last weekend and president Salemane Phafane retained his post for the fifth time in a row.

Phafane polled 42 votes compared to his opponent Lijane Nthunya's seven.

It was always going to be difficult for Nthunya to dethrone Phafane but I applaud him for his bravery in challenging for the top seat.

Now that the elections are over, it is back to business. It is time for Phafane to prove why he has been re-elected to lead the association multiple times for the last 16 years.

Lesotho football has been largely stagnant with little development and Phafane must now focus on that.

Under his leadership, LeFA has built three facilities in Maputsoe, Mohale's Hoek and at Bambatha Tšita in Maseru. These are notable achievements.

There is already talk that two more grounds will be constructed in Berea and Thaba-Tseka.

Phafane has also said this will be his last term and I have no doubt that he would love to leave office after making some positive strides. Constructing infrastructure is a good move but there should be more to that if the country is to harness all its potential.

In Lesotho, it appears development is increasingly difficult to implement given that younger athletes are getting less time for sports. School schedules are tighter and longer.

When they knock off from school it is always too late or they are too tired to do anything else. They head home instead of school grounds.

This is one of the challenges that Phafane and team should contend with. They should engage the powers that be in education and policy makers too to ensure the situation changes.

If this does not happen then Lesotho will soon stop producing footballers and all the infrastructure will soon turn into white elephants.

Phafane should lead the charge and show initiative to save the sport. That way we will remember him as a hero who saved football, the beautiful game we all so love.

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