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BNSC grants BONA permission to host Africa Netball Cup

16 Nov 2023

Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) has finally granted the Botswana Netball Association (BONA) permission to host the  2023 Africa Netball Cup after a lot of uncertainty on whether Botswana would host the competition.

BONA was approached by  Africa Netball some two months ago to consider hosting the competition after the designated host, Uganda, pulled out.

Given that over P1 million was required and the BNSC had not budgeted for that amount towards the competition as it was not in their plans, the organisation was constrained to assist BONA.

However, after Okavango Diamond Company (ODC) had been approached by both BONA and the BNSC to assist and they agreed to contribute P300 000 towards the event, the BNSC has since revised its decision.

The BNSC Chief Executive Officer, Tuelo Serufho said they were happy that notwithstanding the slow economy, companies were seeing the need to support sport.

He said generally the world over, competitions such as the one BONA is about to host, are private sector driven.

“We are happy that the tide is changing and one remains hopeful that the support by the ODC and Lucara Diamonds to BONA would not only be for the short-term, but rather enduring relationships that will immensely contribute to the development of the sport of netball in Botswana,” he said.

Serufho said he was hopeful that this would ultimately lead BONA to return to Tier 1 and to the country exporting athletes to professional leagues abroad, in addition to the country qualifying for competitions such as the Commonwealth Games and World Cup.

“We are happy that between us and BONA, we were able to broker quite a few deals, which have now made the hosting of this competition possible,” he said.

Key amongst the deals, he said, was getting the sponsorship from  ODC, which reduces the financial burden on sport authorities and as such was the game changer with respect to hosting the competition.

BONA spokesperson, Mokereste Mokereste said given the short notice they were given by Africa Netball, which did not allow BONA to have met the BNSC hosting policy and therefore have the competition planned for appropriately, they convinced Africa Netball to cover costs related to their board members who will come to Botswana for a meeting on the sidelines of the competition, in addition to cover costs for technical and match delegates.

“I would also like to add my word of appreciation to the ODC for coming to the rescue of the event. Their support means a lot to us,” he said.

The competition will be held at the University of Botswana Campus Indoor Sport Centre from 28th November to 6th December, 2023. ENDS

Source : BOPA

Author : Anastacia Sibanda

Location : GABORONE

Event : Interview

Date : 16 Nov 2023