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BNSC declares tennis association illegal

CALISTUS KOLANTSHO
The Registrar of Societies says the tennis body failed to file returns
The Registrar of Societies has rejected the Botswana Tennis Association’s (BTA) application for constitutional amendment to increase office bearers’ tenure from two to four years. The association has failed to file returns with the Registrar of Societies for two consecutive years, and the Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) said the body was now illegal.

In a letter dated October 31, 2016, the Registrar stated that the association was not in compliance with the Societies Act 18:01 after failing to submit annual returns for 2015-2016 despite a reminder through a June 25, 2016 correspondence.

The letter further reads that the minutes that were attached to the constitutional amendment request did not reflect the deliberations and resolution taken to amend the current constitution, the percentage of members who endorsed the amendment and those in opposition.

“Some of the affiliates listed as attendees as per attendance list to the June 11 2016 meeting are not registered with the Registrar of Societies and some have been de-registered,” the letter reads.

BTA has been informed that their amendment proposal would be considered only after they have met the Registrar’s requirement. The tennis body was further advised that the current BTA constitution is in use until the proposal for amendment is approved by the Registrar.

The amendments that BTA was seeking were to align the term of office to that of the Botswana National Olympic Committee (BNOC) and that the elections cannot go on under the old constitution as affiliates have approved the amendments.

Reacting to the matter, BNSC chairperson, Solly Reikeletseng said if BTA has failed to submit returns, it means they are an illegal body.

He said the association must find a way of fixing its mess. 

When asked why the BTA was receiving its

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annual grant despite being non-compliant, Reikeletseng said they could not compromise the athletes’ future, but instead would rather withhold the administration grant.

BTA spokesperson, Shelton Benzah told Mmegi Sport yesterday that an executive committee meeting was convened last week to chart the way forward after receiving the response from the Registrar.

“The affiliates have agreed to the amendment of the constitution. Some of the agreements were unanimous while others went for a vote.  We learnt that one of the affiliates approached the Registrar citing some abnormalities in the amendments that were proposed,” he said.

He said the BTA was instructed to explain the abnormalities and that was when the application was rejected.

Benzah said it was not true that BTA had failed to submit returns to the Registrar. 

He said they have proof that they submitted returns.

“The Registrar has allowed us to continue with the current constitution. We have agreed with the affiliates to put in writing that we proceed with the annual general meeting. 

We can therefore implement the amendments that we want and at the same time meet the Registrar’s requirements,” Benzah said.

Meanwhile, Benzah confirmed that the electoral body has re-opened the nominations for the elections. 

He said the move was influenced by the decision taken by the Registrar.  BTA has set November 26 as the date for the AGM.  The AGM was supposed to be held at the end of October.



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