The Botswana Football Association (BFA) will relegate Premier League clubs who fail to pay their players.
It means that that the BFA are in line with the Confederation of African Football’s Club Club Licensing rules.
Last season, the Footballers’ Union of Botswana said up to 10 of the 16 teams were unable to regularly pay players, due to financial difficulties.
“Any team found guilty, will be immediately relegated to the bottom tier. We are serious about this issue,” BFA CEO, Mfolo Mfolo said.
Among the teams to struggle paying its players in the past has been top-flight side Gaborone United.
Last season it culminated in a fine of US$50,000 from Fifa and the docking of three points by the BFA over the club’s failure to pay Ghanaian Appiah Bismarck.
For the most part, clubs have welcomed the move but point out that the funds from the BFA are paid promptly.
Extension Gunners, who were one of the teams that had difficulty paying its players, feel the process could have been delayed as some clubs are not ready.
“We, as a club are ready, but the BFA should also ensure that club grants are released on time. Money must be made available,” Willoughby Kemoen, the club’s public relations officer, said.
Miscellaneous were another club who faced financial issues and they too are pleased with the new regulations.
“It is a good move, it is only that as clubs, we don’t have resources,” club chairperson Seiphetho Sefhako said.
For their part, the BFA has promised to release grants early in order to enable clubs to comply with the new requirements.
Clubs also face a fine or risk losing up to six points if they fail to establish a permanent office space or run a development side for under-19 players.