Uniao Flamengo Santos chairman Mokganedi Mike Molefe could be retained as Botswana Premier League (BPL) chairman after reports emerged that club chairmen are reluctant to submit their names for the position. Gazette Sport investigations have revealed that club chairmen are reluctant to submit their names for the BPL chairmanship as only one club has nominated its chairman for the post. Many expected the BPL board to replace Molefe after his club, Uniao Flamengo Santos was relegated to the First Division last season. However, Molefe is still very much in the race and he stands a very good chance of retaining his position as BPL board chairman. The amended BPL constitution does not force the league to appoint a new chairman despite the fact that Molefe’s club is not active in top tier football. The constitution only states that the league’s board of governors should comprise of chairmen whose clubs are active in the league but it does not state anything about the leadership of the league. Township Rollers is the only team that has nominated its chairman Jagdish Shah as a contender for the BPL chairmanship. Football pundits have opined that local club chairmen are reluctant to take over leadership of the league. Insiders have revealed that Molefe was begged to continue leading the league at a recent board meeting after indicating that he was ready to step down. “Many club chairmen were impressed with Molefe’s leadership because there was calm and stability during his tenure. A succession plan that was set up to take over after Molefe also failed to take off,” said our source. In the succession plan, Gaborone United chairman Fedelis Nkomazana was tipped to take over as interim chairman after Molefe’s departure. However, the plan failed to take off after BPL members decided that Molefe should stay on. The source revealed that Molefe enjoys support from many within the BPL because he is a respected leader who is not afraid to make unpopular decisions. However, said the source, Molefe has a few enemies within the BPL who want him out him out. “Molefe is the best man for the job so far. The league has been very stable and scandal free ever since he took over. The corporate world now trusts the league and we are seeing a lot of sponsorships coming in,” said the source. The BPL has given clubs up to December 1 to have submitted their nominations, after which the board will convene on December 13 to elect a new chairman. Big clubs versus the northern caucus BPL insiders have revealed that northern clubs will have a big say on who becomes BPL chairman. Reports indicate that the northern clubs will oppose a move by big clubs from the south, among them Mochudi Centre Chiefs, Township Rollers, Gaborone United and Extension Gunners who want to appoint one of their own as chairman so they can play a more dominant role in running the league. The northern caucus, which includes FC Satmos, Ecco City Greens, BR Highlanders, Motlakase, Orapa United and Sankoyo Bush Bucks, could either push for one of their own to be appointed chairman or alternatively rally behind Molefe. “The northern clubs have been marginalized for some time and they could spring a surprise. They could easily push for their own chairman because they would need only three more votes from the southern based clubs. Another possible outcome would be for the northern caucus to retain Molefe,” said our source. Bennett Mamelodi’s future Meanwhile, BPL chief executive officer Bennett Mamelodi’s future will largely depend on whether Molefe is retained as club chairman or not. Mamelodi’s future will be in doubt if Molefe is not retained as chairman. Molefe was instrumental in bringing Mamelodi to BPL, initially as a consultant and eventually as CEO of the league in 2012. Whether Mamelodi will keep his position if Molefe departs remains to be seen. However, some of the big clubs are reportedly desperate to get rid of him as they are not happy with the way he relates to them on a professional level.
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