We need introspection: Phamotse
THE Minister of Gender, Youth, Sports and Recreation, Mahali Phamotse, says the country needs introspection in reviewing the poor performance at the ongoing African Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5 Games in Botswana.
The minister said that late preparations could be the reason for which Lesotho always fails to rise to the occasion in big competitions and it needs to be addressed as soon as possible.
“What is important is that we thank all the athletes for being here to represent their country despite the challenges that we always face in preparing late for the games,” Phamotse said.
“We know that even this time around there were things that were not delivered on time and that negatively affected the performance of the athletes. But I have been here following the team and me being here until the 17th of December when the games end is to follow every sporting code and its performance and how we can find answers for the poor performances.”
The minister said she is not just watching the games for the sake of it but is also passionate about sports and is using her stay to identify the country’s challenges.
“I just do not watch for the sake of it but it’s my passion too and this will also help us come up with answers for the poor performances.
“I know that sometimes losing can be a combination of a lot of issues so I am thankful to the athletes for their resilience in representing the country.
“I also hope that the athletes are giving their best even when they lose but its evident already that preparations are crucial.
“Physical preparation, the logistics and punctuality are important. At the same time, it’s important for the athletes to all give their best against all odds,” she said.
The minister admitted that it was a mammoth task to get funding for the country’s sports teams from government if the results are not forthcoming.
“I won’t say a lot today but we will have a closed session with the leadership of the team and the ministry.
“That’s where I will raise my concerns to fix all the things that will help us perform better. What I can tell you is that it’s very difficult. It’s difficult for me when you lose to explain myself to the cabinet.
“When I go back, I have to explain why our team lost but expectations are always big at home and that’s why I expect athletes to work hard. It raises a lot of questions when the team is not doing well because honestly, it’s shameful.
“We have to introspect as the sports fraternity because we can see the talent is there and maybe we have not been preparing well and I thank the athletes and their parents for releasing you to attend the games.
“I’m just here to motivate the team and after the games, I will sit down with my delegation to review the performance but I have realised that most of you did not prepare well for the games.
“That’s the most important point. Preparations give athletes and advantage over their opponents. I have seen that we have the talent but there is a lot of work that needs to be done.
“As we prepare for the 2020 games, we will have to show that we have the home advantage and perform better,” Phamotse said.