Chess braces for a new leader

Neo Masanako
Tuesday, 09 May 2017
VACANT…Tshenolo Maruatona VACANT…Tshenolo Maruatona Botswana Guardian

Botswana Chess Federation (BCF) this week released names of nominees for the 2017 BCF Executive Elections to be held on the 27th of May 2017.
After serving for four years, President Tshenolo Maruatona’s committee will step down and a new executive committee will be ushered into office. Four men - Kenneth Boikhutshwane, Kefilwe Miti, Cinky Boikanyo and Motlhokomedi Thabano - will lock horns for the presidency. Kenneth Boikhutshwane and Kefilwe Miti are former BCF Secretary Generals. Miti has served the federation for quite some time; and once served under the leadership of Boitumelo Keinyatse, Patrick Wanda and Moatlhodi Kgosimore.Boikhutshwane campaigned for the presidency in 2011 but lost to Tshepo Sitale. On the other hand, Motlhokomedi Thabano is the current Development Director while Cinky Boikanyo is a former national chess team player and a qualified FIDE abattoir.

Other nominees include Mokwaledi Tingwane, GoitseModimo Makgatle and Roger Tiroyamodimo for Vice President Admin while Gofaone Baleseng and Samuel Motlhala are chasing the treasurer’s seat. Kelapile Kelatlhilwe is unopposed for the Vice President Technical position. Ranku Kesiilwe,Tshepiso Lopang and Mokwaledi Tingwane are racing for the Secretary General position. Lesego Selemogwe and Onkemetse Keabofe will compete for Technical and Ratings Director position. Moreover, Kutlwano Tatolo and Ranku Kesiilwe are for Public Relations Director whereas another intense possible run for the Development Director seat will be between Bonno Kemoneilwe, Michael Mbaiwa, Ranku Kesiilwe and Botswana’s highly ranked player, Providence Oatlhotse.

Meanwhile the absence of the pro-active spokeperson Keenese Katisenge on the list of nominees has raised eyebrows as many had expected to see her contest for the presidency. Reached for comment she said, “There has been issues with my eligibility, I have served for two terms and the constitution states that a member cannot serve for more than two terms.”
However, Katisenge said she believed that since the constitution was new and repealing the old one, she qualified for contesting but interpretation from others differed. According to her, the issue was discussed for months and they even sought legal advice, in the end she decided not to stand.

“I will not be lost to Chess, I have a local club and will also serve at the African Chess Confederation Women’s commission and FIDE,” she noted.
In an interview with BG sport, the outgoing president Maruatona said that his committee has served its purpose and is confident that they left an impressive mark in the chess family. He said the rise of aspiring stars such as Woman Candidate Master (WCM) Naledi Marape and Woman FIDE Master (WFM) Besa Masaiti serve as a clear indication of the progress they made since they assumed power.The sponsorship value from the sponsors has grown with years, “Debswana Mining Company first sponsored us to a tune of P20 000 now we are at P150 000, Metropolitan are also at P120 000 currently,” he said

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