New Botswana Karate Association (BOKA) President Tshepo Bathai defeated his presidential opponent and Vice Technical director Mpho Bakwadi for the association’s top post this past Saturday at the Big Five Lodge.
While there are relatively new faces who triumphed in committee elections, Bathai is no stranger to the BOKA Presidency having served a five month tenure in 2014. The former senior national team star’s track record in karate speaks volumes having been part of BOKA structures for the last 26 years in which he once accumulated a silver medal at the All Africa games in 2003, amongst other honours.
Accusations of favouritism and nepotism in the association down the years have hampered transparency in the past committee. Sources have claimed that Bathai’s exit was launched by internal squabbles which saw initiatives such as Botswana Karate Foundation fail.
Fast forward three years, the fourth Dan black belt gaffer will have a second bite of the cherry and he also revealed the initiatives he intends to instill in the association.
“As we all know I had a short stay in the Presidency post back in 2014 because of the lack of support for the changes I wanted to implement in BOKA. This saw programs such as Botswana Karate Foundation stall so I intend on increasing between affiliates so that projects move faster,” Bathai told Gazette Sport.
Bathai further stated that in his four year term between 2017-2020 he intends to set up an investment and finance committee, encourage transparency in national team selections and the elite karate academy..
“One thing I have observed the communication gap of sub-structures in the association which often leads to executive committee taking all decisions I intend to rectify that. All this is in the BOKA constitution so the new committee will make sure everyone adhere to the rules,”Bathai concluded.