BAA reveals why Makwala was overlooked


The Botswana Athletics Association (BAA) president, Moses Bantsi has justified the omission of Isaac Makwala from the Botswana National Sports Council (BNSC) nominees list.

Bantsi told journalists in Gaborone yesterday that the Commonwealth Games 800m champion, Nijel Amos had fared better than Makwala. Amos made the cut while Makwala missed out.

Bantsi noted Amos won a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games as well as the Diamond League in 2014. He said Amos, therefore has more points than Makwala.

Bantsi added that Amos, who is still recovering after picking an injury in training, is expected to be part of the 4x400 meters relay that has qualified for the Olympics Games.

Botswana National Olympic Committee (BNOC) chief executive officer, Tuelo Serufho said there might be changes to the team as it is not about individuals, but to perform well during competitions. 

Meanwhile, Serufho said there was not much the committee could do regarding Amantle Montsho’s two-year suspension for doping.

The athlete was found guilty of using a banned substance, methylhexaneamine at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games.

Serufho told the media yesterday that the BNOC found itself in an unfortunate predicament since there is no anti-doping body in the country.

The BNOC is therefore charged with handling doping issue.

Serufho said while the BNOC sent Montsho to the Commonwealth Games, at the same time it had to ensure that rules are followed. 

“We even tested Isaac Makwala before he went to the World relays, and if he had tested positive, action was going to be taken. We are not expected to hide anything,” he said.

Serufho said they did not wish Montsho’s career to face such a challenge before she retires. However, he said the BNOC is happy the law was followed to the letter.

On another issue, Serufho said nine athletes have qualified for the Commonwealth Youth Games to be held in Samoa in September.

“We have been given a quota of 11 athletes and there are two spots remaining. The idea is not to send many athletes, but to send quality. Our target is to bring more than two medals from the Games,” said Serufho.

He said the BNOC would like more athletes to qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games and at the moment seven athletes have already booked their places in Rio de Janeiro.

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