Football progress

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MASERU — Premier League chairman Tlholo Letete says Lesotho is “50 percent” towards accomplishing the Mohale Declaration, a roadmap designed to turn local football professional by 2014.

Letete was speaking to the Lesotho Times after the Premier League on Monday sent a progress report to Fifa regional development officer Ashford Mamelodi.

Mamelodi, during a visit to the country last month, said Lesotho had done very little of what is outlined in the roadmap.

He said he would give Lesotho only “three out of 10” in terms of efforts made towards turning the domestic game professional.

However, Letete was adamant Lesotho had moved halfway towards achieving that goal.

“We are about 50 percent when we are talking about completing the Mohale Declaration,” Letete said on Tuesday.

As part of the Mohale Declaration, Lesotho should have a contract system for players and coaches, a coaching licensing scheme and established youth development leagues.

Letete admitted obstacles remained but he insisted they could be overcome.

“It needs the commitment of everybody involved in football,” he said.

“There are a lot of issues that we still have to address for us to get where we aspire to be.”

Other major measures detailed in the Mohale Declaration include a club licensing system, the appointment of refereeing inspectors and the implementation of safety procedures at all league matches.

However, all these measures still seem far from being achieved.

The Premier League and its clubs have also failed to release annual financial audits.

This was supposed to have started in 2009.

“It is one of our greatest challenges,” Letete said of the financial audits.

“And it is not only clubs that are struggling — even the league.

“We are still lacking the human resources that understand the importance of completing this task.”

“The sphere of volunteers in which we work has many short comings,” Letete added.

“There are areas that we started on like having match commissioners but we did not follow through on them.

“It’s a question of money. But you can’t make money playing on open fields.”

The Premier League teams have however all managed to register 100 supporters, have eight marshals at matches, a rubber stamp, a revised constitution, a stretcher and a technical area with 24 seats as set out by the top-flight division.

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