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Tributes Pour In For Fallen Football Administrator

CHAKALISA DUBE
FRAFA Women League Chairperson Neo Gabalebatse PIC KEOAGILE BONANG
FRANCISTOWN: Tributes continue to pour in for fallen football administrator and Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) activist, Neo Gabalebatse.

Gabalebatse, a renowned football administrator in the city, died on Saturday after a long illness. 

At the time of her passing, Gabalebatse was the Francistown Regional Football Association (FRAFA) women’s league chairperson. She has served football in Francistown in various capacities for more than a decade.

Yesterday FRAFA chairperson Maokaneng Bontshetse said that Gabalebatse’s death was a big blow to the football fraternity, especially women football.

“She was a true football person. She was nominated to lead the FRAFA women’s league not so long ago on account of her assertiveness and ability to mobilise. 

Her experience in the game also earned her the post. Her main vision was to see the women’s league being turned into a recognised entity just like the men’s football. It is sad that she died before the vision turned into reality,” he said.

FRAFA women’s league vice chairperson Motlalepula Bakani said, “ I started working with Gabalebatse as the chairperson in September 2018. Prior to

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her arrival, a lot of things were not being done properly. Teams were not honouring fixtures and the overall administration of the women’s league was in shambles. However, through her assertiveness, hard work and sound administration skills, she managed to improve things. We seldom had instances where teams failed to honour league fixtures under her reign. Her death is a very big loss to our league.” 

At the time of her death Gabalebatse was the chairperson of division one side, TASC, but her participation in club activities had waned in recent months owing to her ill health. She has successfully defended her position as TASC chairperson annually since 2014.

TASC secretary, Zola Moseki also said that Gabalebatse’s death was a major loss to the club.

“She was a very resourceful person to the club. She was also the voice of reason in the committee. Gabalebatse was someone who always came up with creative solutions to many problems facing the club such as strategies to mobilise funds to run the team.”

Moseki said that the fact that Gabalebatse has retained her position as the team chairperson since 2014 highlighted how many people had faith in her ability to run the club owing to her superb football administration skills.   

At one point Gabalebatse served as the FRAFA region secretary. 

She also worked as a senior administration officer in the Francistown East constituency.



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