“Modern Infrastructure is Crucial to Perfomance in Sports” – Rakgare 

Sports minister spoke of the changing landscape of sports facilities from a privilege to a fundamental right


The Minister of Youth, Gender, Sport and Culture, Tumiso Rakgare, has underscored the vital role of modern, technologically equipped sports facilities.

He was speaking at the completion ceremony of the second phase of the Karate Dojo in Gaborone where representatives of the Japanese Embassy were present recently.

“Safe, modern and technologically enabled infrastructure plays a very key part in today’s cutthroat performance sport,” he stated.


Minister Rakgare emphasised the changing landscape of sports facilities from a privilege to a fundamental right.

The dojo, whose construction first began in 1998 through the efforts of the Botswana Karate Association (BOKA), was marking a milestone in the country’s commitment to sports development.

Initially lacking funds, BOKA reached out to various donors, receiving significant support from the Japanese Embassy.

“Thankfully, the Japanese Embassy in Botswana heard BOKA’s clarion call and injected an amount of $80,000 or just over P1 million towards the first phase of the project,” said Rakgare.

Second phase

The Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) also played a crucial role by contributing P340,000 ($28,000) to ensure the project’s first phase was completed successfully.

Expressing gratitude to the Japanese government, Minister Rakgare highlighted the continuation of their support with an additional $80,000 granted for the dojo’s second phase.

“When you see Botswana karatekas performing well on the international stage, do know that you have had a role in taking them to that level,” he said, turning to the representatives of the Japanese Embassy.

International partnerships

The BNSC further demonstrated its commitment by allocating an additional P500,000 ($41,000) for the project’s completion.

This financial backing underscores a broader government strategy, not just to enhance physical infrastructure but also to nurture sporting talent across the nation.

Minister Rakgare reassured attendees of the government’s ongoing commitment to sports development, emphasising the strategic role of international partnerships and private sector engagement in achieving these goals.

Young and old

“It is against this backdrop that the Government of Botswana is not only investing millions of pula annually in sports infrastructure but also lobbying the private sector and international donor agencies and investors to partner in this space,” he said.

The sports minister emphasised the need for BOKA to ensure that the upgraded facility is looked after and used for the benefit of both the young and old in Botswana in the interest of growing the sport of Karate.

“Let me urge you to remain committed to the rule of law and governance, as non-adherence to good practice would only deter yourselves, and most importantly our young and upcoming athletes from such noble aids as those from the Government of Japan and other potential donors and the private sector,” he said.

Personal task

Rakgare iterated the importance of the practice of good governance by sport leaders. He noted that the performance of executive committees determines the success of sports, especially where resources are concerned.

“As the minister responsible for sports, I have taken it as a personal task to ensure that as a country, we realise improved and increased involvement of the private sector in sports development, which can only be achieved if we do things professionally and internal conflicts are minimised,” he noted.