Botswana dominate RASA awards shortlists

Nominated in more than seven categories

LETLHOGILE MPUANG

Orange

Botswana is expected to dominate this year’s Regional Annual Sports Awards (RASA 2018)
awards billed for  May 26 in Johannesburg. The country has been nominated in nine  (9)  of the available ten (10) categories.
The awards are an initiative by the African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5 aimed at celebrating sports excellence in the region.  These awards were first held in 2016, where only five (5) member countries had took part. However this year nine (9) nations will be part of the event.
AUSC Chief Executive  Officer (CEO) Stanley Mutoya also expressed his delight over the growth of the RASA brand since its inaugural edition in 2016.
“Today we have 9 member countries taking part in the third edition, a serious growth because in 2016 we only had 5 member countries taking part. This is an indication that we have a good product to commercialize and know the corporates in our region will be keen to partner with us” says Mutoya in an a statement from AUSC.
Announcing nominees for the 2018 awards last week, AUSC revealed that as per the AUSC Region 5 Awards Rulebook, the primary mandate of the AUSC Region 5 is to encourage all ten member countries to host national sport awards preceding the RASA. The winners at country level are automatically entered as RASA nominees.
Participants will compete in ten categories being; Junior Sportsman and woman of the year, Sportsman and woman of the year, Sportsman and women of the year with a disability, Team of the year, Coach of the year, Journalist of the year and Sportsperson of  the year.
Botswana athletics leads the nominations as 400meters runner Karabo Sibanda been shortlisted in three  categories (Junior Sportsman of the year), Team of the year, and Sportsperson of the year), while his coach Mogomotsi Otsetswe is nominated under the coach of the year bracket.
2017 Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) Junior Sportswoman of the year,  Tshegofatso Tsiang of Tennis will contend for the RASA  Junior Sportswoman of the year. Ofetntse Bakwadi of Karate is drafted under the Sportsman of the year while Onkemetse Francis (Chess) is nominated for the same award in the women division.
Botswana paralympian Keatlaretse Mabote who was the country’s sole representative at the 2016 Rio Paralympics has will do battle for the Sportsman of the year with a disability while Nonofo Zingwa of Special Olympics will represent the country under the sportswoman of the year with a disability.
The 2018 RASA will see two new editions to the basket of excitement. The Nelson Mandela Centenary celebration will form part of the activation plan. Nelson Mandela played a pivotal role in the liberation struggle of South Africa and is revert internationally as an icon and a sport legend.
“We are exuberated that his legacy and the celebration of 100 years will be part of RASA 2018 event. Also, for this third edition of RASA 2018, a regional boxing bonanza and Regional Professionals Boxing seminar will be part of the activities that will take place, leading up the night of glimpse and glamour where the winners from the 2018 edition will be announced,” concludes the statement.