THE Lesotho Football Association (LeFA) is supporting Mamelodi Sundowns owner Patrice Motsepe in the upcoming Confederations of African Football (CAF) presidency elections.
LeFA secretary general Mokhosi Mohapi said this is an interview with the Lesotho Times last week.
The continental football body is heading for its elections on 12 March 2021 in Rabat, Morocco. Motsepe is one of the candidates along with Jacque Anouma of Ivory Coast, Emmanuel Senghor (Senegal) and Mauritanian Ahmed Yahya.
The Council of Southern African Football Association (COSAFA) has already declared Motsepe as its contestant. The unanimous decision was reached at a COSAFA executive committee meeting on 27 January.
This is the second time that the COSAFA executive has forwarded Motsepe’s name after nominating him in 2017. The 2017 election was eventually won by Madagascan Ahmad Ahmad who was later banned from football for five years by FIFA.
“We are confident that once we take a unanimous decision to back one of our own, other members who want real change in CAF will join the winning party. In Motsepe we have a candidate who will usher in a new era for African football,” COSAFA president, Phillip Chiyangwa from Zimbabwe said.
Mohapi also reiterated that they would be sticking with the COSAFA decision and are also voting for Motsepe from whom they believe the COSAFA countries will benefit if he is elected CAF president.
“About four years back, COSAFA resolved that we would all support one candidate whenever there are such posts for grabs. The resolution was reached after it was discovered that most of the times, we end up in unnecessary conflicts which caused hostility among many people from the region contesting for the same position and expecting all of us to support them.”
He said they waited this long to reveal who they would be supporting because they had to await the COSAFA decision.
“We had to wait for the region to decide on one candidate who we could all back. This is all we have always preached. As an association, we are bound by the COSAFA resolution. Our president, Salemane Phafane, is also the honorary vice president of COSAFA.”
Mohapi said having an English-speaking president could also work to the region’s advantage as CAF has for a long time CAF been led by people from either French speaking or Arabic countries.
“Having an English-speaking CAF president means it would be easier for us to get an audience during meetings as opposed to when there is a French or Arabic speaking president.
“Although Motsepe has not promised Lesotho anything because it would end up looking like vote rigging, we are just hoping that since he is close-by, he will understand our needs and challenges better.
“We don’t want his money. We are clear about that and we are not even asking for donations but we want a clear understanding that we can work together,” Mohapi said.