LITŠITSO Motšeremeli has been appointed head of mission for Lesotho’s African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5 Games.
Motšeremeli’s appointment was announced during the Lesotho Sport and Recreation Commission (LSRC’s) annual general meeting (AGM) in Maseru on Sunday. The next AUSC Games will be held in Malawi from 2 to 11 December 2022. Lesotho hosted the previous edition last December in Maseru.
Although the games are held biennially, the Region 5 Council of Ministers decided to host back-to-back editions after the deferment of the Maseru edition from 2020 to last year on account of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Motšeremeli’s appointment was confirmed by the LSRC’s acting chief executive officer, Teboho Malataliana.
He said other names that will form the team’s leadership will be announced in due course.
“Yes, it is true that Ntate Litšitso has been appointed head of delegation for the Malawi games,” Malataliana told Lesotho Times this week.
“We have also submitted our budget to the Gender, Youth, Sport and Recreation Ministry.”
Meanwhile, Motšeremeli is expected to start his role anytime this week because the LSRC wants the team to be prepared early.
The age limit for the December games was reduced from under-20 to under-18. This was done to ensure that most of the athletes who participated in the games last December will still be eligible for this year’s edition.
This means that Lesotho already has the bulk of the teams in place.
On his part, Motšeremeli said he was delighted with the appointment.
“I am delighted to be appointed to the role as that indicates the level of trust the sport leadership has in me. I do not want to break that trust.
“I am looking forward to meeting with all sports leaders from national federations, our mother bodies as well as the Sport ministry to map the way forward and see how best we can work together in preparing a competitive team,” Motšeremeli said.
His biggest challenge would be accessing resources for the team. In the last edition, the team’s preparations were shambolic because of the delayed release of resources. Athletes ended up participating in the games without ever getting into camp.
Funds for the preparations were only released two months before the games.
Despite the poor preparations, Lesotho punched above its weight finishing third in the overall medal table with 18 gold medals, 17 silver and 17 bronze medals adding up to 52 medals.
South Africa came first with 75 medals (37 gold, 27 silver, 11 bronze), while in second was Botswana with 64 medals (24 gold, 21 silver and 19 bronze).
Therefore, Motšeremeli said their work was to ensure that Lesotho either maintains its third position or improves.
Motšeremeli is also the secretary general for the Federation of Lesotho Rugby (FLR).