Botswana National Olympic Committee (BNOC) Chief Executive Officer Tuelo Serufho this week tabled a strategic plan that seeks to achieve 4 Olympic and 8 commonwealth medals by the year 2020.
Addressing stakeholders and members of the press during the BNOC 2017 -2020-strategy plan presentation in Gaborone this week.
Thus far Botswana has managed to securing only one bronze medal at the Commonwealth Youth Games held in Bahamas last month through James Freeman in the men’s 1.500m freestyle swimming. Moreover Team Botswana had no luck in securing a medal at last year’s 2016 Rio Olympics held in Brazil.
Nevertheless Serufho, expressed confidence of securing an international medal ahead of the 2018 Commonwealth games scheduled for the Gold Coast in Australia as well as the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Local athletes will be working hard to close the value gap of 11 medals.
According to Serufho, the BNOC intends to achieve their set goals by creating a conducive environment for athletes to excel and hopefully bring home positive results. Furthermore ,the BNOC boss said they will strive to make athletes welfare their number one priority.
The BNOC CEO noted that athletes are the main stakeholders in sports and with that, they will be calling for increased capacity of coaches, sport administrators and medical personnel.
Serufho said the BNOC leadership intends to improve the monitoring of athletes and increasing for development. “This could only be achieved through the assistance of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the government and the local private sector.”
Moreover, Serufho said there is urgent need to improve the BNOC’s talent identification and development programmes. “We will ensure that we reach all corners of Botswana and unearth all hidden talent. This will assist us in forming a formidable national team that will continue raising the flag high just like our current athletes,” he said.
Meanwhile, the outgoing BNOC President Negroes Kgosietsile said Botswana should be inspired by the improved performance of local athletes at world stages. “The future of our athletes is indeed promising,” Kgosietsile said.
Moreover, Kgosietsile said it is entirely up to them as the BNOC management to support, sustain and nurture the emerging athletes in order for them to shine even brighter.
According to Kgosietsile, the BNOC’s primary focus in the next four years is to reduce over reliance on Government and International partners funding, adding that it is high time they began leveraging on emerging opportunities in the market both locally and abroad.
“This will be achieved if only we can enhance our communication with stakeholders and clearly articulate our mandates. The BNOC is committed to doing their best not only to produce quality athletes but also coaches, administrators, sport science and medicine personnel.”