Why taekwondo polls were cancelled
MASERU – The Lesotho Taekwondo Association (LTA)’s long-awaited elective conference had to be cancelled last Friday, just a day before the casting of votes at the Lesotho National Olympic Committee (LNOC) headquarters in Maseru.
This paper reported the same day that the elective conference would be unconstitutional whether taekwondo members continue with the casting of votes or not.
This was after we found out that some of the member clubs had not received any communication regarding the conference, while names of nominees were also yet to be submitted by Thursday last week – just two days ahead of the meeting.
LTA received a formal complaint from Phoofolo Associates Inc on the eve of the conference, with a letter dated March 13 and addressed to the LTA president titled ‘RE: CONVENTION OF ANNUAL GENERAL CONFERENCE TO THE EXCLUSION OF ELLIGABLE (eligible) CLUB.’
“The letter reads: “We are the legal representatives of MR Moshoeshoe Molapo, the CARETAKER of KHUBETSOANE (Khubetsoana) TAEKWONDO CLUB and APPLICANT in CIV/APN/0433/2020. We were further the attorneys on record in the aforementioned matter.
“As per the order of Court in the conclusion of the above cited matter, the list of clubs that included the identified clubs whose membership had lapsed had been declared a nullity and the conditions for the lapsing of such membership had been set out in the application.”
The latter further reads: “On receipt of the order of Court the AGM was called and the list of the clubs invited thereto was compliant with the order of Court. Quite understandably the AGM could not proceed due to the national lockdown that was imposed by the government. At the lapse of the lockdown, it is our understanding that you have quite rightly went forward to convene the AGM.
“We, however, taken notice of the fact that you have altered the list of clubs invited to the AGM. You have excluded some clubs which had formed part of the list earlier. In total the new invitation list has excluded eight clubs which were present in the previous list.”
The letter indicates the excluded clubs as the following: New Millenium Taekwondo Club, Thaba-Tseka Taekwondo Club, Cenez Taekwondo Club, Motimposo Taekwondo Club, Mokhotlong Taekwondo Club, Qacha’s Nek Taekwondo Club, Leshoboro Taekwondo Club and Matsieng Taekwondo Club.
“It is our humble opinion that this alteration constitutes a clear indication of foul play. This is particularly the case because the question of the inclusion of these clubs had been definitively concluded by the recommendation issued by the LESOTHO NATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE AND the LESOTHO SPORTS AND RECREATION COMMISSION on the subject matter.
“It is important to note that as per the invitation issued for the calling of the AGM clubs which were excluded had failed to participate in one event during the current term,” the letter further reads in part.
According to reliable sources within LNOC, the conference was cancelled after it was found out that indeed some of the clubs had not received any communication concerning the cancelled polls, amongst other things. “Taekwondo was not ready and hence why its elective conference had to be cancelled,” said one source.
“We met with them yesterday (Wednesday) and they admitted that they were not ready, acknowledging that they do not agree on many things, including which clubs should participate at the polls, the announcement of the nominees and the communication regarding the conference, amongst others.”
Our source said as a result, they agreed with the LTA leadership on the way forward.
“We have agreed on the way forward with the taekwondo authorities who understood that we were doing so to protect the image of taekwondo. “We were meeting with the executive committee and we will again meet with other taekwondo administrators who are complaining.”
LTA spokesperson, Sek’hok’he Molikoe, confirmed that his executive committee met with the LNOC authorities on Wednesday. He said LNOC said it had to cancel the conference because of queries regarding the meeting.
“They said there were queries ahead of the conference and because they would be the counting body at the end of the day they wanted to make sure that things go well, and so they recommended that we should work together,” said Molikoe.
LNOC authorities, Molikoe said, further asked them to stop taking their issues to the courts of law. This was not the first time the taekwondo elective conference was cancelled.
It was cancelled in November last year due to the same argument regarding which clubs should be allowed to participate at the polls and not, amongst other things.
That saw other taekwondo clubs resorting to the courts of law thus resulting in the cancellation of the conference at an eleventh hour.