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Dawn of a new era
Dawn of a new era
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Dawn of a new era

BFA grant BPL independence

This week saw the dawn of an exciting new era for domestic football with the Botswana Football Association (BFA) announcing the Premier League is now a commercial wing and fully private company.

BPL was officially registered with CIPA on Monday as Botswana Football League (Pty) Ltd.

All 16 Premier League clubs will be shareholders in the company, which will be a stand-alone entity and run its errands independently from the BFA.

Clubs have appointed representatives who will be their shareholders.

Back on 13 July, the BFA assigned a Transformation and Sponsorship Committee to oversee the change. The Committee is currently working on a constitution.

Speaking to Voice Sport on Wednesday, BPL Acting Executive Director Monnakgotla Mojaki revealed the company will solicit funds to run a professional league.

Mojaki declared their intention to rebrand the elite division and turn it into a more viable, enticing prospect that will give investors value for money.

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“The model is similar to the Premier Soccer League in South Africa. The days of our league teams depending on hand-outs are numbered!” predicted Mojaki.

Listing some of the advantages of the BPL going private, he said, “Unlike when clubs are registered as a society there will be accountability now that they are also turning into companies. They will be bound by the constitution and there will be transparency and return on investment for sponsors. People have been asking about a possible conflict of interest, as some of the transformation committee members own clubs and they also need sponsors. I can assure people that they will be guided by the constitution which will address these kinds of issues.”

When reached for a comment, the Transformation task force Spokesperson Kelesitse Gilika said there will be a meeting of shareholders immediately after lockdown where they will appoint a board of five directors.

Dawn of a new era

He said the directors can be nominated from the shareholders of the 16 teams or they can be independent.

“We are working with FIFA Professional Football Department through the assistance of BFA Chief Executive Officer Mfolo Mfolo. This has been sanctioned and sponsored by FIFA. Currently, we do not have a main sponsor. BTC and Mascom sponsorship has come to an end so we have started looking for sponsors and partners. Teams were trained on professionalism and how they can be commercialised by a consultant, Ashford Mamelodi. League will possibly start in February and for now, teams are capacitated and trained,” said Gilika, who is the President and founder of Gilport Lions.

He promised they will come up with a model that will bring ‘stability’ and ‘a conducive environment’ for partners.

Gilika further disclosed that some of the areas they will be looking at are situations when clubs relegate and registration of those gaining promotion at the end of the season and how it will affect shareholding.

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