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BAA under fire ahead of IAAF president’s visit

November 2, 2018 2:00 PM
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Coe is the first leader to visit Botswana, but BAA affiliates feel they have been sidelined.

“The purpose of the visit is not clear. It is just a guessing game for us as affiliates. The BAA should have used the visit to its advantage. They should have brought us on board so that we strategise and come up with talking points for the visit,” an affiliate, who requested anonymity, said.

The affiliates are concerned that the BAA is taking Coe to a School of Excellence, Mogoditshane Secondary School, which is a developed facility. The issue is that the visit to the school might send a wrong message to Coe, who will assume Botswana is better off in terms of facilities.

“Maybe if they take him there, there should have a manual of the centre which indicates how it is being operated or they wish it could operate. That the centre should have IAAF-accredited coaches, the nutrition at the centre should be sport tailored. The core business at the centre should be more on athletics than academics,” the source argued.

Former secretary general, Kebaitse Legojane said affiliates have been informed about the visit but the problem is that they do not know where they feature in the programme. He said the previous BAA committee had invited Coe to visit Botswana and they had put everything in place.

“Coe launched IAAF Olympic Athletics Dividend in 2015, but Botswana has not benefited from it. These are some of the issues that should be discussed with him. We could be using those funds to develop our plot,” Legojane said.

The IAAF Olympic Athletics Dividend fund offers $25,000 (P250,000) every year to each national federation to assist their development.

BAA public relations officer, Ipolokeng Ramatshaba said affiliates have been included in the programme during the meet and greet session to be held on Saturday evening. When asked about the IAAF Olympic Athletics Dividend fund, Ramatshaba said BAA receives a grant annually.

“We are having a course next week for coaches and it is funded from the Dividend fund,” he said. However, Legojane rejected Ramatshaba’s explanation saying the BAA only gets the standard IAAF grant. He said the BAA has to apply to benefit under the Olympic Athletics Dividend fund.


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