Funeral scheme torches fierce karate exchanges

David Mathe
David Mathe

The funeral scheme for the Botswana Karate Association (BOKA) has torched fierce exchanges between members of the current and past committees, as the status of the initiative remains unclear.

Former BOKA vice president (administration), Lere Basupang now treasurer, has weighed in the raging exchange, saying the scheme is still at consultation level.

Basupang told Mmegi Sport yesterday that BOKA held a meeting with instructors and managers in July 2014. She said the aim of the meeting was to share the committee’s implementation plan and they wanted the affiliates’ buy-in. She said the funeral scheme and licence books were part of the items discussed. She said the scheme was meant to benefit karatekas, but the committee had not concluded the process because they were to agree on how the scheme would operate.

“The consultation was done before we identified an insurance company that would provide the service. Those who were present at the meeting embraced the idea. The challenge that we faced then was who was eligible to be covered and who would spearhead the initiative when the committee left office,” she said.

Basupang said the agreement was that there should be continuation even after another committee had vacated office and the scheme should be constituted in the policy.

She said they were yet to approach a company that has worked with affiliates before for advice. Basupang said the other challenge they faced was what happens when a karateka left the sport.

“We had to agree as who will be paying the subscriptions. Will BOKA be paying from the Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) grant or parents would be paying for their children? It is a long process that we are currently working on,” said Basupang.

She said premiums were not paid to any company because the process was not completed. She said all stakeholders are yet to be brought onboard. She said when the process was about to be concluded the previous committee was kicked out of office.

Basupang said the current committee intends to present a conclusive idea during the upcoming BOKA general meeting in April. She said the association is developing BOKA licence books which would be used as a link to the insurance. She added that every karateka would be expected to have it.

Basupang urged former BOKA president, Tshepho Bathai to offer advice instead of fighting the association. She said Bathai should take responsibility as a leader as he was given a mandate by the affiliates.

Former BOKA vice president (technical), Christopher Ponatshego said the idea was at infancy stage but the committee had agreed with it. He said insurance company, Exclusive Insurance was identified and made two presentations.

“We had finished everything and the contract was signed with the company. It is unfortunate that BOKA leadership has no vision of developing the sport. I do not think they can come up with ideas except tournaments that can be organised by anyone,” he said.

Ponatshego said the committee has dismissed all the projects his committee had such as ‘Project 1000’. He said the project was to have 1000 clubs in schools by the end of 2016.

An official at Exclusive Insurance, speaking on condition of anonymity confirmed that they had a contract with BOKA, but it elapsed as premiums were not paid.

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