Botswana Premier League sponsors Botswana Telecommunications Corporaton Limited (BTCL) has finally released teams prizes for the 2015/16 season. Last season, which was by far one of the most controversial football seasons in the local game, still to this point has not provided the out-right winners of the 2015/16 season, despite Rollers thumping Chiefs 5-1 in a game that was expected to determine the ‘real’ champions.
As previously reported by this publication last month, this later ‘forced’ BTCL to resort to withholding onto the teams prizes until the final verdict by the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) over the case between Rollers and Gilport Lions, which is anticipated to take place next month.
However, due to many clubs’ loud decry for lack of funds, which led to limited activities for some in the just closed transfer window, the telecommunications company finally decided to release the team’s prizes.
“All teams received their prizes on Friday (last week), and all players individual prizes were also allocated,” said a source close to the developments.
The Gazette Sport source also disclosed that both Rollers and Chiefs each received P500 000, with winners yet to be determined.
“Both teams (Rollers and Chiefs) received P500 000. Once the CAS case is over, and we all know who the league champions are, they will receive the remaining balance of P500 000. The decision was not taken by the sponsor alone,but rather by both sponsors and BFA (Botswana Football Association),” briefly gave the informer.
Furthermore, according to information relayed to Gazette Sport, the league sponsors have taken a decision that for the 2016/17 season, teams monthly grants will now be paid directly to clubs, and not through the Botswana Premier League as it was in previous seasons.
Those in the know say this decision follows last season’s developments, where clubs went several months without receiving their monthly grants.
“From now on, teams will be dealing with be Mobile directly, when it comes to monthly grants. This is because of what happened last season, where teams had to go for more than three months without getting the grants, though the money had long been deposited into the league accounts. The sponsor is really desperate to try and avoid last season’s embarrassments,” said one official of a certain league club.
Earlier this year, there were allegations of match fixing, after Rollers investor Jagdish Shah had apparently agreed to financial assist some of the league sides. Rollers were however never found guilty or brought to task on the issue.