Deadline for restart plans

Deadline for restart plans

MASERU-Lesotho’s various sports associations have until tomorrow to submit their restart proposals to the Lesotho Sport and Recreation Commission (LSRC).
The plans need to clearly explain how each body plans to resume games, programmes and competitions in their respective sports.

LSRC spokesperson Teboho Rakhomo on Monday told thepost that the LSRC has already written to all 27 of its member federations.
He said the LRCS hopes to meet the new Minister of Sport, Likeleli Tampane, to present the various proposals from its sports bodies, as soon as she becomes available.

The sports ministry will then take the proposals to the National Emergency Command Centre (NECC) which will decide to give the green light or not.
“We had a meeting with the Command Centre last week and we have been doing consultations with all the stakeholders, as the LSRC we have written to associations asking them to submit their proposals,” Rakhomo said.

“(The sports bodies) have the whole of this week (to submit), and then we will study such proposals and present them to the minister next week or as soon as she is available, because remember we go through the ministry and they will take our proposals to the NECC.”

Rakhomo said the LSRC has made an exception for the Lesotho Football Association and has allowed LEFA to meet the NECC directly and submit its own proposal.
Rakhomo said this is because LEFA is the association that appears the most ready to return to action and it has the backing from football’s world governing body, FIFA.

Rakhomo said the return of other sports and the continuation their programmes depends on their respective proposals and readiness.
Rakhomo said sports associations have to ensure the safety of athletes while they are in camp or training and that may be impossible to guarantee given the financial struggles facing many associations.

“We have to assess the readiness of our associations. As it is, you can see our government doesn’t have the capacity to handle coronavirus, look at the health facilities,” Rakhomo said.
“Now when you say you want to start (sporting activities) do you have the resources because when they say you have to screen athletes, make sure they sanitize every now and then, maintain social distancing, you need money for these things and our associations don’t have money. You have to remember we did not get any money (from the government this year) and these are resources we don’t have,” he added.

For sporting codes that pose fewer risks such as athletics and other individual sports, their chances of being reinstated are higher.
Football has been suspended since March and if it is allowed to resume then games are expected to be played behind closed doors.

Rakhomo said it will then be a matter of how the fans will be controlled and stopped from gathering at football grounds.
The safety of players will also have to be ensured.

Tlalane Phahla

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