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Motorsport president survives coup

KABELO BORANABI
Running into trouble: Motor Sport faces a plethora of challenges PIC: KENNEDY RAMOKONE
While motorsport’s engines remain silent, there is a rumbling battle in the Botswana Motor Sport (BMS) boardroom.

The federation has never been far from controversy over the years as power struggles persist.

On Friday, a familiar foe returned as three senior executive committee members resigned.

The trio of vice president, Roseline Mamaloukos, treasurer Alida Steytler and Joseph Khengere who served as a public relations officer tendered their resignations on Friday morning and accused some members of the committee of misuse of office.

Fingers are pointing at BMS president, Kagiso Modibedi who faced a premature exit from the office. On Wednesday, in a meeting with clubs’ chairpersons, Modibedi survived a first attempt of a coup. He quashed coup talk as members prepared for a motion of no confidence. Modibedi reassured that all the differences have been put aside.

“There is no such thing that would be counter productive. We had a very productive chairpersons meeting yesterday (Wednesday). We will be engaging each other as chairpersons until the AGM (annual general meeting),” he said.

“There are clear problems in BMS, but they will be resolved amicably and I would like to assure our stakeholders that all is well and our differences have been properly addressed.” 

The association will meet in a special general meeting later this month to map the way forward. Sparks are expected to fly during the scheduled September 26 gathering, and Mmegi Sport is reliably informed that clubs want to give the committee a ‘facelift’.

“The association needs a facelift. We need fresh minds that will lead the sport. We are tired of bringing in

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the same old faces and still face the same old problems; this is not helping us grow as a federation. There is division on whether the president should stay or not, but the majority of the membership are seriously thinking that it is now time for change, and we will exercise our power to remove the current committee from office whether at the meeting or sooner,” a source said.

Mismanagement of funds and clashing egos prevailed at the troubled BMS since 2016. Instability at the association saw the Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) slapping then vice president David Mashonja with a five-year suspension.

BMS’ troubled ship sunk after then president, Simon Modisaeman was removed from office. The BNSC took over the running of the federation following an investigation by the umbrella sport body. John Carr-Hartley replaced Modisaeman on interim basis in 2017 before Lebogang Mosope was voted into office in 2018.

The latter quit his post just a year in office and Modibedi took over the reins early last year. The president's term in office is four years while the rest of the committee members are voted in annually.

BMS also faces a defamation of character lawsuit from former president Modisaeman. He is counter suing the association for defamation of character after he was brought to the courts of law in a separate matter on misappropriation of funds.

A sum amounting to P546,000 was reportedly withdrawn from the association's account without authority during his tenure.



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