Reports reaching Gazette Sport suggest that foreign players plying their trade in Botswana are currently experiencing contrasting fortunes in relation to salaries.
Last month the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Culture revealed that local players would each pocket P2500 from the COVID-19 Relief Initiative with the foreign contingent not afforded the same assistance. This publication has established that foreign players from clubs that have been assisted with wage subsidies from the Government have been paid while other foreign players from clubs which did not apply for wage subsidies have not been paid since the original lockdown (April).
Gazette Sport caught up with a coach who preferred anonymity for fear of victimization to gauge the problems faced by foreign players.
“I would like to applaud the Ministry and the Government for a great initiative, it has helped us a lot. I have four foreign players in my squad, they have received their salaries because of the wage subsidy arrangement. However, other clubs’ foreigners have not been paid. We are at risk of compromising our relationship with foreign players, Botswana will struggle to attract foreign talent going forward. With limited grants, no prize money and not enough club sponsorships clubs have failed to generate funds to sustain themselves in such difficult situations. Foreign players have no other means of making money, football brought them here and they also have to enjoy the same benefits as their counterparts, they make the same contributions to our football,” the coach stated.