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Licensing: Clubs under pressure 

SHARE   |   Tuesday, 11 July 2017   |   By Othusitse Tlhobogang
Tafic Football club [white and red stripes] vs Ecco City Green Tafic Football club [white and red stripes] vs Ecco City Green

Despite an outcry from some local clubs concerning club licensing compliance, BTCL Premiership new entrants are confident that they will meet the set deadline for compliance. All premier league teams have been given until 10 August 2017 to have complied. Uniao Flamingo Santos and Tafic officials are optimistic that they will meet the set deadline. Santos’s vice chairman Mhlolo Lesotlho said they are currently working round the clock to try and conclude the process. Lesotlho was confident that they would have met almost all the requirements by August 10. “Most of the requirements are very straight forward. We are already pushing on them,” said Lesotlho. Tafic PRO Warrant Kolola reiterated that some requirements are straight forward. Kolola said they at Tafic are also confident that they will meet the dead line for the club licensing requirements. He said they are continuing on very well with the process. “We have been able to so far open up an office for the club and also hire a general manager,” he said. The PRO also said they are also in a process of signing contracts with the players as per the requirement of club licensing. Though some teams complain that the requirement of junior teams is a tall order financial wise Kolola said they have this one covered already at Tafic as they have junior teams.     

Even though the teams are confident with compliance, they have raised an issue of money as their biggest problem. The other issue that the teams raised as a problem is producing audited financial reports. Both officials said it will be difficult to produce audited reports since it is very expensive to engage auditing firms. Lesotlho said they have already notified the first instance body on this issue so they may help them with a better solution. The club licensing issue is not new this year as it comes from some years back. In 2016 the clubs were given until August to have complied but they failed. This year the clubs are under immense pressure to make sure they comply as they would safe relegation if they fail to. This comes after Botswana Football Association (BFA) president Maclean Letshwiti gave stern warning against none compliance. Letshwiti insisted that these are FIFA requirements and clubs need to comply or else face being relegating to first division league. Even though the issue is only taken seriously now in Botswana, club licensing was introduced in other countries during the 2011/12 season. According to CAF, the main objectives of the club licensing are to improve the economic and financial capacity of the clubs through proper corporate governance and control. It is also aimed at promoting and improving of the quality and level of all football aspects in Africa.