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Gunners battle to clear P1.8m debt

MQONDISI DUBE
Gunners fans have been asked to bail out their club
Despite commanding massive support across the country, Extension Gunners find themselves battling to clear a crippling P1.8 million debt. With a new committee in charge, there is a fresh air of optimism sweeping across Peleng, spreading across all corners of the country where the club has undoubted presence.

The committee faces a daunting task, to clear the debt accumulated over the years.

New club chairperson, Tariq Babitseng has promised to wipe out the deficit in the first three months in charge.Babitseng and his new committee assumed office two weeks ago, following an elective annual general meeting. He is banking on support from the loyal, long suffering Mapantsula fans to ensure that the P1.8 million is raised.

The former Botswana Football Association (BFA) vice president said most of the debts are at litigation stage, and they are keen to engage the creditors, with a view to arbitrate. “We have inherited a negative balance. Most of the debts are at litigation stage and date back as far as 2012. We are keen on engaging the creditors in order to have a way forward,” Babitseng said this week.

The club, despite its stature as arguably the best supported, has remained without a sponsor, and Babitseng has identified fans as key towards settling the debt. “We have no sponsor at the moment, we are looking up to the

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supporters to cushion us.  We will plead with supporters to pledge anything and our process will be very transparent,” he said.

Talks are ongoing with potential partners, as the club engages on another attempt to return to glory days.Silverware has continually eluded the black and white outfit, with most sides in the BTC Premiership moving ahead of Gunners in the pecking order.But for the club to be successful, it has to clear the debt first and then move forward.

“We have contractual obligations, and the ‘motho le motho kgomo’ strategy should assist us.  I can put my head on the block and say we will clear the P1.8 million debt within three months,” an optimistic Babitseng said.

Gunners’ financial woes have a telling effect on the pitch as the team slid out of the top eight last season, and missed out on the lucrative Mascom Top 8 competition.

But the new committee, cautious of the fact that the team had no pre-season and lost a key member in Mothusi Cooper, want a top eight finish.



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