LSRC ordered to take part in Swazi games

MASERU — Sports Minister ‘Mathabiso Lepono has ordered the Lesotho Sports and Recreation Commission (LSRC) not to boycott regional youth games starting in Swaziland next week.

The LSRC had said it had no option but to pull out of the Supreme Council for Sport in Africa Zone VI (SUCSA) Games after failing to receive funds from the government.

It was pointless to go to the games without preparing because of lack of money, the LSRC argued last week.

Lepono, however, told the sports commission at a meeting on Tuesday that Lesotho still had to be part of the Zone VI meet for the Under-20s.

“The commission had agreed to withdraw from these games but we had to run the idea past the sports minister and she instructed us to go ahead with our participation at the SUCSA Games,” LSRC public relations officer Jobo Raswoko told a media briefing yesterday.

“This decision (to withdraw) must have reached its finality after the consultation with the minister but we agreed to go ahead with the games during our meeting with her.”

Raswoko said the minister had promised that the M2 million requested by the sports commission for the Swaziland trip would be released by tomorrow.

“We have not yet received the money but she promised us that on Friday it will be in our hands,” he said.

“We now do not have reasons to withdraw from the games because we got the assurance and the mandate to continue with the games from the minister.”

However, even if the money is finally released, Lesotho will be thoroughly unprepared for the regional sporting gala.

The LSRC had planned to have training camps running long before leaving for Swaziland.

But because of the lack of money, which was expected to be released in September, it was difficult to organise training camps.

Lesotho will be represented in lawn tennis, football, athletics and boxing.

The participants are expected to leave for Swaziland on Tuesday.

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