LEFA seeks M11mil­lion

Lesotho Times - - Sport - Mikia Kalati

The Le­sotho Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion (LEFA) has re­quested M11mil­lion from the Min­istry of Gen­der, Youth, Sports and Recre­ation to fi­nance the na­tional teams’ ac­tiv­i­ties for the 2016/17 fi­nan­cial year, ac­cord­ing to the fed­er­a­tion’s pres­i­dent, Sale­mane Phafane.

Phafane made the rev­e­la­tion dur­ing a me­dia briefing held at Bam­batha Tšita Arena on Tues­day.

“We had prob­lems get­ting funds from our Min­istry of Sports in pre­vi­ous years which re­ally af­fected the ac­tiv­i­ties of the na­tional teams,” Phafane said.

“It must be noted that the na­tional team, Likuena, as well as other na­tional sides, re­main the re­spon­si­bil­ity of the govern­ment.

“Things were not run­ning smoothly in the past as far as get­ting fund­ing from govern­ment was con­cerned and even to­day, we are still owed money that was sup­posed to have funded Likuena’s ac­tiv­i­ties.

“It was re­ally dif­fi­cult to fi­nance the na­tional team, but we have since sat down and things are im­prov­ing a bit.”

Speak­ing at Tues­day’s presser, LEFA sec­re­tary gen­eral, Mokhosi Mo­hapi, said it would cost about M5 mil­lion to fund Likuena’s par­tic­i­pa­tion at the 2016 Cosafa tour­na­ment to be held in Namibia in May, as well as the team’s re­main­ing 2017 Africa Cup of Na­tions Group J qual­i­fiers. Likuena play back-to-back matches against the Seychelles away and at home in March.

The na­tional team also play ethiopia at home and then travel to Al­ge­ria for their last match of the group.

“We have al­ready writ­ten to two coun­tries re­quest­ing them to play against us in friendly matches be­fore we de­part for Namibia,” Mo­hapi said.

“The other money will go to­wards the na­tional un­der-20 and un­der-17 teams that have also been reg­is­tered for the African Youth Cham­pi­onships.

“Usu­ally the ac­tiv­i­ties of each team cost around M3 mil­lion as their road to qual­i­fi­ca­tion is a bit sim­i­lar.”

Mo­hapi fur­ther noted LEFA of­fi­cials had al­ready met Sports Min­istry au­thor­i­ties in an ef­fort to im­prove their work­ing re­la­tion­ship .

“We have al­ready met with the min­istry to re­mind them of their re­spon­si­bil­ity as far as the na­tional teams are con­cerned and things have re­ally im­proved as they are also re­pay­ing monies they owed us from the past few years,” he said.

Mean­while, Phafane also an­nounced that the as­so­ci­a­tion had in­creased fund­ing for its 10 District Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tions (DIFA).

“I am proud to an­nounce through our LEFA as­sis­tance pro­gramme, we have in­creased the sub­ven­tion of our DIFAS from M15 000 to M20 000 and it is worth not­ing that this money had been in­creased from M10 000 to M15 000 just a few years ago,” said Phafane.

“This has be­come our cul­ture to help our DIFAS as they are the mid­dle­men with our foot­ball com­mu­ni­ties in the coun­try’s 10 dis- tricts.

“The money is meant to im­prove the level of foot­ball within the dis­tricts and this is one of many as­sis­tance pro­grammes we give to district foot­ball as­so­ci­a­tions, in­clud­ing pro­vid­ing them with soc­cer balls, an­nu­ally.”

The LEFA boss fur­ther said they are in the process of pur­chas­ing fur­ni­ture for all their district of­fices af­ter buy­ing them new com­put­ers in 2015, and pro­vid­ing them with M680 000 to cover salaries.

THE Likuena squad that played against Co­moros in Oc­to­ber 2015.

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