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Triumphant Letshwiti calls for peace

MQONDISI DUBE
Maclean Letshwiti is the new Botswana Football Association (BFA) president after nudging Tebogo Sebego in a tightly contested election on Saturday
Maclean Letshwiti is the new Botswana Football Association (BFA) president after beating Tebego Sebego 32-28 in a re-run of a closely fought contest on Saturday. He immediately called for an end to the infighting in local football.

Letshwiti’s camp won five out of the seven national executive committee (NEC) posts on offer.

The Sebego camp took an early lead when Susan Montsho (33) beat Tapapiwa Gaebolae (22) of Team Letshwiti and Theresa Hirschfield (5) from the Mantswe camp.

There was a tight contest in the race for the three ordinary additional member posts after there was a tie between Eatametse Olopeng of Team Letshwiti and Olsen Mantle from the Sebego camp who both polled 26 votes, while Masego Nchingane (Team Sebego) and Senki Sesinyi (Team Letshwiti) both received 27 votes to confirm their places. The re-run saw Olopeng triumph 33-27.

Other candidates in the race for the ordinary member position were Ookeditse Malesu from Team Letshwiti and Abel Monnakgotla.

The tide continued to shift when Marshlow Motlogelwa (30) beat Tariq Babitseng (25) and Ngele Ngele (5) for the post of second vice president as Team Letshwiti began to assert its dominance.

It became apparent the day belonged to the Letshwiti camp when Segolame Ramotlhwa (29) bagged the first vice president position ahead of Basadi Akoonyatse (26) and Dickson Gabankgosi (5).

The initial vote for the presidency saw Sebego receive 24 votes, trailing

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his main rival, Letshwiti by four votes while the third contender, Solomon Mantswe managed only six.

This necessitated a run-off as the winner was supposed to garner 70% of the vote. The first presidential result meant Mantswe was eliminated as Letshwiti and Sebego went for a second round. In a tense count, Letshwiti edged Sebego 32-28.

“The winner today is not me but football. The first thing we need to do is to have peace in football.

We are all football people and we need to stop the infighting for the benefit of our football. Leading football in Botswana is a very difficult challenge and I should take this time on behalf of the new committee and thank Tebogo Sebego and his team for the sacrifices they have made for the local game,” reacted Letshwiti after his victory.

Sebego was gracious in defeat.

“We put up a good fight. The better team has won! I have accepted the results gracefully.

I am indebted to your prayers and all the support and prayers given to me by Batswana. I wish Rre Letshwiti success in his reign as the president of this great movement.”



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