The Botswana Athletics Association (BAA) has come under attack from affiliates after next year’s calendar of events was leaked to the media, before the final document had been approved.
Clubs were shocked to see the calendar on social media platforms last week and allegations were rife that it was the final document.
Agripa Matshameko of Selebi-Phikwe Runners Club told Sport Monitor that he was surprised to learn about the calendar on social media. He said it was not proper for the calendar to be released without the consent of the affiliates.
He said affiliates should be involved when a calendar is drafted. “If they claim that it has been leaked, what have they done to rectify that mistake?
We are still in panic mode as affiliates. Clubs should inform BAA about their events which are then included in the calendar,” he said.
Sportsview chairperson, Glody Dube said he was also surprised to learn that the 2017/2018 calendar has been released. He said the normal practice is for the BAA to liaise with affiliates before the final calendar can be adopted. He said the current setup has brought confusion amongst the affiliates, including athletes. He said as a club, they have their own calendar that they have shared with the association. Dube said that is meant to avoid a clash of events.
“We are still waiting to hear from BAA to tell us when we should meet and come up with a calendar for next year. As of now, all I can say is that we do not have a calendar. Imagine
BAA spokesperson, Ipolokeng Ramatshaba said the calendar has been leaked. He said it was a mistake, which they are rectifying. He said the document was to be shared between some individuals but unfortunately it landed in the wrong platform. Ramatshaba said their intention is to start their events early next year.
“We want to have an early start because we want more athletes to qualify for the 2018 Commonwealth Games. We currently have a national team, but we would like to see other runners coming up. Clubs should not worry much about the leaked document,” Ramatshaba said.
Meanwhile, Ramatshaba said they postponed the BAA ordinary general meeting (OGM), which was supposed to be held on Saturday, due to lack of funds. He, however, said they would ensure that the meeting is held. Ramatshaba said one of the critical items on the OGM agenda is the BAA constitution.
BAA currently operates with two constitutions and affiliates say it is important that the two documents are harmonised. They want a constitution that does not serve the interest of “certain individuals”.
There is an overwhelming feeling that the establishment of a BAA secretariat is long overdue. The Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) has long acceded to the idea.