The Professional Boxing Association of Botswana (PBAB) has urged the Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) to consult affiliates on the way forward post the coronavirus (COVID-19).
PBAB president, Tsietsi Kebualemang complained this week that there has been no engagement from the BNSC since the outbreak of the pandemic, which resulted in the suspension of sporting activities.
However, the BNSC this week wrote to affiliates, asking them to state their plans in order to facilitate a return to action for boxing.
Kebualemang said what is worrying right now is that it is the end of the financial year and they still do not know the way forward.
BNSC chief executive officer, Falcon Sedimo said his organisation has been communicating with some National Sport Associations (NSAs). He however, admitted that not all codes had been contacted.
“You may appreciate the challenges within which we have been operating. We would engage more as the situation pertaining to restriction of movement improves,” he said.
Sedimo also said with regards to financial requests, some NSAs have made such and where possible those were met. He added that others would be making requests as the lockdown situation improves.
Still on the matter, Kebualemang said the suspension of activities has hit professional boxing hard. He said there were many boxing matches lined up this year.
“Our calendar was drawn basing on the applications submitted by the promoters duly registered with the association for example just a day after the lockdown on April 3, Bond Boxing Promotion was to stage a professional boxing event at Boipuso Hall and (that) was postponed
Kebualemang said three of their boxers were to fight in Zimbabwe in the Independence Day boxing bonanza, which was organised by the World Africa Boxing Association (WABA) in April. He said they expected more fights to come the way of the local boxers.
“I want to advise promoters to continue talking to their sponsors so that once the pandemic ends, we get the ball rolling. Some of our boxers earn a living through professional boxing and the cancellation and postponement of events has affected them badly,” he said. Kebualemang said Tshephang ‘Gearbox’ Babui from Scud Missile Boxing Club was to challenge for the World Boxing Federation (WBF) title belt this month. Boxers from the Bond stable were to fight for national titles for the first time.
Bond Ngubula said he has lost over P100, 000 due to the coronavirus outbreak. Ngubula was to host an event and he also had boot camps lined up.
“I do not know whether to say the event was postponed or cancelled. I would know the position of the sponsors after COVID-19 period ends. My income streams are closed and I am focusing on the end of the year. At the moment I cannot think of hosting an event,” he said.
Ngubula said they had members who paid monthly subscriptions and he also conducted boot camps and wellness activities for corporates.