It looks like Isaac Makwala’s situation at the world Championships is more serious than most people thought. It has now been announced that the whole team will undergo counselling when they get back from London.
The Assistant Minister of Youth Employment, Sport and Culture Development, Mr Kefentse Mzwinila has indicated that the Botswana Athletics Team will undergo counseling following the unfair treatment of Isaac Makwala by the federation.
Makwala was controversially denied by the federation to compete in the 200 metres heats and 400 metres finals which he had qualified for following allegations that he might have contracted the infectious norovirus.
Addressing Parliament, Assistant Minster Mzwinila stated that the decision by the world governing athletics body to temporarily bar Makwala from participating in the championships came as a surprise to all and the Team Management as Makwala had never shown any signs of illness and no medical examination was conducted to prove his illness.
He raised a concern at the way Makwala was treated highlighting that it was both humiliating and unprofessional.
He said there was also no official formal communication from the athletics governing body to Team Botswana management regarding Makwala’s health prior to his withdrawal from both races.
Mr Mzwinila stated that there was no doubt that the treatment of Makwala, who is also a senior athlete in Team Botswana had a psychological impact on the whole team.
He therefore said all athletes, especially Makwala will continue to receive all the necessary support particularly psychological support. He added that Botswana National Sports Council (BNSC), chief executive officer and chairperson were in London to support the team.
He noted that the fact that Makwala was barred from competing in the 400 metres finals clearly denied him the opportunity to compete for medals and other incentives associated with winning the race.
The World Championships ended yesterday and TeamBW did not manage to bring home any medals.