Africa-Press – Botswana. Failure to implement the 2008 Bosele Declaration has derailed the growth of football in Botswana. Speaking during the Botswana Football League (BFL) assembly on Saturday, Botswana Football
Association president Maclean Letshwiti said in 2008 FIFA and Botswana football leadership met and came up with a blueprint that would drive the country toward professionalism and commercialisation of football.
“Some of you will ask why we are behind Europe, but had we acted in 2008, we could have made strides,” he said.
Letshwiti said a study was done followed by the Bosele Declaration that teams would be reduced to 12.
“But we did not act because we did not believe in what we were doing and committees were set and nothing happened. FIFA lost a lot of money coming to facilitate for nothing,” he said.
The Bosele Declaration advocated for the reduction of premier league teams from 16 to 12.
Also included in the declaration is the number of people allowed in the techanical area, pre-match meetings, among other things.
Furthermore, Letshwiti said one Robbie Middleby, a specialist who addressed football constituency in 2016, had made it clear that there was no way that football could be developed without professionalism and commercialisation.
He said a committee was also formed to transform the game through a different model of leagues amongst them that of Spain and Germany.
He said all that was needed was to choose the best model but it was not done.
He said LaLiga was able to make a turnaround by following the professionalism and commercialisation programme adding that from having started bankrupt, they were currently one of the biggest leagues in the world.
On other issues, Letshwiti said every team was to have a women’s football team to promote women’s football through premier league clubs.
The president further urged football leaders to take development in general seriously, adding that Zambia was a success story because of robust youth development structures.
BFL chairperson, Nicholas Zakhem said they would always have shortcomings given that they were established two years ago.