SONA ignores key sport issues

Key moment: President Masisi delivering the State of the Nation Address. PIC:KENNEDY RAMOKONE
Key moment: President Masisi delivering the State of the Nation Address. PIC:KENNEDY RAMOKONE

President Mokgweetsi Masisi delivered his final State of the Nation (SONA) address before the country goes to the polls next year, but there was no significant mention of sport.

The President acknowledged star athlete, Letsile ‘School Boy’ Tebogo, who was given a standing ovation by the National Assembly. Besides further recognising the efforts of Amantle Montsho, Isaac Makwala, Nijel Amos, Ross Branch, and Tumisang Orebonye, there was not much on sport. It has been an eventful year in sport with Botswana being one of the only two African countries certified to host the World Athletics Golden Grand Prix. The event was considered a resounding success as a record athletics crowd turned up to watch international stars at the National Stadium on April 30.

However, there was no mention of the event in the SONA. Of concern, has been the growing challenge of doping with more local sportspersons falling foul of the rules. Amos, who was mentioned during the SONA, is one of the local athletes serving a suspension for taking a banned substance. Another pressing issue local sport has been facing is the failure to resume sport activities at schools. There has been a deadlock with teachers demanding remuneration for their involvement in school sport. Despite calls for the immediate return of school sports, negotiations have moved at a snail's pace. President Masisi did not mention the issue in his address on Monday.

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