Botswana Rugby Union (BRU) newly elected President Dave Gilbert is being pressured by his rival Muyarasi Mhonda to resign his post because he used “dirty political tactics” during the campaign to win the election.
The BRU ushered in a new executive committee at its Annual General Meeting last week in Gaborone. But hardly before the executive can settle, Mhonda accuses Gilbert’s team of “double standards” and dirty tactics.
Among these, he says Gilbert, who also sits in the executive committee of the Confederation Africaine de Rugby and the International Rugby Board (IRB’s) ad hoc sub-committee, should have sought a waiver from both international bodies whether to contest for the BRU top position. “I had not seen it”, bewailed Mhonda popularly known as Munya.
Mhonda also accused Gilbert of circulating an email (a copy which we have) inviting all delegates for a braai prior to the election. “There were some discrepancies prior to elections. Dave threw a braai for all delegates with voting rights,” Mhonda said, adding that Gilbert should either resign as BRU president or relinquish his international titles.
“The new BRU constitution does not allow rugby leaders to hold two positions, he should resign from CAR and IRB in 30 days”, Mhonda grumbled. According to Mhonda, Segaisi who also sits on the BISA rugby committee is similarly conflicted. Munya claimed that northern clubs understood his message well while in the south he was not clearly understood. “I receive two votes from the south, one from my club UB Rhinos and another from a certain club I cannot name”, said Munya.
In his acceptance speech Gilbert invited all those that lost in the election to work with him. “My door is open; you can call me any time to discuss rugby,” stated the BRU president. But Munya is not amused. “I want to make UB rugby the best, no slander no negative comments”, he reacted to a question about his future. In an interview Gilbert said he is going to improve governance and make BRU credible to sponsors and other stakeholders.
He added that he has experience and connections both with captains of business and rugby respectively. The new BRU president said IRB usually funds courses and administrative courses for its members. “We have to get our four year strategic plan in order, we also have to utilise both IRB and BNOC training programmes”, Gilbert added.
Gilbert admitted throwing a braai for delegates, “Yes I did organise a braai for all delegates. Remember they are from all over the country, I wanted them to meet my team”, said Gilbert. As for the new BRU constitution Gilbert said, “I had African rugby president this morning congratulating me, I think what Munya is doing is not right”, said Gilbert. According to Gilbert Tosca as an additional member can sit in as many sub committees as possible.
Gilbert was voted by 11 clubs while Mhonda received eight votes. The highly contested portfolio was the vice president administration where Oupa Pandor lost by nine votes to Lesedi Keekae who managed 10 votes. Former Vultures coach Shaun Irish was unopposed for the post of vice president technical.
Ernest Mantsi with 11 votes emerged as victor for the general secretary position while Jerome Alamu and Karabo Modise shared the remaining eight votes. The treasurer general Vincent Mashale and ladies representative Keneilwe Modise were unopposed. Bob Lekang who previously served as BRU president and vice president, former secretary General Mpho Masisi, Thusego Segaisi, Donald Kandima and Kinsley Dodoski Segaisi received 13 votes while the other four received 10 votes.
Ghanzi rugby club did not participate in election since they have not paid their yearly subscription fees.