First division wants autonomy

Delegates at the First Division South annual general meeting yesterday. PIC: KABO MPAETONA
Delegates at the First Division South annual general meeting yesterday. PIC: KABO MPAETONA

Members of the First Division South League (FDSL) have proposed to be autonomous from the Botswana Football Association (BFA) and to negotiate their own sponsorship.

The proposal was made at the league’s annual general meeting held at Lekidi Center yesterday.

Moving the proposal, Jwaneng Galaxy FC spokesperson, Kealeboga Ramogobya said time was now for the First Division to have its own board in the lines of the Botswana Premier League.

But the committee secretary, Sydney Magagane asked members to set aside the debate on autonomy.

He explained that the Premier League has proposed that both the First Division South and North operate under its ambit, and that a proposal was submitted to the National Executive Committee (NEC) last year. He said they expected the issue to be debated at the BFA general assembly.  The committee chairperson, Sam Keitireng said the Debswana sponsorship is coming to an end. He said the BFA is aware and they are hopeful that negotiations would resume soon. He suggested that they should be a sponsorship negotiating committee comprising of committee chairpersons and secretaries for both North and South.

“We want to be involved in the sponsorship negotiations from the beginning. We want the sponsorship to be structured in a way that it will benefit clubs,” said Keitireng.

To that point, Ramogobya wondered if teams are going to use the same playing kits that they were given two years ago when the sponsorship was implemented.

Meanwhile, Keitireng said there is a serious challenge in FDSL about teams that are not in the Premier League but should be there. He pointed out that for the past four seasons, teams from the South have failed to qualify for the Premier League in play-offs. He said that was due to lack of support from the league, adding that teams should not stay long before promotional play-offs.

“Teams should play to be in the Premier League and not force themselves into it. We have received two teams from Premier League while only one team relegated from the North. FDSL is more competitive than the North. We just have to put our house in order,” said Keitireng.

Eight teams out of the 12 that make up the league attended the assembly. Keitireng said the other teams being Notwane, Letlapeng, Black Rangers and Mochudi Rovers would be welcomed into the league in the next meeting to be held in July.

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