Botswana Karate association (BOKA) spin doctor Jerry Ditlhong is braced to restore the tattered image of his sport code. He assured in an interview that he is ready to take karate back to where it belonged with his team.
Ditlhong said re-claiming the number one sport code spot is what he and his team are aiming at. Though the interim committee that was chosen two months ago has retained most seats in the executive, Ditlhong and the Vice Secretary Kemmonye Seletamotse are the new ones that have been groped in to the team. Those from the interim are the president David Mathe, Secretary General Montshwari Motlogelwa, Programmes Coordinator Mpho Bakwadi, Treasurer Lere Basupang and Additional Member Sidney Maruping. On why they have chosen to retain all members of the interim committee Ditlhong said with a deep analysis they realised that the people chosen are the ones that can indeed restore the dignity of karate and take it where it used to be.
He said that they want people to forget what happened to karate in 2014, but rather look up to the future with them. "2014 was really a bad year. It became a circus and this saw us as karate missing a lot of chances to participate at international games, and that was not good for the code at all," he said. He said they will be engaged in a lot of social activities in the country. He guaranteed that now karate is back, and that they won’t go back. Ditlhong said several members and affiliates have shown their support, which makes them certain that they will have a great comeback. At the end of May this year they will have their first international competition this year. This will be at the Zone 6 championships in Durban, South Africa where they aim to dominate.
Their second international competition will be the All Africa Games in Congo, Brazzaville where teams have already been chosen in both junior and senior categories. He said that the athletes will start training for these games after the holidays. On how the athletes have been keeping up considering the instability that has been going on and if they are in good form, Ditlhong said as officials they are indeed shocked with the performances that the athletes made at the selections of the national teams squad. "We did not expect that much performance but they shocked us. They showed that they have been hungry to fight and doing what they love," he said. He attributed their performance to discipline that has been instilled in them from the code, because they showed that though they have not been taking part in any major game, they were exercising and making sure that they keep fit on their own. He said with the performances that they have seen and the team that they have selected, they are very certain that they will be represented well in the Zone 6 championships and that they are going to bring back medals.