Basotho youths off to Fifa football festival

MASERU — Eight Basotho youngsters left the country for Johannesburg, South Africa, on Sunday to compete in the Fifa 2010 Football for Hope Festival.

The festival, which was organised by international non-governmental organisation Kick4Life, seeks to give underprivileged children a platform to resolve problems through dialogue and sport.

Kick4Life development manager, Daniela Gusman, confirmed the development.

“The four boys and girls representing Lesotho arrived in Johannesburg yesterday (Sunday) and were very excited about this experience,” Gusman said.

She said 32 participants – 13 from Africa, eight from the United States, six from Europe, three from Asia, and two from Oceania – were due to take at the festival.

The Basotho youths were expected to join 24 other participants from other parts of the world for the week-long festival which ends on Saturday.

The youngsters were expected to take part in HIV and Aids discussions as well as cultural performances during the festival.

“The 32 delegations have been selected from members of organisations like Kick4life who use football to tackle social issues from homelessness in the UK and landmines in Cambodia, to HIV/Aids in southern Africa and integration of refugees in Australia,” Gusman said.

She said the purpose of the tournament is help young people from disadvantaged countries to solve problems through dialogue.

“In this tournament, mixed teams of boys and girls will compete without referees,” she said. She said the idea was to encourage youngsters to resolve disputes amicably through dialogue.

The eight Basotho youths who are taking part in the festival are Thetsane Sello, Relebohile Moloinyane, Nthona Ramphielo, Refiloe Malibeng, Remaketse Ramohomane, Mohlomi Seutloali, Mpolo Lepetla and Pinki Masoetsa.

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