Women’s football sidelined: Phafane
THE president of the Lesotho Football Association (LeFA), advocate Salemane Phafane KC, has lamented the discrimination that women’s football has suffered owing to poor relations between his association and the Ministry of Gender and Youth, Sports and Recreation.
Phafane was addressing guests at the recently held Women Super League awards at Bambatha Tsita which were also attended by the sports minister, Mahali Phamotse, and principal secretary, Seoka Tjoetsane.
He said in the past three years, women’s football has run without any financial assistance, leaving a heavy obligation of M250 000 for the association.
“We use about M250 000 each season because we cater for all costs incurred by all the eight teams in the League but we have not received anything from the ministry,” he said.
“This is the third year since the league was launched and I am disappointed to say we have never received anything from the ministry.
“Dr Phamotse, we hope you will come to our rescue. It is time that we put aside the stereotype that football is for man and as LeFA we need some meaningful funding from the ministry that can help us sustain this league. We are the sole funders of the league and that is not sustainable.”
Phamotse admitted that the ministry and LeFA there has been tension between LeFA and the ministry and but said she would task her staff to resolve the affairs.
“We have to work hard to see that we improve the relations between these two entities and that can only happen if we work together,” retorted Phamotse.
Phamotse was appointed to the sports portfolio in January after the death of Kabelo Mafura in December.
She applauded female footballers and said she was motivated by their achievements.
“It is encouraging to see women being productive instead of being charity cases.
“You should achieve your goals, not because you are women or out of pity but through hard work. You have defied the norm and I am happy for you. We are now faced with a mammoth task to ensure that our ministry prioritises sports,” Phamotse said.