Francis Makonese appointed Deputy Executive Director of the Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (COSAFA)

Zimbabwe-born Francis Makonese was recently appointed the Deputy Executive Director of the Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (COSAFA) - a regional football organization of 14 nations formed in 1983 in Malawi. Francis Makonese emerged victorious after undergoing a rigorous recruitment process. With a formidable background in law and sports management, Makonese brings a unique blend of legal expertise and industry knowledge to the table.

From left: New Deputy Executive Director Francis Makonese, COSAFA President Artur de Almeida e Silva and COSAFA Executive Director Sue Destombes

Holding a law degree from Nelson Mandela University and a postgraduate qualification in sports management from the prestigious FIFA/CIES Executive Program, Makonese is well-equipped to navigate the intricate dynamics of the sports realm.

Per his LinkedIn profile, Francis Makonese defines his responsibilities as the Deputy Executive Director of COSAFA with utmost clarity. His primary role revolves around supporting the Executive Director in overseeing the organization's strategic and operational management. Working closely with the Executive Committee, President, and Executive Director, he ensures that COSAFA maintains its well-earned reputation for voluntary self-regulation and instills confidence in key stakeholders such as FIFA, CAF, and Regional Member Associations.

The Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (COSAFA), established under the auspices of the Supreme Council of Sports in Africa - Zone 6, serves as a unifying force for 14 nations in Southern Africa. Its overarching goal is to foster the development of football in the region, encompassing not only the playing aspect but also the vital dimensions of referee training and game administration. COSAFA was formed in 1983 in Malawi.

The 14 member countries of COSAFA include Angola, Botswana, Comores, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, Zimbabwe, along with Associate Member Reunion.

Since 1992, Botswana has been entrusted with hosting the Secretariat of COSAFA, a responsibility that coincided with Ismail Bhamjee assuming the presidency of COSAFA and Ashford Mamelodi being appointed as Secretary General. In 2008, COSAFA decided to establish an administrative office in Johannesburg, South Africa, which now serves as the regional hub.

The current leadership of COSAFA is spearheaded by its esteemed Executive Director, Sue Destombes. Artur de Almeida e Silva, hailing from Angola, assumed the presidency of COSAFA in 2022.

COSAFA boasts a diverse range of competitions across different age groups, including senior, Under-20, and Under-17 tournaments, as well as a thrilling Beach Soccer tournament and the esteemed Women's Champions League.

Among these events, the COSAFA Cup, inaugurated in 1997, has emerged as the flagship men's competition, lauded by FIFA as the finest regional football tournament worldwide.

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Mungwadzi Godwin

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