MASERU — Lioli president and premier league chairman Lebohang Thotanayana has been appointed chairman of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) ahead of the Cosafa under-20 tournament to be staged in Lesotho from December 3-14.
The appointment of Thotanyana, who will be assisted by Lesotho Football Association (Lefa) 1st vice president Khiba Mohoanyane was unveiled by the Minister of Gender, Youth Sports and Recreation, Thesele ’Maseribane, during a press briefing on Thursday.
It was during this briefing that Maseribane announced that Lesotho will host the draw of the youth tourney on Friday October 11 at a venue yet to be disclosed.
He also announced that his ministry will hold a breakfast meeting with the corporate sector in the country.
“The breakfast meeting is part of our plan to make the tournament a success and we will be pleading with local companies to support the tournament,” ’Maseribane said.
“I can assure you that we are ready to host the tournament and everything is in place to host all the countries expected to grace the competition”, he said.
He pointed out that the government has allocated around M10 million while South Africa has also promised to assist Lesotho to the tune of M10 million that will be spent on improving facilities.
He said they as a government want every citizen of this country to benefit from hosting the tournament and that is why other matches will be played outside the capital city.
“Three districts of Maseru, Mafeteng and Mohale’s Hoek will be used to host matches while the Lesotho Correctional Services Ground, Machabeng College Ground, Bambatha Tšita Sport Arena and Police Training College Ground will be used by the teams to hold their training sessions,” said ‘Maseribane.
Cosafa Chief Operations Officer, Sue Destombes, said they are looking forward to a successful tournament and they are confident Lesotho has what it takes to deliver a successful competition.
“We are looking forward to a successful tournament and we are confident that this country can host a successful tournament based on the support of their government,” Destombes said.
“I was impressed when I was told that there will be an advisory board that will be helping the local organising committee to make the competition a success,” she said.
She also applauded the ministry for holding a breakfast meeting to try lure more companies to invest in the tournament.
Companies such as Matekane Group of Companies, Letšeng Diamond, Metropolitan Lesotho, Central Bank of Lesotho and Standard Lesotho Bank have already come on board to try make the tourney a success.
The regional body has also announced that at least nine nations have so far committed to sending teams to the regional tourney scheduled to get underway on December 3.
Lesotho are the host while Angola, Botswana, Madagascar, Mozambique, Seychelles, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe have all confirmed their participation in the youth competition.